Sneak Peek: 2011 Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic Seminar Details

The Second Annual Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic will take place Friday, October 7, and Saturday, October 8, 2011. And, like last year, you can sign up for one of six beverage seminars being held both evenings of the Classic!

Choose from Wine Blending; Modern Mixology; Riesling Rendezvous; Base to Bubbles; Beer, Please!; All Things Sake; and new for 2011, Spanish Wines! The hour-long seminars will be held at 4:30pm on both nights of the Classic. Learn more about the seminars and order your tickets online here. Tickets are $35 plus tax/fee.

This year, many of the seminars have changed hands and will be a bit different from what guests experienced last year. Once again, we wanted to give a sneak peek into what you can expect; so we’ve interviewed three seminar leaders to get you the inside information about this year’s Beer, Mixology, and Spanish Wines seminars!

Beer, Please!, DJ Robertson, Assistant Manager at Todd English’s bluezoo

Returning this year after a successful debut last year, the Beer, Please! seminar will be slightly different this time around.

Widmer Pitch Black IPA

Wisconsin native Robertson plans to feature beers that are unique — some you wouldn’t necessarily find at your grocery store craft beer section.

Guests will have the opportunity to sample seven different beers, including:

  • Orange Blossom Ale from Nevada and brewed with water that is infused with orange blossoms
  • Effinheimer Red Ale, a local brew from a Minneola, FL, brewery that has only been in existence for a year and a half
  • Widmer Black IPA, a new style of beer with a “dark side” due to hints of coffee flavor, roasted barley, and a high amount of hops

Food Pairings at the Beer, Please! seminar include: Rogue’s Morimoto Soba Ale with their beer-soaked cheddar cheese — and look for Rogue chocolate stout cake and Beer bread, too!

One fun takeaway from the Beer, Please! seminar will be info on home brewing. Guests will walk through what you need for a home brewing kit, and then learn the home brewing process from start to finish. Find out where to get the products to set up your own home brewery! “It’s a fun thing that I actually personally do myself,” says Robertson, who grew up brewing beer with his father!

Mixology, Lindsay Skillman, Manager Cabana Bar & Grill, B.A.R. Certified

Skillman says that this year’s Mixology seminar will feature new cocktails, but she wouldn’t tell us which ones! “One you’ll want to enjoy by the pool, especially if you’re from Florida,” she teased. “It tastes better the longer you leave it in the jar!”

Guests will taste cocktails and then get to make their own. This seminar cover the basics, but really focuses on going in-depth to show attendees how to play with spirits and conduct some molecular mixology at home using appliances and gadgets you can find at your local home goods store.

Drink Creation From 2010 Mixology Seminar

This year, the food pairing is even more impressive! Guests will get to watch the Swan and Dolphin’s nitro popcorn be created. This cold, crunchy snack combines popcorn, honey roasted peanuts, caramel shards, and a caramel mousse — flash frozen with liquid nitrogen — and cracked to combine with the popcorn! I can’t WAIT to see this!

According to Skillman, guests will learn that making cocktails can be easy — no flipping bottles behind the bar required! She’ll even be covering how to use liquid nitrogen in your concoctions, how to create foams, and how to brulee items in your drinks! “I’ve bruleed pretty much every fruit out there,” she says — and people love things that are on fire and smell good!

Spanish Wines, Maria Marcano, Certified Sommelier

As a certified sommelier, Marcano brings to the seminar her obsession with Spanish wines, which evolved from her Spanish and Latin background. Participants will learn a combination of history and culture, including how to select a Spanish wine to suit their taste. “Spanish wines are approachable, very friendly — just like the Spanish people are,” says Marcano.

Swan and Dolphin chose to showcase Spanish wines as a new seminar this year largely because they received guest feedback last year requesting it! And, according to Marcano, Spanish wines are accessible.

Red Wine

During the seminar — which won’t be a bunch of slides, Marcano promises — guests will partake in a what Marcano calls a “funky, old world activity.” It’s a scent exercise experimenting with different aromas and characteristics of Spanish wines. Plus, there will be something she calls “Spanish label reading for dummies”, which Marcano hopes will make it easier for attendees to choose a Spanish wine that suits them the next time they’re in the grocery store wine aisle or at their favorite wine bar.

More Info About the Classic Coming Your Way!

Stay tuned next week for another in-depth preview of the Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic as we chat with Luciano Sperduto, Assistant Director of Food & Beverage at the Swan and Dolphin Resorts, about what you’ll be able to experience on the Causeway this year! Let me just say — the offerings have tripled!

Reminder: Special Room Rate and Free Upgrade for Disney Food Blog Readers at the Dolphin Resort

Yep — DFB readers are treated royally during the WDW Foodie Fest and the Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic! See details here about booking your stay between October 1-9, 2011!

I’ll be at the Mixology Seminar on October 7th. What seminar will you be joining?


  1. Chris says

    I wish you had been able to interview all 6 presenters and that the other 3 are as just as exciting. Sake here as well!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *