My cup runneth over….
Every May my calendar explodes, but there is always room for lunch with friends. By friends, I mean new friends, amazing food and flavorful wine. That’s exactly how I felt at the Barefoot Wines & Bubbly Anniversary luncheon at Broussard’s Restaurant. For the last 10 years Barefoot Wines has been annual sponsor of the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience.
As winemaker Jennifer Wall mentioned, Barefoot Wines is not only about wine….it’s about the experience. The iconic Barefoot logo is not just a tribute to old style wine making, but about the carefree lifestyle we all hope to enjoy. Sounds a lot like New Orleans, right?
Barefoot Wine & Bubbly winemaker Jennifer Wall is no stranger to the Big Easy. An honorary New Orleanian, Jen and her family moved to the New Orleans area at age 4 and has fond memories of her time in New Orleans. She has also celebrated her 20 year anniversary with Barefoot Wines and this year celebrated the brand’s 50 year anniversary. It’s only fitting that the Barefoot anniversary dinner be held at one of New Orleans’ oldest and beloved restaurant.
Since 1920, the iconic beauty has offered local Creole cuisine with a touch of classic French inspiration. Recently Broussard’s underwent $1 million renovation with the help of their new owners. You can imagine how excited I was to see the renovations!
We started the afternoon with Barefoot Wine & Bubbly – Crisp White Spritzer. The Barefoot Refresh is lighter in alcohol and vibrate on the palette. Served on ice, the Barefoot Refresh will become an instant favorite this summer especially at your next summer BBQ or when lounging by the pool. Barefoot Refresh (averages about $7) is available in five spritzer-style varieties.
Jennifer Wall then spoke about the company, the Brand’s history and more importantly, how Barefoot has partnered with over 3K nonprofits every year. The Barefoot Wine & Bubbly brand has successfully managed to help raise over 30 million dollars for various causes. That’s something we can all raise our glass to.
Although I have a deep love for wine, champagne is my newest obsession. Barefoot started making their Bubbly in 1998 to fill the Millennial champagne shortage. It’s no secret that my Sunday mornings begin with the Barefoot Extra Dry Champagne. Sunday morning mimosas thank you!
Lunch began with Oysters Rockefeller en Casserole paired with Barefoot Brut Cuvée. The applewood smoked bacon, creamed spinach and fennel glaze complemented the green apple, and jasmine in the Cuvée. Our second course, Oysters & Artichoke Bisque was paired with Barefoot Chardonnay. The chardonnay is one of Barefoot 17 still wines in their portfolio and the only Barefoot Wine that has a light hint of oak.
Speaking of oak, all of the Barefoot Wines can be found at your local grocery store for around $7 and Bubbly for around $10 nationally. To find a highly awarded wine so affordable is a rare treat. Good wine at a good value should be experienced every night at dinner!
For our third course, we enjoyed Pink Peppercorn Ravigote with mushroom and asparagus paired with Barefoot Pinot Noir. The Barefoot Pinot Noir can be paired with beef, pork and even certain chicken dishes. If you are like me, have a glass of Pinot Noir with a bowl of berries and call it dessert.
I know the wine and bubbly is amazing but can you believe the food? Chef Neal and his crew has done an outstanding job! Can imagine how stuffed I was during our 4th course? I managed to squeeze in Filet Mignon Broussard. The filet was topped with Jumbo Lump Crabmeat, Portobello Mushroom Cap, Grilled Asparagus, Yukon Gold Mashed Potatoes and Mustard Cream Glaze and paired with Barefoot Shiraz. Barefoot Shiraz has a hint of bacon, vanilla, caramel and offers a rich wine which complimented our filet mignon.
We sampled 9 of their 33 wines at the luncheon including the Barefoot Moscato which is the #2 selling moscato in the U.S available in still and sparkling moscato. NOWFE guests were able to sample all 33 varieties at the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience and learn more about the brand and as well as their philanthropy efforts over the years.
Barefoot has teamed up with Surf Rider Foundation for 25 years and has been an official partner for 8 years. Through the Barefoot Wine Beach Rescue program, the grassroots, nonprofit environmental organization is dedicated to bring beaches back to life and keeps American beaches “barefoot friendly”.
Sunday, June 7 Barefoot and the Beach Rescue program will be in Santa Cruz, CA. If you are interested in volunteering, you must be 21 years of age or older to attend the celebration events. If the program is not coming to a town near you, town in 2015, you can still do your part to keep America’s beaches beautiful.
For every photo posted by someone 21+ using #BeachRescue on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, Barefoot will donate $5 up to a maximum donation of $50,000 to Surfrider during the period of May 15, 2015 through September 30, 2015. For additional information, please visit BeachRescue2015.com
Have you tried the Barefoot Red Blends Collection? As you can see from the picture above, I love red wine! Recently Barefoot has released Rosa Red (my personal favorite) and the Rich Red Blend. Sweet Red Blend completes the Red Blend Collection which complements any dessert especially the Peanut Butter Mousse we enjoyed as our 5th and final course.
After a lunch like this, a nap was in my future! If you haven’t had the pleasure of dining at Broussard’s, Chef Neal Swidler will dazzle you with traditional creole flavors infused with a touch of Caribbean heritage. The combo is reminiscent of traditional Creole heritage and packs flavor to current dishes.
I have to go now, a bottle of Barefoot Refresh Summer Red Spritzer and a glass of ice is calling me name! Cheers to new friends and good wine.