The Champion's Table
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Friday, April 28, 2017

Homecoming: Napa Rose Food and Wine Pairing Experience

The Disneyland Resort is truly a place where my dreams came true. I still remember my first visit to Disneyland when I was 4-5 years old and knew right then that I wanted to work there when I grew up. When I turned 16, Disneyland started recruiting at local Orange County high schools. With a referral from one of my mom’s friends, I landed a job as a Culinary Hostess at Café Orleans in New Orleans Square and is also where I met my future hubby. Accolades of my Mickey Mouse bread boule “invention” advanced me to Food Concept and Product Development. I worked as a Storyboard Artist just as they broke ground on Disney’s California Adventure, The Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, and Downtown Disney. Napa Rose at The Grand Californian Hotel & Spa holds a special place in my heart. My team had its last dinner here as each of us went on to other positions within Disney or to pursue careers outside of Disney.

General Manager Philippe Tosque (Courtesy of The Disneyland Resort)
Napa Rose Food and Wine Pairing Experience is where exceptional wine and food come together in a tasting event in the Napa Rose lounge. General Manager, Philippe Tosque, and his team of in-house sommeliers and culinary staff have put together five different wines with carefully paired artisanal cheese and small-batch cured meats. Your servers are sommeliers and will provide tasting notes, information about the origin of the foods and interesting details on the wines being served. This is great for the wine novice and even wine aficionados since pairing wine with the right foods is always a learning process. The selection of wines and food pairings will change every month or two.

Here is a look at what will be served through mid-May:

House Smoke Maple Leaf Farms Duck Breast with Blonde Morel Mushrooms and Kumquat paired with 2011 Conde Valdemar Tempranillo (Crianza, Rioja DOCa, Spain). Tasting notes: Bright red cherry hue; Intense ripe fruit aroma along with spicy notes, cocoa, and balsamic; Well-balanced with long finish. The earthy, smoky, and tangy flavor from the duck pair perfectly with this Tempranillo.

Lamb and Kalamata Olive Paté with Mustard Accents paired with 2014 Stolpman Vineyards Estate Syrah (Ballard Canyon, Santa Barbara County). Tasting notes: Dark red hue; Earthy, menthol, smoky flavors on the palate. This pairs perfectly with the lamb, but would also be great with a chargrilled thick-cut ribeye.

Laura Chenel’s Crottin (California) paired with 2006 Reinhold Haart Riesling (Spätlese, Piesporter, Goldtropfchen GG, Mosel). Tasting notes: Golden hue; Earthy and apricot aromas; Juicy acidity, spicy minerality, and flavors of peaches, apricot, red raspberry, and tangy lime. This pairs perfectly with the soft-ripened creamy flavor of the crottin.

Fiscalini Cheese Company Bandage Wrapped Cheddar (California) paired with 2011 Castiglion Del Bosco Brunello di Montalcino (DOCG, Tuscany, Italy). Tasting notes: Ruby red hue; Complex and inviting mouthfeel with balanced flavor. This pairs perfectly with the creamy sweetness of English style farmhouse cheddar.

Rogue River Blue Special Reserve (Oregon) paired with Graham’s 10 Year Tawny Port (Douro Valley, Portugal). Tasting notes: Deep tawny color; Molasses and fig aromas; Dark fruit and molasses flavor enrobe the palate. This pairs perfectly with the intense yet creamy blue cheese.

A Disney-perfect adventure awaits you at the Napa Rose Food and Wine Pairing Experience. Make your reservation today for a relaxing afternoon or a nice break during the day when visiting the Disneyland Resort.

For more information:
1600 S. Disneyland Dr.
Anaheim, CA 92802
Saturday afternoons from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Guest must be 21 or older and must present valid photo ID to attend.
Cost: $95 per person (tax and gratuities included)
Reservations: Required (reservation line open daily from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.)

Napa Rose Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Save the Date: 6th Annual Queen Mary West Coast BBQ Classic in Long Beach on May 13, 2017

The Queen Mary West Coast BBQ Classic is back in Long Beach for its 6th straight year. More than 50 top pitmasters from across the country will gather to compete in this California-State-Certified, Kansas City Barbeque Society  (KCBS)-Sanctioned BBQ Championship for an $11,500 prize purse and the title of West Coast BBQ Pitmaster Grand Champion! Let see if last year’s grand champion, Big Poppa Smokers, can shoot for three years in a row! In addition to the Chicken, Pork, Pork Ribs, and Brisket categories, Bacon and Dessert are two new categories that the pitmasters can compete in.

Blaze pulling meats from the smoker at the 2016 West Coast BBQ Classic
This year is packed with entertainment with music by Dean Kalogris, DJ Rod Epic, and others, backyard-lawn games, bars, contests, BBQ merchant market, and Kids Country where children can enjoy games, a bounce house, face painters, potato sack races, and more. The award ceremony for the victors will wrap up the day.

Tasting samples provided with smiles at the 2016 West Coast BBQ Classic
You have several options to taste this wonderful BBQ:

  • VIP Value Pack includes early admission at 10 a.m., 5 Tasting Tickets, and same-day access to the Queen Mary ship. Price is $35 through May 1, 2017 and $39 after May 1.
  • General Value Pack includes general admission to the event, 5 Tasting Tickets, and same-day access to the Queen Mary ship. Price is $18 through May 1, 2017 and $24 after May 1.
  • Kids 3 and under have FREE admission.
  • Extra Tasting Tickets can be purchased for $2 each.
  • Event parking is $20.

Blaze's BBQ pork rib turn-in box at the 2016 West Coast BBQ Classic
Follow the smoke signals to the Queen Mary for some of the best BBQ you’ll ever have. Plus, watch the pitmasters in action as each turn-in time approaches. Also, included with your admission is access aboard the Queen Mary. It is a great excuse to walk off all that delicious BBQ!

For more information:
1126 Queens Hwy
Long Beach, CA 90802
Date: Saturday, May 13, 2017
Hours: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. (early admission for VIPs at 10 a.m.)
Parking: $20