San Francisco, CA  (Food News)  SF Chefs, San Francisco’s food, wine and spirits festival returns for its fourth year on July 30-August 5, 2012, with the Grand Tasting Tent events taking place in the legendary Union Square on August 3-August 5, 2012.  Presented by Visa Signature®, and produced by the Golden Gate Restaurant Association (GGRA), the celebration will highlight Northern California’s bounty of ingredients, chefs and restaurants, winemakers and wineries, bartenders and bars, breweries, farmers and artisan producers.

As SF Chefs continues to grow into its fourth year, the festival is committed to strengthening the community and continuing to increase its commitment to charities. Various events will support the San Francisco Food Bank, the Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture (CUESA), Meals On Wheels of San Francisco, the James Beard Foundation and the Golden Gate Restaurant Association Scholarship Fund.

Culinary camaraderie will take the spotlight this year and the event will highlight the unique relationships that Bay Area chefs have with their peers, purveyors and farmers. The Bay Area chef community is based on mutual assistance, education and the strengthening of the bonds that impact the culinary landscape. It’s something worth celebrating!

“As a Chef, there is no better place to call home than the Bay Area,” commented Pastry Chef, Emily Luchetti of Farallon and Waterbar and co-chair of the festival’s Chef Advisory Board. “Not only is the culinary community filled with talented individuals who care deeply about their products, we also care about one another. We appreciate and respect each other’s styles and work hard to make San Francisco one of the best culinary cities in the country.”

Grand Tasting Tent

The festival will be centered around the Grand Tasting Tent, set in San Francisco’s legendary Union Square. In the Grand Tasting Tent from Friday, August 3rd to Sunday, August 5th, attendees will savor tastes from over 100 acclaimed Bay Area chefs. Notable Bay Area chefs that have already committed to the event include Martin Yan, Craig Stoll, Emily Luchetti, Gary Danko, Charles Phan, Hubert Keller, Joanne Weir, Thomas McNaughton, Mourad Lahlou, Anthony Strong, David Lawrence, Chris Cosentino, Hoss Zare, Jen Biesty, Russell Jackson, Perry Hoffman, and Ryan Scott. In addition, attendees can enjoy specialty cocktails mixed with fresh, local ingredients by some of the city’s best bartenders, wine tastings from local and international wineries.

During the week of the festival, attendees can participate in cooking demonstrations, classes and seminars and listen to panel discussions hosted by notable industry professionals at The Westin St. Francis.  On Thursday, August 2 and Friday August 3, the Food Arts Industry Series will offer demos and panel discussions designed for hospitality industry professionals.

What’s New

There are a number of new and exciting events planned for 2012. In anticipation of the main event, on May 14th SF Chefs will host “SF Chefs at the Ballpark” in partnership with the San Francisco Giants. A pre-game tasting with Chefs, the event will highlight their takes on classic ballpark food.

SF Chefs will also host The Dinner Party Project, a series of pop-up dinners showcasing groups of chef friends collaborating for one night to create unique menus: a blend of cooking styles, a fusion of their signature cuisines or a new restaurant concept. The series will benefit CUESA.

Preview Demos at Williams-Sonoma and the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market

During the month of June, cooking demos will take place at Williams-Sonoma’s flagship store on Union Square. Throughout the month of July, “Eye on the Bay’s SF Chefs Preview Series” will be presented at CUESA’s Ferry Plaza Farmers Market.  Attendees will have the opportunity to see some of San Francisco’s favorite chefs in action amidst the bustle of the market.

For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit http://sfchefsfoodwine.com/. Ticket prices range from $25 – $160 and will be available to Visa Signature cardholders beginning May 7 and on sale to the public beginning June 1.   At all SF Chefs events, Visa Signature cardholders receive ticket discounts and special perks.

Presenting Sponsor: Visa Signature

Platinum and Gold Sponsors include: Anolon, Campari America, Dacor, Fiji, Illy Livermore Valley Wine Country, National Pork Board, Westfield, Westin St. Francis, Columbus Foods, Driscoll’s, Gemini, International Culinary Center, Pernod Ricard, Rhone Valley Wines, Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, Union Square BID, Virgin America, Wente Vineyards, William Grant.

About the Golden Gate Restaurant Association

The Golden Gate Restaurant Association (GGRA) is a non-profit trade association founded in 1936 to promote, extend and protect the interests of the broader restaurant industry, and to serve our members in the San Francisco Bay Area. Restaurants are a high-risk and generally low-profit-margin enterprise undertaken by people passionate about a wonderful cultural tradition: eating out. GGRA is a resource to help our members keep the doors open and tables set. For more information, visit www.GGRA.org.

About Visa Signature

SF Chefs is presented by Visa Signature. Visa Signature offers cardholders a range of benefits that provide special access and can save time and money.  In addition to points, miles, cash back or other premium rewards offered by Visa Signature partners, Visa Signature cardholders enjoy perks such as 24/7 complimentary concierge services, the Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection and exclusive offers for fine wine and food, travel, and sports and entertainment events.  For more information on Visa Signature and issuers offering Visa Signature visit www.visa.com/signature.

About Andrew Freeman & Co.

Andrew Freeman & Co. is a high-energy hospitality agency with a unique blend of expertise in marketing, publicity and creative services.  AF&Co offers programs that include: creative/concept development, branding, recruiting, public relations, sales/marketing, training, event management. The AF&Co team is creative, direct and fun, and focuses on the areas that they are passionate about: restaurants, wine, travel, hotels, and lifestyle personalities and products. For more information, visit AF&Co. at www.afandco.com, or follow them on Facebook or Twitter.



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