Archive for the ‘Food & Wine’ Category

Wine Trolley Package for Two

Monday, June 25th, 2012
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Wine is the most ancient of libations and one that through the ages has been enjoyed by princes and paupers alike. There are many ways to experience wine. It could be over a fine dinner or at home with friends, but nothing beats experiencing wine at the source; the tasting room. And nothing complements the tasting room like an expertly guided tour of several of the region’s best aboard an open air Wine Trolley. According to the Monterey County Vintners & Growers Association, more grapes are grown in the Monterey County region than in any other area in California and Monterey County wines are quickly becoming some of the most sought after varietals in the country.

Experience a five hour guided wine tour with the Portola’s Wine Trolley Package for Two. Each Wine Trolley tour stops at five of the area’s finest boutique wineries while taking in the sites along the way. The package also includes a stay in one of the Portola Hotel & Spa’s newly renovated, elegantly appointed guest rooms, a warm chocolate chip cookie upon arrival and breakfast buffet for two at Jacks Restaurant. In addition you’ll also receive complimentary corkage fees at Jacks Restaurant & Lounge and access to the outdoor heated pool, relaxing cabanas, Jacuzzi and state of the art fitness center.

Fine wine, a journey of discovery that awakens the pallet, comfortable lodging and more. Salud!

Monterey Wine Festival

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012
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Who doesn’t love wine? There are many different varieties, tastes and flavors. It’s been around for centuries, fits almost any occasion and has been the central character in countless movies. We serve it at our most important occasions and are a part of cultures worldwide. Most importantly, they have entire festivals dedicated to the mighty grape. In the foodie centric times we are in, the wine festival of old has become more than just a few local vintners getting together for some fun. Multiple wineries and culinary vendors are now the norm and the Monterey Wine Festival is no different (and that is a good thing)!

In its 36th year, the Monterey Wine Festival boasts wineries and a host of other participants over two days, June 8th – 9th 2012, at Monterey’s Custom House Plaza. Want more? Then how about the Bartender’s Fedora Cocktail Throw Down, June 9th at 2pm and from Noon to 3pm the return of the West Coast Chowder Competition? The Portola Hotel & Spa’s very own Executive Chef, Jason Giles will be touting his unique take of the American staple in the Seafood Chowder category. The festival will also feature an evening of indulgence at the Night to Celebrate Reds June 8th from 5pm to 9pm and the blind taste competition where Gold, Silver and Bronze medals will be awarded. For more information log onto


Great Monterey Clam Chowder & Calamari Festival

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012
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Nothing says Memorial Day like the beach, barbeques and time with the family, but nothing says Memorial Day on the Monterey Peninsula like Clam Chowder and Calamari! The inaugural Great Monterey Clam Chowder & Calamari Festival will be held May 26-28, 2012 at the historic Custom House Plaza directly adjacent to the Portola Hotel & Spa.

Monterey’s waterfront will come alive with a full weekend of food, live music, cooking demonstrations and more types of chowder than you can possibly imagine! This free family friendly event will also feature a bevy of different food and beverage options with arts & crafts, marine-oriented educational organizations and local chefs teaching some of their culinary secrets. Live bands are scheduled throughout the weekend with the festival running from 11am-7pm on Saturday and Sunday and from 11am to 6pm on Monday.

So if you are looking for a reason to come to the Monterey Peninsula on Memorial Day Weekend, and seriously, who isn’t, make your reservations at the Portola Hotel & Spa today and plan on great food and good times at the Great Monterey Clam Chowder & Calamari Festival.

Cooking For Solutions 2012

Thursday, May 10th, 2012
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In recent years the “food scene” has exploded across the American consciousness. From television networks devoted entirely to food to festivals focusing on every aspect of the industry, food is on everyone’s mind. One of the best movements to come out of this gastronomic renaissance has been that of sustainability. Many restaurants source local and look for organic products, but when it comes to seafood, there was not a clear set of sustainable guidelines.

Enter the Monterey Bay Aquarium and their Seafood Watch® Program. The program sets these guidelines for the supplier and the consumer and their Cooking for Solutions event brings together culinary stars for three days of fantastic food and fellowship designed to educate and raise money toward the stewardship of the ocean. This year’s Cooking for Solutions event kicks-off May 18th and runs through the 20th at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The event features over 40 award winning chefs and television personalities including the Portola Hotel & Spa’s very own Executive Chef, Jason Giles preparing sustainable seafood in an incredible environment.  With a variety of events from the Opening Night Gala and the weekend’s Salon Series to the Celebrity Chef’s LIVE series and the Food & Wine Adventure, you are sure to find an event that fits your taste. So learn the ins and outs of sustainable seafood and helping to save the seas at the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Cooking for Solutions event. Your taste buds will thank you and so will the ocean!

5th Annual Pebble Beach Food & Wine

Thursday, April 12th, 2012
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Not since the days of Bacchus, has a feast so sumptuous and splendid been laid out as will be gracing the grounds of Pebble Beach this week for the 5th Annual Pebble Beach Food and Wine (PBF&W), April 12-15, 2012. Each year, the event seems to top the previous year’s offering and this year will be no different. Take over 50 of the world’s top chefs, mix in world class food and wine, a liberal dash of glitz and glamour and you’ve got the PBF&W.  Check out their website for this year’s incredible line-up of celebrity chefs, sommeliers and talent including: Guy Fieri, Tyler Florence, Masaharu Morimoto and Daniel Boulud, just to name a few!

The Monterey Peninsula is quickly becoming recognized as one of the foremost destinations for the finest in food and wine.  From the boutique wineries lining Carmel Valley to the finest craft beer; fresh, sustainable seafood of the Monterey Bay and  numerous innovative award-winning restaurants,  foodies from all over the globe are adding Monterey as a must visit destination during their travels. So pack those bags and set forth on a culinary adventure that will not disappoint.