L’Amour du Vin 2019: It was love, all right!

Knoxville folks can rock the formal attire when they want to! Here are Allison Burchett and Mike Strickland during the reception and silent auction segment of the evening.

L’Amour du Vin, in its 16th year and held this past weekend at the Knoxville Museum of Art (KMA), is among our community’s most successful fundraisers. Benefiting the museum and aided in a big way by the chefs and staff of Blackberry Farm, it features an artist, a guest chef and a vintner each year. Last year, it raised more than $500,000 for the KMA. Organizers are hoping that this year tops that.

The Saturday soiree is basically a fancy meal with great wine and tons of auction items — primarily wines and dining experiences. (L’amour du vin, after all, means “love of wine” in French.) The silent auction contains scores of options on which to bid. So many, that the offerings are grouped into three sections with staggered closings. The live auction contains 30 items, which makes for an extremely long evening. We normally advise against having so many live auction items, but who can argue with success like this?

In any case, this year’s culinary guest of honor was Steven Satterfield of Miller Union in Atlanta, an award winning chef and co-owner of the farm-to-table eatery in Atlanta’s Westside neighborhood. In 2017, after several previous nominations, Satterfield was named “Best Chef: Southeast” by the James Beard Foundation. He is fiercely committed to seasonal cooking and to supporting local farmers.

Guest vintner was Eric Baugher of Ridge Vineyards in Northern California. And the featured artist was Andrew Erdos from Brooklyn, New York. There will be more on these two in an upcoming post. Here’s a look at the glittering evening this past Saturday.

From left, David and Annie Colquitt, Dr. Kimbro Maguire and Dr. Penny Lynch during the silent auction.

The reception was jam-packed.

Wokie Massaquoi-Wicks and Stephen Wicks. He’s the curator at the Knoxville Museum of Art.

Mary Ellen Brewington, left, and state Sen. Becky Massey. Love their Mardi Gras colors!

Sheena McCall with the guest artist, Andrew Erdos.

From left, Holly and Russ Watkins with Cliff and Jacque Hawks.

Mitchell Moseley, left, and Dino Cartwright wearing the jacket of the night!

Sandy Steer and Ted Smith.

Marty and Julia Gibbs. Love the sweet pose.

Ron and Melissa Feinbaum.

From left, Craig Shelton, Susan Brown, Sam Brewington and Jeanette Carlson. Sam and Jeanette are recently engaged.

Passed appetizers: beet chips topped with goat cheese and candied lemon.

Time to go into the tent for dinner. Tables were beautiful. Look at all those wine glasses!

First course was brown butter seared sea scallop with citrus-scented Anson Mills rice grits, kumquat and fennel. Served with a 2014 Ridge Estate chardonnay from Santa Cruz Mountains. To me, this was the best bite of the evening.

(I’m going to implore the organizers of all events with gourmet foods to please, please get rid of the colored lighting when it’s time for dinner. It just ruins the look of the food.)

Thomas and Sindhu Zacharia.

Dr. Jason and Amanda Hall.

From left, artists Richard Jolley and Tommie Rush with Natalie and Jared Dowling.

Kevin McHale, left, and David Zeanah, both with American Accessories.

Second course was carved La Belle duck breast with roasted acorn squash, duck and apple sausage and toasted acorn seed and pecan crumble. It was served with a 2015 Ridge zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley.

The other ladies at our table: Julie Deucker, left, and Julia Gibbs.

Lee and Susan Hyde. Even though she’s retired as development director for KMA, she still worked her tail off on this event!

Marga and Jay McBride. Lovebirds.

Janet Testerman and Joey Creswell. (Don’t forget that she’s running for City Council and would do a great job!)

My partner in crime (and my partner in sharing a table!) John Winemiller, left, and R.J. Hinde. Doesn’t he look devilish?

Wine lovers Glenn and Dottie Irwin.

Art lovers June and Rob Heller.

Some of the guys from our table. From left, John Winemiller, Marty Gibbs and Stephen Deucker.

Melissa and Doug White. Their firm, Lexus of Knoxville, was the presenting sponsor of the evening.

This was really a beautiful dish, but you can’t tell because of the lighting. It was grilled Joyce Farms sirloin with roasted Zavels Farm carrots and chickpea panisse. It was paired with a 2015 Ridge zinfandel ponzo from Russian River Valley.

Joe and Ruth Fielden.

Caroline Farris with her dad, Kent Farris.

David Butler, center, executive director of the Knoxville Museum of Art, with Steve and Mary Ellen Brewington.

Chelsea and Nathan Osborne.

Sharon and Mark Oldham.

Jennifer and Frank Goswitz.

Back at our table, Stephen and Julie Deucker.

Auctioneer Bear Stephenson with Shirley Elder. (Hardest working man in the charity auction business!)

Ann Bailey and Dr. George Baddour.

Steve Bailey and mayoral candidate Eddie Mannis. (This is not a political endorsement on Bailey’s part. Mannis simply was working the room!)

Dessert was a spiced red wine poached pear with beet sorbet, whipped Brebis cheese and candied walnut. And more wine! The time, a 2015 Ridge zinfandel from Pagani Ranch in Sonoma Valley.

As you can see, there were tons of beautiful outfits at this event. But this one, worn by Carla May Pare of the Knoxville Museum of Art staff, was my favorite. Isn’t it beautiful?

Ted Hall of WVLT-TV was the emcee for the evening.

Vintner Eric Baugher of Ridge Vineyards at the podium. Andy Chabot, sommelier and food and beverage director at Blackberry Farm, is at right.

Here’s Chabot with Chef Steven Satterfield.

A crowd getting ready for some big spending!

Ha. Ted forgot his glasses and had to borrow Janet Testerman’s!

When we left, the ice sculpture was starting to melt, but it still was beautiful.

We were happy to see that Doug White, left, had scored some wine. Here he is bringing a case of it out to his car. He’s accompanied by Grant Boyd.

Fun night with some of the best wines ever! Cheers!

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4 Responses to L’Amour du Vin 2019: It was love, all right!

  1. AlanCarmichael, on March 7th, 2019 at 3:33 pm said:

    It was a first-class event. Congratulations to KMA on 16 years of great food and fun.

  2. Sheena McCall, on March 7th, 2019 at 9:13 pm said:

    Congratulations KMA on a wonderful event.
    Thanks to everyone who worked so hard.
    The food was delicious and the wine…..!

  3. Cynthia Moxley, on March 7th, 2019 at 9:23 pm said:

    Sheena and Alan: Agree. It was amazing!

  4. Susan Farris, on March 8th, 2019 at 12:04 pm said:

    Beautiful job of recording the highlights of the evening!

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