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Cook with California – A food and wine pairing competition for chefs, restaurateurs and sommeliers

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‘I love the best of California cooking and the best of California wine, so I can’t wait to see what chefs in Britain suggest to accompany west coast wines.’ – Jancis Robinson

The California Wine Institute devised Cook with California for chefs, restaurateurs and sommeliers across the UK to submit what they consider are the best pairings of food and California wines. The competition is open to teams of two participants – one chef and one sommelier.

Each entry should detail a three-course menu with each course matched to a specific California wine currently available in the UK. Teams will propose three courses from the following five options: first course, second course, main course, dessert* and cheese course.

(*The late Margrit Mondavi always used to say that California Pinot was the ideal accompaniment to chocolate, so we would love this combination to be considered.)

‘Any competition that marries wine and food and a better understanding of their interaction is to be applauded, especially one that involves Californian wine. Many European wines need understatement and discretion from the chef: with its vibrancy and bold flavours, Californian wine is a boon to any cook and we hope to see a comparable degree of colour and imagination in the menus.’ – Rowley Leigh

The menu and wine choice pairings must be submitted with a short description of the courses and why the selected wine makes a great pairing.

The first prize is a trip to California, where you will visit producers and wineries, and experience a stage in a top restaurant kitchen. There are also four prizes for finalists – each will win a 12-bottle case of super-premium Californian wine.

Enter here and scroll to the bottom of the page to go directly to the entry form.

Submission deadline: 3 August 2021.

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