Located on the island of Nantucket, this boutique experience of world class wines and award winning food will forever change you. Over the past 21 years, the Nantucket Wine & Food Festival has become one of the most celebrated wine and food events in the country.
MUST BE 21 OR OLDER TO PURCHASE TICKETS TO ALL NWF EVENTS. VALID ID REQUIRED FOR ENTRY
Bubbles & Claws
1:00pm - 3:00pm
50 Easton St.
Champagne and Lobster over-looking Nantucket Harbor - a dreamlike experience! Join us for this decadent pairing featuring passionate personalities that will keep you engaged and entertained. Veuve Clicquot Winemaker, Gaëlle Goossens will take you on a journey through the distinct qualities of three Veuve Clicquot Cuveés: Yellow Label, Vintage and Rosé. Paired perfectly with this bubbly presentation are lobster dishes created by Chefs David Blessing of Newport Beach House (Newport RI) and Carolyn Johnson of Mooncusser Fish House (Boston). These talented luminaries will lead us in lively conversation with a delicious combination of two of our most cherished indulgences: Champagne and Lobster.
David Blessing, Vice President Culinary Arts and Development, Longwood Venues and Destinations
Growing up in Portland, ME, carrots were king and a minor obsession with carrot cake began. As a boy, it was not unusual for him to feign illness, skip school and bake the day away. Life revolved around food, the gardens it came from and the shared act of cooking for the family. Both David’s grandmothers were exceptional cooks; one a true Maine Downeaster and the other from Abruzzi, Italy. They taught him to respect the land and appreciate its abundance, and that the communal sharing of food is the quintessential and most powerful way to bring people together.
Before launching his career, Blessing worked in many capacities in his father’s restaurants. His professional career in Boston began 30 years ago. He spent 13 years with the Four Seasons Hotel company in Boston and San Francisco; both 5 Star, 5 Diamond Hotels and held positions as Executive Chef, Executive Sous Chef and Chef de Cuisine of the nationally acclaimed AAA, 5 Diamond restaurant, Aujourd’hui. He then moved to California as part of the leadership opening team of the highly anticipated Four Seasons where he worked alongside renowned Chefs, Restaurateurs and Hoteliers. In 2006 Chef Blessing partnered with Columbus Restaurant Group, working with longtime mentor and restaurateur, Jamie Mammano at Sorellina, Mistral and as Executive Chef opening L’Andana Grill in Burlington, MA.
Chef Blessing joined Longwood Venues + Destinations in 2010, bringing with him not just experience and his ensuing passion but also a unique perspective on private-event dining. It is both a daunting task and extraordinary feat to provide every diner a singular and incredible food experience when feeding hundreds of guests. Chef David created and oversees the culinary program for Longwood’s five properties in Boston, Brookline, Cape Cod and Newport, Rhode Island. His cooking style retains his focus on pristine and seasonal ingredients highlighting the local bounty of New England while bringing the same personal connection to the food he had as a child to his communal table today.
Carolyn Johnson, Chef, 80 Thoreau & Mooncusser Fish House
Over the last two decades, Carolyn has left her mark on Boston’s culinary scene. From rocking the wood grills cooking Stan Frankenthaler’s Asian-inspired cuisine at Salamander in Cambridge to spending time in the kitchen at Icarus, Chris Douglass’ former New American restaurant in the South End of Boston, Carolyn has honed a breadth of knowledge and expertise.
Before joining forces with partners Ian Calhoun and Vincent Vela to open 80 Thoreau in 2011, Carolyn held the position of Chef de Cuisine at the highly praised Rialto Restaurant in Harvard Square. Over the course of a seven-year tenure under acclaimed Chef Jody Adams, Carolyn climbed her way up through the ranks at Rialto and worked closely with Chef Adams on the restaurant’s re-conception in 2007. The experience helped define Carolyn’s understanding and appreciation of how to effectively run the kitchen at a bustling restaurant.
The opening of 80 Thoreau, a progressive New American restaurant located in historic Concord, Massachusetts, was met with great praise. The team earned a three star review from The Boston Globe’s food critic as well as countless awards, including Boston magazine’s “Best New Restaurant, West of Boston.” In addition, Carolyn’s attention to detail and passion for the craft earned her the recognition of a Food & Wine “People’s Choice” finalist for three consecutive years. Thriving to work closely with the people who grow and produce the food she serves, everyone from the small organic vegetable farmers and mushroom foragers to the shellfish growers, Carolyn is committed to preparing locally sourced cuisine. Under Carolyn’s expertise, 80 Thoreau’s menu consistently showcases creative, seasonal dishes that embellish New England ingredients and traditions with French technique. For the last six years, she has crafted fabulous menus for 80 Thoreau and is proud to bring this same level of dedication to Mooncusser Fish House.
Serving as the mastermind behind Mooncusser’s culinary program, Carolyn has created and executed a menu that highlights locally sourced species of fish, alongside sustainable alternatives. Featuring a diverse array of seafood dishes, Carolyn’s menu emphasizes the natural beauty of fish, complementing local, seasonal ingredients and artful presentation. Every dish at Mooncusser is treated with the utmost care and quality preparation.
When she’s not the kitchen, Carolyn is an active participant in Chefs Collaborative, an organization devoted to building connections among chefs and food professionals to move the hospitality industry forward. Additionally, she has been involved with Women Chefs and Restaurateurs, Share Our Strength and the Greater Boston Food Bank. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, hiking, and home brewing beer with her husband.
Gaëlle Goossens, Winemaker, Veuve Clicquot
Gaëlle Goossens was born in Reims in 1985. She grew-up in the countryside of Champagne and loved spending time in the vineyard with her grandmother from whom she learned wine-growing basics and tricks. From her parents both doctors, she picked up the love of travelling, flying across the world with them for medical missions. From Africa to Asia, Gaëlle is particularly delighted in travelling.
Having finished high school and an undergraduate degree in sciences, Gaëlle left for Australia where she spent two years studying Foreign Politics at the University of Queensland. Thus she acquired strong skills on international relations and considered them for later on.
Still close to the wine universe and notably devoted to Champagne, she came back to France, decided to get back to her roots and underwent a postgraduate in Biochemistry and Oenology. She graduated from the National Diploma of Oenology in 2012.
After several experiences in wine grower families and Houses of Champagne, she was offered the job of Deputy head of production by a prestigious House of Champagne. She spent five years there taking care of the wine making process both in stainless steel and wood styles and managed a team of wine technicians all year long. With her expertise, she decided to step forward and use this experience in development and communication.
She joined Veuve Clicquot and the Development, Innovation and Communication of Oenology team led by Pierre Casenave mid-2016. Gaëlle is responsible for several projects from technical improvements in wine-making to communication events, she can handle multi-purpose issues.
During the harvest, she is in charge of the Veuve Clicquot pressing centre in the Côte des Blancs and of the Chardonnay vinification.