Must be 21 years of age or older.
Join Sommelier Erica Archer with Chefs Ilma Lopez, Damian Sansonetti and Cory LaBrecqce of acclaimed Portland, Maine restaurant Chaval, for a gorgeous scenic wine sail on board the 74-foot sailboat, The Frances, built by her Captains and crew on Portland's waterfront as you explore five incredibly delicious wines ... each paired with delicious food from these extremely talented Chefs.
You're in for an incredible wine education and food experience as you sail through Maine’s beautiful Casco Bay with scenic views of Maine lighthouses, islands, and waterways .. all while indulging in a wine class. You'll walk away with knowing a lot about wine, how regional influences impact wine styles and quality, gain confidence knowing how evaluate, select and pair wines and describe what you smell and taste. And no doubt you will taste and learn a lot about the incredible food that these incredible chefs have prepared for you.
The menu will be available close to the date of the event as these Chefs takes his inspiration from only the freshest local ingredients. Due to the nature of this event we regret that we cannot accommodate food substitutions.
Taste and learn about some delicious Spanish wines you'll be thrilled to have in your repertoire
Enjoy delicious paired food paired with each wine and prepared by the incredible Chefs of Chaval
Learn the basics of tasting or take your wine knowledge to the next level
… all while sailing on the incredible 74’ Sailboat, Frances, built by her Captain and crew on the Portland waterfront.
Chef Ilma Lopez has worked in some of the most demanding and rewarding kitchens in the industry, such as DB Bistro, Corton, Tailor, El Bulli, Café Boulud, and Le Bernardin. When she left New York City to the quieter reaches of Maine, Lopez found a new terrain she couldn’t resist. Arriving with a mastery of colors, flavors, textures, and spices—and a seasoned ability to work under pressure—Lopez makes classic dishes her own, with attention to micro-detail and thoughtful twists. For her work, Lopez earned a 2014 StarChefs Coastal New England Rising Star Pastry Chef Award, Has been a multiple-time James Beard top-Chef finalist, and you may have seen her name in the September issue of Bon Appetit Magazine highlighting her incredible talents when naming Portland, Maine as their pick for Restaurant City of The Year.
Chef Damian Sansonetti, a Pittsburgh native, grew up exploring fresh, local ingredients, making pasta with his grandmothers, curing meats with his grandfather, and assisting his father in the family kitchen. A career in food was practically his birthright. Graduating from the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute, Sansonetti worked at Nantucket’s Brant Point Grill and Pittsburgh’s Steelhead Grill, moving to New York to open Heartbeat in the W Hotel. Sansonetti met Daniel Boulud while working at Shallots in Midtown and eventually took a position at Boulud’s DB Bistro Moderne. Training rigorously under Chef Olivier Muller, Sansonetti became chef de banquet at Daniel and then sous chef under Jean Francois Bruel. Promoted to executive chef of Bar Boulud in 2008, Sansonetti was named a 2009 StarChefs.com Rising Star. Now ensconced in the burgeoning food scene of Portland, Maine, Sansonetti’s partnered with his wife, Pastry Chef Ilma Lopez (a 2014 StarChefs.com Rising Star Pastry Chef and nominated in 2018 for a James Beard Award as Outstanding Pastry Chef), to open their Italian fine dining restaurant Piccolo and in 2017 Chaval.
Sous Chef Cory LaBrecque is currently active as Sous Chef at Chaval and for the past year has been helping to support the restaurant through its prosperous second year of operation. Having spent the last 17 years working in Portland he is really enjoying growing with the city’s ever evolving culinary scene. Most notably before finding his way to Chaval Cory worked his way through the ranks at Miyake and instigated his love for seafood. In 2016 Cory was fortunate enough to make the trek to Japan. There he was able to attend Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo, the largest of its kind in the world. Born and raised in Maine Cory is a true Maine-ah by heart; spending winters in the mountains enjoying the snow and summers on the coast. These experiences outdoors is something Cory cherishes and strives to bring creatively into the kitchen.
Archer is a true oenophile, having obtained high levels of certification in her field. In 2010, she was awarded the Wine Spirit and Education Trust Level Three Advanced Certification in Wines and Spirits (with merit), became a Sommelier in the American Court of Master Sommeliers, and received her Certified Wine Professional award from the Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, California. Erica is the principal of Wine Wise, a wine education and events service and is skilled at creating truly creative and memorable wine experiences that take guests beyond a typical tasting with her intimate understanding of what makes each wine unique. And she’ll do it with her trademark sense of humor.
The menu will be available close to the date of the event as Chef takes his inspiration from only the freshest local ingredients. Due to the nature of this event we regret that we cannot accommodate food substitutions.
Where do we meet?
We depart from the Maine State Pier, located at at 56 Commercial Street (where Commercial Street meets Franklin Street). You’ll receive a more detailed email a few days before your event. Please refer to our FAQ page for answers to questions that you may be wondering about.
Because of our size, cancellations affect us significantly. If we are able to re-sell your tickets we can refund your ticket price minus the $10.00 credit card transactions we have to pay OR reschedule you to a different date that has availability (there is no credit card transaction fee in this case). You are always welcome to send a friend or family member in your place or sell your own tickets. Just make sure we have the ticket holder's email address so we can send them the event notifications so they are aware of where to find us and any day-of weather related notifications. There are no refunds or reschedules for no shows or if we are not able to resell your tickets. Makes sense, right?