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Food, History, and Spirits at the Agave Heritage Festival

The week-long Agave Heritage Fetival features UNESCO seminars, tequila pairings, and heritage dinners.

April 14, 2017

Upcoming Events

What: 2017 Agave Heritage Festival
When: April 28-May 7, 2017
Where: Various locations in Tucson, AZ

If you have any interest in Tucson’s designation as a UNESCO World Cty of Gastronomy, tequila, or simply having a good time, you’re sure to find something to do at this year’s week-long Agave Heritage Festival. Spearheaded by talented folks such as Todd Hanley (Hotel Congress, Maynards), award-winning chef Janos Wilder (Downtown Kitchen+Cocktails, The Carriage House), and Gary Nabhan (Native Seeds/SEARCH, University of Arizona) the 7-day event is packed with events ranging from UNESCO seminars and garden tours to tequila parirings and heritage dinners.

The 2017 Agave Heritage Festival boasts over 20 incredible agave-centered events, making it easy to see why Bravo TV named it one of the 7 best boozy festivals around the world. Yes, the world. Right up there with Oktoberfest, right in your own backyard. If that doesn’t compell you to go, this sampling of events from the 2017 Agave Heritage Festival is sure to gear you up for the annual event:

Mission Garden Presents The Opening of The Fire Pit (April 29): Jesus Garcia, Paul Fish, and Carolyn Niethammer fire up the agave pit and share tastes of roasted agave, demonstrate how to cook it at home, and provide spirit tastings, of course! Tickets here.

Gentry Award Lecture on Mezcal Origins & Future (May 3): At this free lecture, held in the Haury Auditorium at University of Arizona, Ana Valenzuela presents an overview of mezcal research & conservation in Mexico. Show up and learn about the history and future of mezcal!

Tucson City of Gastronomy Seminar (May 4): Head to Maynards Market & Kitchen Drawing Room to learn more about Tucson’s designation as the first UNESCO City of Gastronomy in the United States and how the native agave plant continues to be a source of inspiration to our food, local products and economics. Spearheading the seminar is Gary Nabhan, renowned nature activist and founding director of the Center for Regional Food Systems and Aaron Defeo, celebrated mixologist and founder of the Tucson chapter of the USBG.

MEZcrawl (May 4):  Explore downtown through the many takes on Mezcal. Starting at Hydra, you will map your way across participating bars: Good Oak Bar, Rbar, Penca, Borderlands Brewery and Charro Steak. Join this event for an exciting night on the town filled with agave spirits, great cocktails, and paired lite bites.

Agave Heritage Dinner (May 5): Relax on the Maynards Market & Kitchen Patio while culinary giants Chef Janos Wilder and Chef Brian Smith collaborate to create a Sonoran-style 4-course dinner with agave based cocktail pairings just for you. Proceeds from this dinner benefit Native Seeds/SEARCH.

Fibers, Tequila and Fun (May 6): Pay for admission to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum and participate for free in this program, which explores local resources (such as Agaves) that native peoples of the Sonoran Desert region have traditionally used for food, beverage, medicines, fibers, and more. Then, spend the rest of the day exploring the wonderful exhibits at the Arizona-Sonoran Desert Museum.

Agave Heritage Brunch (May 7): End this year’s Agave Heritage Festival celebration at The Carriage House with a culinary fusion 4-course brunch. Chef Janos Wilder and Chef Anthony Coluci will create a dining sensation, paired with agave-inspired mimosa flights. Proceeds from this brunch benefit Mission Garden.

These 7 events are just a small taste of the 2017 Agave Heritage Festival happenings. Find tickets for these events (and many more) here.

See you there!

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