PAIRINGS: NASHVILLE’S ULTIMATE WINE & FOOD WEEKEND RAISES OVER $370,000

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (March 9, 2017) – Nashville Wine Auction is pleased to announce that Pairings: Nashville’s Ultimate Wine and Food Weekend, held from February 23-25, 2017, raised over $370,000 to fulfill the organization’s mission to fund the fight against cancer in Middle Tennessee. As guests celebrated the five year anniversary of Pairings, the amount raised represented a $205,000 increase from 2013’s inaugural event and an increase of $30,000 from 2016. The total amount raised from Pairings over five years is $1,338,594! Pairings was co-chaired by Stephanie & Tom Baldwin and Denise Cummins & Jeff Hopmayer.

As the first large wine and food event in Nashville in 2017, Pairings had its highest ever attendance – a total of 861 guests, which increased from 802 in 2016.

“Being able to build relationships between wine enthusiasts in our community, West Coast wineries, and the fantastic creative culinary talent in Nashville, has been an important step in the development of Pairings,” said Holly Whaley, President/CEO of Nashville Wine Auction. “Having successfully hosted the 5th Annual Pairings, we love seeing both old and new friends coming to Nashville! We are working hard to create the ultimate pairing – enjoyment of wine and generous giving to fund the fight against cancer.”
Pairings: Nashville’s Ultimate Wine and Food Weekend kicked off on Thursday, February 23 with 15 Private Vintner Dinners, chaired by Melanie Cansler and Jodi Gillman, in restaurants and private homes throughout Nashville. These intimate dinners, which ranged from 12 to 24 people, allowed guests to meet winemakers and winery owners and taste their wines with food pairings from many of Nashville’s best chefs.

On Friday and Saturday nights, events were held at City Winery for the first time. Having the backdrop of City Winery’s winery and event venue set the stage for two successful wine events.

At Wined Up! on Friday, February 24, 28 winemakers from the West Coast came to Nashville to pour their delicious wines. Guests enjoyed not only getting to build relationships with wineries that have come to Nashville for multiple years, such as Herman Story, Kokomo Winery and Taylor Family Vineyards, but also had an opportunity to taste wines from newcomers to Nashville, such as Giornata, Ledge and Willamette Valley Vineyards. Chef Garrett Pittler of City Winery and visiting chefs from Chicago prepared delicious appetizers which paired beautifully with the wines. The Silent Auction featured 120 wine-centric Silent Auction lots, which were separated by the varietal for the first time, allowing wine enthusiasts to have a better experience shopping the auction.

At Pairings on Saturday, February 25, guests gathered to enjoy a six course meal provided by chefs from Nashville and Chicago, paired with California wines. The full menu for the evening featured these perfect wine and food pairings:

Reception Pairing – Chef Garrett Pittler, City Winery, Nashville with Zonin Prosecco
Lobster Thermidor, Cape Cod House-Made Potato Chips and Beef Tartare, Petite Sirah Gastrique, Emulsifed Quail Egg, Baguette
Zonin Prosecco

First Pairing – Chef Matt Farley, Fin & Pearl, Nashville with Suzanne Phifer Pavitt, Phifer Pavitt
Grilled Octopus, Buttermilk White Bean Puree, Celery Olive Tapenade Salad
Phifer Pavitt Date Night Sauvignon Blanc 2015

Second Pairing – Chef Charles Welch, Honey’s, Chicago with Pam Starr, Crocker & Starr
Coffee Cured Rabbit Rillette, Foie Gras Mousse, Blueberry-Black Pepper Compote, Candied Pecans, Tarragon, Brioche
Crocker & Starr Cabernet Franc 2014

Third Pairing – Chef Greg Biggers, Café des Architectes, Chicago with Ross Anderson, Cardinale
Pacific Seabass, Smoked Sunchoke, Lardo, Baby Brussels Sprouts
Cardinale 2012
Fourth Pairing – Chef Erick Williams, mk The Restaurant, Chicago with David Robbins, D.R. Stephens Estate
Pekin Duck Confit, Celery Root Puree, Heirloom Carrots, Cocoa Scented Duck Jus, Mint
D.R. Stephens Estate Moose Valley Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

Fifth Pairing – Chef Tony Galzin, Nicky’s Coal Fired, Nashville with Tom Gamble, Gamble Family Vineyards
Parmigiano Mascarpone Cheesecake, Pine Nut Crumble, Rosemary Fig Compote
Gamble Family Vineyards Napa Valley Cabernet Franc 2013

Throughout the meal, guests enjoyed a spirited Live Auction with Auctioneer CK Swett. The Live Auction featured some very special wine lots, rare wine dinners and tastings as well as extraordinary wine excursions. Some of the top grossing lots of the night included:

LOT 114: A Sure Thing: Gamble Family Vineyards, Casa Piena, Phifer Pavitt & More sold for $20,000
A four night trip to Napa for four couples while lodging at the luxurious Gamble Family Vineyards Guest House and a fully equipped itinerary of tastings at Gamble Family Vineyards, Casa Piena, Hunnicutt, Handwritten Winery and two special lunches with Harumph and Phifer Pavitt.

LOT 201: Cinema Paradiso! It’s Italian Movie Night at Nicky’s Coal Fired sold for $13,650
It’s sure to be a party when Chefs Tony Galzin, Nicky’s Coal Fired, Matt Bolus, The 404 Kitchen, James Peisker & Chris Carter, Porter Road Butcher and Leigh Omilinksy, Nico Osteria, come together for an Italian feast, inspired by classic Italian movies, such as Goodfellas, Roman Holiday and The Big Night.

LOT 123: Three 9-Liter Bottles of D.R. Stephens Cab sold for $13,000
The highest grossing wine lot in the auction went to a lucky bidder who took home 3 gorgeous 9-Liter bottles of D.R. Stephens Moose Valley Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon from the 2005-2007 vintages. That’s 3 cases of wine!

LOT 120:
Seriously Sensational Sonoma Trip for Four Couples sold for $8,500
A four night stay for four couples at the Tertulia Estate Home with VIP tours and tastings at Gundlach Bundschu, Bartholomew Park Winery, Sojourn Cellars, Ledson Winery, Dutton-Goldfield, Kistler Vineyards, Williams Selyem, Banshee Wines and Kokomo Winery.

LOT 107:
Wine Country Nirvana, Cardinale and Gibson Custom sold for $5,000
Lovers of great California cabernet know it doesn’t get much better than a three night stay for four couples at the Lokoya Villa on Spring Mountain, a VIP Tasting with Chris Carpenter, l’Eté du Vin’s Guest of Honor in 2015, tickets to a party with Nashville-based Gibson Custom and two magnums of Cardinale.

LOT 129:
A Tasteful Tour of Italy’s Top Wines with Chef Tandy Wilson sold for $5,000
Nashville’s resident James Beard Award Winning Chef, Tandy Wilson of City House will prepare an elegant menu to pair with Pam and Steve Taylor’s selections from all major winegrowing regions in Italy.

The Auction this year was dedicated In Loving Memory of Patricia Anderson, the sister of Pam Taylor, former Chair of the Nashville Wine Auction Board of Directors, who passed away after battling breast cancer. For the 2017 Raise Your Paddle, Pam and her husband Steve delivered a heartfelt message about the importance of fighting and beating cancer. Their appeal inspired guests to donate $16,250!

With the success of Pairings, Nashville Wine Auction looks forward to hosting The 38th Annual l’Ete du Vin, which will take place July 20-22, 2017.

2017 SPONSORS: City Winery, Brindiamo Group, LLC, Tennessee Oncology, Midtown Corkdorks, Pinnacle Financial Partners, Scripps Howard Foundation and Nashville Lifestyles.
ABOUT NASHVILLE WINE AUCTION: Nashville Wine Auction’s mission is to unite the wine community to fund the fight against cancer. Throughout the year, Nashville Wine Auction hosts four major events – Pairings: Nashville’s Ultimate Wine and Food Weekend, l’Eté du Vin: The Country’s Longest Running Charity Wine Auction, Champagne and Chardonnay: A Sparkling Evening Just for Ladies and The Men’s Event: Honoring the Life and Spirit of Billy Ray Hearn. Established in 1980, the Nashville Wine Auction has raised more than $21 million for organizations whose purpose is directly related to treatment, patient care, and eradication of cancer here in Middle Tennessee. Beneficiaries includes American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge, PearlPoint Cancer Support, Gilda’s Club/Nashville, Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Middle Tennessee, Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center and Saint Thomas Cancer Network.