Your Guide to the Mardi Gras Wine, Beer & Whiskey Taste

By Katlyn Moncada
In Food

The Wine, Beer and Whiskey Taste will be an evening of food and drinking where foodies and thirsty connoisseurs unite for a Mardi Gras celebration like no other. We have some inside tips and highlights that are sure to make your mouth water with excitement for the event happening this Friday, Jan. 30, from 7-11pm.

Photo courtesy of Mardi Gras Inc.

Photo courtesy of Mardi Gras Inc.

Guests will not only spend the evening with unlimited beverage samples from around the world, they will also get to chat with leading industry experts including Chris Fletcher, Assistant Master Distiller at Jack Daniel’s.

“What makes Jack Daniel’s so great is that we have a whiskey for everything,” says Fletcher regarding food that pairs well with whiskey. “Gentleman Jack is very light and soft. It can be paired with dishes that have more subtle flavors. Single Barrel certainly stands up to more robust dishes such as grilled or smoked meats, and Old No. 7, with its balance of flavor, plays well with just about anything in my opinion. Maybe that’s why it is the best-selling whiskey in the world.”

What may be unknown to many is that Jack Daniel traveled to St. Louis in 1904 as an unknown and came out as winner of the World’s Fair Gold Medal for best whiskey in the world—a first of many gold medals to come.

Photo courtesy of Sugarfire Smoke House

Photo courtesy of Sugarfire Smoke House

Also something new to this year’s agenda, Mardi Gras chair and chef Tom Schmidt of Salt and Smoke and Franco, Mike Johnson of Sugarfire Smoke House and Mike Emerson of Pappy’s Smokehouse will be adding an additional layer of flavor prior to the start of the evening for a smaller, VIP setting. The chefs—joined by Fletcher—will be chatting about barbecue and drinks with creative dishes to pair with three different Jack Daniel’s whiskeys. The pairings will include: Gentleman Jack and ribs from Pappy’s, Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 and pork belly from Sugarfire Smoke House, Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel and brisket from Salt + Smoke, as well as Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey and pie from Sugarfire Pie. Select the VIP option at checkout online to attend.

The huge exposure to all these wines, beers and whiskeys could be overwhelming to some. Tom Schmidt advises to keep portions small, yet plentiful, and says the only way to really find out what you like is by exposing yourself to as much as possible. He also says it’s important to try to think about the flavors in and of themselves to figure out what is good about the whiskey (or other drink) and not just compare them to any personal bias to be able to learn and develop your palate.

Tickets are available online for $40 through Thursday at 12pm ($50 at the door) for unlimited samples of over 50 wines, beers and whiskeys at the Bud Light Party Centre in Soulard Market Park. Guests will also enjoy complimentary samples of award-winning barbecue from Pappy’s, Bogart’s, Salt + Smoke, and Sugarfire from 7:30–9:30pm with music provided by Rockstar DJs.

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