I was just struck by the fact that the Mustard Festival has been canceled for this year after 17 years. According to the Napa Valley Register, December 11, 2010, they’ve quoted Pat Summers, whose Sonoma-based firm Summers & McCann has produced the event since it began:

“The Napa Valley Mustard Festival is underfunded, and we do not believe it is possible to move forward with Napa Riverwalk Epicurean Marketplace on the same weekend with another prominent food and wine festival,” Summers wrote in a letter sent to wineries and others several weeks ago.

“The intent of this letter is to gather feedback and to see if there is funding from any source you may know of that would enable us to move forward, should we find some way of resolving the date conflict.

“The festival is in debt due to the economy and would require approximately $200,000 to regain a reasonable financial position and move forward.”

Like all years, I feel so fortunate to have the support of our sponsors. They’re the heart and soul of making our details be spot on. It’s worth naming them here, because of their generous support. I don’t know what I’d do without any one of them.


“The National Pork Board has maintained a mutually beneficial relationship with PS I Love You since 2007, and we look forward to serving this wine advocacy group for many years,” says Stephen E. Gerike, National Foodservice Marketing Manager. “Supporting PS I Love You is a significant partner for us, because food and wine are such a natural complement, and this event is known to turn out very delicious food and wine pairings. We want to be part of that success.”


We’re thrilled to be participating in this 2011 Dark & Delicious event!” states Leilani Carrara, West Coast Sales & Marketing of SanTásti. “Given the rich tannic structure of Petite Sirah, SanTásti is going to be a naturally refreshing palate cleansing partner, between all the great food and wine experiences.”


With this being the 50th Anniversary of Petite as a variety, D&D is very fortunate to have Kara’s Cupcakes as our official cake sponsor. “Kara’s Cupcakes is delighted to be the official icing on PSILY’s 50th year of Petite Sirah celebration,” says Kara Lind, the visionary and executive pastry chef of Kara’s Cupcakes. “Every golden anniversary deserves exquisite cake,” states Jo Diaz, PSILY’s executive director. “To have an innovative pastry chef of this talented magnitude is just the absolute icing on this event,” continues Diaz.


“While it might seem odd for two wine festivals to co-sponsor each other, it’s actually a natural happenstance. Both PS I Love You and Affairs of the Vine have events in the most passionate month of the year…February. Both Pinot and Petite Sirah are winemakers’ wines. We feel that being united in wine helps our fans to fulfill all of their wine passions, from one end of the spectrum to the other,” adds Barbara Drady, Affairs of the Vine’s Wine Evangelist.


Mario Carofanello, Director of Sales/Marketing of ZORK USA contributes, “ZORK has supported PS I Love You for years. We believe that annual food and wine event bring together so many talented, world-class winemakers who pay as much attention to their wines’ packaging as they do the making of their own wines. Some of them are using ZORK. PSILY provides Petite fans with an amazing array of Petite Sirahs with food pairings, and we heartily support their efforts.”


When I reflect on all of the work that goes into creating Dark & Delicious, I’m thankful on the production side of it that we’ve had this many companies believe strongly enough in what we’re doing to become part of it. From Mustafa Yildirim, Chef/Owner of Asena Restaurant & Catering:

“Please count us in, we have a great time every year!”

As long as this kind of enthusiastic support continues, so will D&D.