A Taste of the Italian Harvest Food & Wine Show

For the third year in a row, owners Maria and Tony Zacconi of Sala San Marco Banquet and Conference Centre have hosted  “A Taste of the Italian Harvest Food & Wine Show” with proceeds going to the Ottawa Food Bank. This food and wine tasting event features selected area restaurants, bakeries, as well as a number of wine and beer agents. This event has grown over the years from about 200 people to 500 this year.

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Earlier this month, I received an email from Maria with an invite to attend this event. She was also kind enough to work with us and we were able to give away two pairs of tickets to some of our lucky readers.


On Sunday, I arrived shortly after 2pm to see a line-up of people waiting in anticipation for the doors to open up. People were asked to bring a non-perishable item for the food bank: a great idea to make sure the shelves are well-stocked for the fall season. As I entered the main ballroom, I could smell the great food to come. Businesses were set up around the perimeter of the room leaving ample space to mingle, wander, savour and enjoy. Tickets for this event were all inclusive so we enjoyed all of the food samples and also the wine and beer.  Pictures are worth a 1000 words (tastes) so I’ll use them to show you what I sampled:

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Fratelli: Prosciutto, fig and gorgonzola

The Urban Pear: Smoked Bacon Polenta and Peking Duck Breast

Pietro's Corner: Display of fresh pastas

Pasticceria Gelateria Italiana: Traditional cannoli

Soup Guy Plus: Loni & Maria Italian wedding soup with chicken and meat balls

Sala San Marco: Fresh pasta demo.

The Bootleg Porchetta

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This was a great event, small enough that I was able to stop and chat with the vendors about their food. A highlight was running into Heather Holbrook, owner of Isobel Cupcakes & Cookies. I always wondered what she was up to and what happened to her after her Wellington West location closed about a year and a half ago. I was glad to hear that she was doing well and that she is still dreaming up and baking up yummy creations by joining the team at Simply Biscotti. It was also big enough that there was no shortage of food and desserts. I was stuffed in less than an hour and had no room for dinner that night. A great event for a great cause. If you didn’t get a chance to check it out this year you definitely should next year! You’ll also get to preview an amazing array of quality food and restaurants well worth a visit. To see the complete photo album, visit our Facebook page, here.

Disclosure: Ottawa Foodie Girlz were invited to attend this event but was not obligated to write about it. All opinions about the event are our own.