The Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival (HFWF) will launch its seventh year with a bang on June 2, 2017 at The Kahala Hotel & Resort. The seafood-themed kickoff event, Cuisines of the Sea features ten of the State’s best chefs and a fireworks finale to celebrate the talent lineup announcement for #HFWF17, happening October 20-November 5 on Maui, Hawai‘i Island, and O‘ahu.
“We aim to elevate the experience for guests at the Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival every year,” says HFWF Chief Executive Officer Denise Yamaguchi. “To kick off our seventh year, we’ve invited ten of the Islands’ top chefs to craft some of the most mouthwatering dishes under a showering of fireworks at The Kahala Hotel & Resort.”
Cuisines of the Sea features James Beard award-winning HFWF Co-Founders Alan Wong and Roy Yamaguchi along with The Kahala’s Executive Chef Wayne Hirabayashi, Arancino Executive Chef Daisuke Hamamoto, Vikram Garg, Chris Kajioka, Michelle Karr-Ueoka, Mark Noguchi, Sheldon Simeon, and Lee Anne Wong. The event showcases seafood from our waters such as Kualoa shrimp, oysters, and ahi along with locally raised Ni‘ihau lamb and pork belly. Dishes will be paired with coveted wines such as Caymus, Insignia, Kosta Browne, Opus One, and Silver Oak and creative cocktails by Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits.
Tickets for Cuisines of the Sea are priced at $175 per person. To purchase tickets, please visit: www.HFWF.me. The grazing event is the grand finale for a five-day Culinary Journey of farm tours and unique experiences that will be covered by national media to shine a spotlight on Hawai‘i’s dynamic culinary scene. At Cuisines of the Sea, the themes, talent, and wineries for the Fall Festival will be announced.
“We’re thrilled to be the host resort of the second annual HFWF Launch event, Cuisines of the Sea at our Kahala oasis,” said Gerald Glennon, General Manager, The Kahala Hotel & Resort. “The HFWF organization is aligned with our corporate philosophies of community, sustainability, Hawaiian culture and educational programs and we’re proud to be a partner and presenting sponsor.”
#HFWF17 will welcome more than 100 culinary masters, 50 wine makers, and a dozen mixologists to events on Maui, Hawai‘i Island and O‘ahu from October 20-November 5, 2017. The participating chefs are personally recommended and invited by the Festival’s co-founders. “We try to invite chefs who have the same kind of passion as we do for food and sustainability,” shares Roy Yamaguchi. “Our job is to really promote the State of Hawai‘i to the rest of the world through food and the chefs become our ambassadors.”
Alan Wong recalls the festival’s beginnings, saying “We started as a three-day event in Waikiki with only 30 chefs. Now we have three events on Maui, one event on the Big Island, and five days on O‘ahu. The spotlight is put on Hawai‘i for three weeks on our people, our culture, our food, what we grow here. It’s a win win win.”
The Festival boosts Hawai‘i’s reputation as a culinary destination with prominent national media coverage valued at $12 million and attendance that’s grown to nearly 8,000. The HFWF mission is to showcase Hawai‘i’s food, farms, and young chef talent. Since its 2011 launch, HFWF has donated $1.7 million to community organizations that support sustainability, culinary programs and agriculture. Festival proceeds benefit the Culinary Institute of the Pacific, Hawai‘i Agricultural Foundation, Hawai‘i Community College Culinary Arts Program, Hawai‘i Farm Bureau, Hawaii Seafood Council, IMUA Family Services, Leeward Community College Culinary Program, Maui County Farm Bureau, Maui Community College Culinary Arts Program, ment’Or BKB Foundation, Paepae o He‘eia, and Papahana Kuaola.