Since its inception, the Napa Truffle Festival has gathered a group of superstars Michelin Star Chefs from around the globe to orchestrate sumptuous menus around a remarkable food: the black Périgord truffle (also known as “black diamond”). The Napa Truffle Festival, hosted by the American Truffle Company (ATC), returns for a fourth year to Napa Valley, from January 17 through January 20, 2014.
Comes to no surprise that the festival takes place in Napa Valley. Recognized around the world as a wine-growing and culinary Mecca, Napa Valley will again serve as the host for the festival weekend. ATC is partnering with The Westin Verasa Napa as “truffle central,” the Oxbow Public Market and hosting wineries HALL Wines and Nickel & Nickel, among others.
Unique to the Festival is a Michelin Star team of chefs led by Chef Ken Frank of La Toque (renowned for his Truffle Menus) presenting culinary demonstrations, and showcasing their extraordinary skills and talents in a tour de force Truffles & Wine Dinner on Saturday evening.
Leading the scientific track will be truffle cultivation expert Robert Chang and mycorrhizal expert/scientist Dr. Paul Thomas. Robert Chang is Managing Director of ATC, which is dedicated to applying rigorous scientific methodologies to help people grow European truffles and maximize yields. Dr. Paul Thomas is currently lead researcher and managing director of Mycorrhizal Systems Ltd., as well as Partner and Chief Scientist of ATC.
New this year is the Scientific Grower Truffle Cultivation Seminar on June 17, 2014 from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Designed for potential truffle growers, this in-depth seminar, provides a detailed technical overview of the science and methodology involved in truffle cultivation. Presented by ATF’s Chief Scientist Dr. Paul Thomas and Managing Director Robert Chang, attendees will learn about the myriad of scientific factors one must consider growing truffles successfully.
Saturday and Sunday will be full of seminars, truffle lunches and wine pairings. The Truffles and Wine Dinner at La Toque Saturday evening will be the festival’s main event, showcasing food from four Michelin Star Chefs: Ken Frank, Host Chef and Owner of La Toque, Napa, CA; Alessandro Boglione, Executive Chef and Owner of Ristorante al Castello, Grizane Cavour, Italy; Carrie Nahabedian, Executive Chef and Owner of Naha, Chicago, IL; and Jarad Gallager, Executive Chef of Chez TJ, Mountain View, CA. Chefs will converge in the same kitchen, to conjure an erotic, earthy and addictive meal, where the freshest and most flavorful black truffles will take center stage in each heavenly course expertly prepared by a superstar guest chefs.
Festival will conclude on Monday with a lively Napa Truffle Festival Marketplace at Oxbow Public Market—from farm, orchard and vineyard to kitchen, table and glass—showcasing local artisan vendors and their specialty food products. The Marketplace is free to the public to browse and purchase truffle fare “á la carte”. You will have the chance to sample the extraordinary flavors of the mythic black winter truffle prepared in every sort of fabulous way by the merchants at Oxbow Public Market like wild mushroom truffle enchiladas; truffled grilled oysters; pizza al tartufo; truffle-infused martini cocktails; rustic rolled dark truffles with roasted almonds (the chocolate kind); and cookies and cream cupcakes with little pink. In addition, there will be Npa Valley wines to sample, cooking demos at Kitchen Door and Ca’Momi.
Tickets can be found at the festival’s website.