The St. Croix Food and Wine Experience, the annual benefit of the St. Croix Foundation, is back on the books for April despite the ongoing recovery from Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
Its 2018 theme: “Resiliency in Action.”
“It was a tough decision. We knew the community wanted to do this, so we scaled back,” said Lilli Cox, senior program officer at the St. Croix Foundation, a 501(c)3 community development organization.
Pared down to three events, this year’s culinary festival, set for April 5-7, will emphasize the “spirit of rebuilding that defines the Virgin Islands,” according to an announcement from the foundation.
“It’s important for people to see that we are resilient and that the St. Croix Food and Wine Experience is here to stay,” said Cox.
She indicated the St. Croix Food and Wine Experience has become branded as a philanthropic experience. The event encompasses more than fundraising, however.
“It’s about connecting to the community. It showcases what community development can do,” said Cox. “Community development is not exclusive of hurricane recovery.”
The St. Croix Foundation also considers the global community. A sub-theme to “Resiliency in Action” is “Shore-to-Shore.” For the 2018 Food and Wine Experience, the foundation will bring in chefs from islands impacted by hurricanes. It will serve wines from the Napa region recently ravaged by fire.
The 2018 lineup includes:
– Thursday, April 5 – bond @ balter – an invitation only event that brings together chefs, media, major sponsors, donors, and philanthropists for spirits, appetizers and conversation;
– Friday, April 6 – The Giving Table – a five-course “dining experience” that combines the sophistication of the Cork & Fork Dinner with the liveliness of the Gourmet Vintner Dinner;
– Saturday, April 7 – Wine in the Warehouse – stations of California wines for tasting, and tables of appetizers by local chefs, in Bohlke International Airways’ hangar.
Several of the festival’s customary events, such as Sunset BBQ, the Cork and Fork Dinner, and the Gourmet Vintner Dinner, have taken a hiatus for 2018 but should return next year.
“Sunset BBQ, one of our most loved events, is also the largest and most expensive to put on,” Cox said. “It was a big decision, but we finally chose to postpone it.”
Meanwhile, the St. Croix Foundation encourages the community to “stay tuned.” It will soon announce an upcoming family-friendly and affordable new event in partnership with another non-profit.
“It’s about collaboration, not competition. We’re on an isolated island; we need to work together,” said Cox.
Tickets to and more information about the St. Croix Food and Wine are available by calling 1-340-773-9898 or online at www.stxfoodandwine.com.