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The Best Food and Drink Events In November and December

San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival, Chefsgiving, and Wreaths Across America


San Diego Bay Wine & Food Fest | Photo by Bradley Schweit

San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival

When: Through Nov. 17

Where: Various places

At the 16-year mark, San Diego’s biggest wine and food festival has it down. It’s a week of events throughout the city, with chefs and winemakers and authors flying in from across the country to join with local experts in the food and music scene. The big event is Saturday, the Grand Tasting, but there’s also a dinner with Michelin-star chef Luca Abbruzzino (Il Dandy), a mead tasting, Smoked: A Live Fire Experience with smoked meats and barbecue and whisky pairings, a tour through some downtown speakeasies, a Mezcal panel and tasting, you name it. Over 40 events throughout the week, 800 tasting scenarios, and over 10,000 food people taking it all in. 

Cost: Varies by event



When: Nov. 14, 6:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.

Where: Pendry San Diego, 550 J St., Downtown

The risk you run in attending this pre-Thanksgiving Thanksgiving is that your own cooking will surely not live up to it. Then again, you get to steal ideas from some of the city’s top chefs, including Brandon Sloan (Provisional Kitchen), JoJo Ruiz (Lionfish/Serea), Brian Redzikowski (Kettner Exchange), James Beard nominee Claudette Zepeda-Wilkins, Nino Zizzo (Barbusa), Jonathan Bautista (Common Theory). Davin Waite (Wrench & Rodent), Matt Gordon and Lori Saeur (Blue Bridge Hospitality), Sean McCart (Mille Fleurs), and Crystal White (Wayfarer Bread & Pastry). They’re doing riffs on Thanksgiving classics, like braised turkey legs and thighs with pork and turkey sausage gravy and biscuits, twice-baked Japanese sweet potatoes, heirloom black bean tamal, house-baked breads, roasted sunchokes and buratta gratin, sauteed chicken livers, butternut squash ravioli, and pumpkin cream cheese bread pudding. It’s all served family-style, with candles and decorations like your fanciest aunt does, and new pals. $30 of every ticket goes to the San Diego Food Bank. 

Cost: $160


Wreaths Across America

When: Through Dec. 14

Where: Mess Hall, Liberty Public Market, 2820 Historic Decatur Road, Point Loma

Veteran’s Day just passed, and San Diego’s history was built on service members, some of whom are still active, some whom we’ve lost. Mess Hall is dedicating the month to the memories of the latter. They’re serving up a spiced pear martini, and with every one purchased a wreath will be laid on the grave of a fallen member of the U.S. military at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery. It’s a partnership with Wreaths Across America, which helps honor servicemen and women we’ve lost, and honor their families. 

Cost: $20


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