ChefmeetsBCGrape celebrates 11 years pairing BC VQA wine and food

chef meets bc grape
Photo by Roger Allen (Judges Tim Pawsey, Sid Cross, DJ Kearney, Rhys Pender and David Scholefield with Emcee Dawn Chubai & the BCWI marketing team at the 11th Annual ChefmeetsBCGrape).

After 11 years ChefmeetsBCGrape is still going strong. With an increase in ticket sales and attendance by 90 wineries and ten restaurants, ChefmeetsBCGrape is continuing its tradition of wine and food pairing success in Vancouver.

“This event not only supports a great organization, with all proceeds going to the Arts Club Theatre Company, but it is an excellent opportunity for us to bring the British Columbia wine country experience to the city,” says Miles Prodan, President and CEO of the British Columbia Wine Institute, which organizes the event.

Held for the third year as a fundraiser for the Arts Club Theatre Company, ChefmeetsBCGrape took place at the Vancouver Convention Centre on Wednesday, September 16 with 530 wine and food enthusiasts packing in to experience the best of BC. The event, hosted by Dawn Chubai, featured 90 BC wineries pouring over 350 BC VQA wines and 10 restaurants each creating a dish to pair with a BC VQA wine.

“It was such an incredible celebration of the best of B.C.,” says Peter Cathie White, executive director of the Arts Club. “We would like to give thanks to the British Columbia Wine Institute for partnering with us again, and to all the wineries and restaurants for donating both time and expertise. We raised $37,800, which is outstanding! The proceeds will go to fostering local talent in the theatre arts.”

“This year marks the 25th anniversary of Wines of British Columbia as a modern wine industry and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the amazing quality of BC VQA wines we are producing,” says Prodan. The event offers many wineries a chance to showcase their fall releases to the public, and it’s a great opportunity for consumers to experience the versatility of 100% BC wine paired with various styles of cuisine, made from local ingredients prepared by some of Vancouver’s favourite restaurants.”

Chefs competed at the event to win two coveted awards: Best BC VQA Pairing and Best Dish. A panel of wine and food experts, including DJ Kearney, Sid Cross, Tim Pawsey, Rhys Pender and David Scholefield, tasted through each of the 10 wine paired dishes. “We’re seeing a lot more creativity with the dishes this time compared to previous years,” noted Rhys Pender MW during the tasting.

The pairing of Okanagan Crush Pad Haywire The Bub NV and LIFT Bar Grill View’s beet juice cured wild salmon gravlax, candy cane beets and foraged wild mushroom took the top Prize of Best BC VQA Pairing. “It was a beautiful use of the salmon, beets, wild mushroom, very fresh and really tapped into the ageing of The Bub Sparkling Wine – very fantastic,” described Pender.

Coming in a close second was the Burrowing Owl Cabernet Franc 2012 paired with slow braised oxtail and tomato ragout by Torafuku.

Best Dish went to Chicha Restaurant’s coconut scallop ceviche served on house made aji Amarillo Peruvian Chili rice crackers (whose dish was paired with JoieFarm Winery’s Riesling 2013). “We loved the flavor combination in this dish, so complex, so balanced! The Riesling was great with it, we just thought it was masterful!” accredited DJ Kearney in congratulating Chef Shelome Bouvette and her team on their dish.



Since 1990, the BCWI has played a pivotal role in taking BC’s wine industry from a vision to an internationally recognized niche region producing premium wines and providing exceptional wine tourism experiences.  The BCWI markets the wine and regions of BC; delivers quality trade, media and consumer tastings; and acts as the voice of BC’s wine industry by advocating to government on behalf of industry that contributes $2 billion in provincial economic growth annually.

The BCWI represents all wineries in British Columbia to grow the premium market share for the Wines of British Columbia, while driving awareness of our world-class wine tourism product – currently drawing 800,000 visitors with $476 million in tourism and tourism employment related economic impact every year.

The BCWI’s voluntary membership consists of 151 member wineries whose dues enable participation in various trade and consumer promotional events and retail marketing activities here in BC, across Canada and in select international markets, exclusively featuring BC VQA (100% BC) Wine. BCWI members produce 94% of BC VQA Wine sold in British Columbia.

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