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Savor sun ’n’ rum or a fest of po-boys

Ming Tsai mixes things up (perhaps with a pinch of native rum?) at a Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival demo. Ming Tsai mixes things up (perhaps with a pinch of native rum?) at a Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival demo. (BARBADOS TOURISM AUTHORITY)
By Patricia Harris and David Lyon
Globe Correspondents / October 9, 2011

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NOV. 18-21


Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival: Rum has been part of Barbados’s history and economy for more than 350 years and rum punch is even the national cocktail. So it’s no surprise that rum tastings and distillery tours play a prominent role in this food extravaganza. There will, of course, be demonstrations by celebrity chefs, including Tom Colicchio and Ming Tsai, as they enjoy a few days in the sun. For a true taste of the island, check out the Bajan lunch prepared by local chefs or take advantage of special menus and deals at about 20 local restaurants. Various locations, tickets $23 to $100. 800-744-6244,

NOV. 20


New Orleans Po-Boy Preservation Festival: Folks in the Big Easy always find a reason to party, and their signature sandwich is certainly worthy of celebration. Join the throngs (about 45,000 people chowed down last year) and discover how many fillings can be sandwiched in a length of crispy French bread. Offerings might range from grilled shrimp, fried lobster, or smoked fish to hot sausage, confit pork cheek, or roast beef with pickled onions. Live music provides the beat for peripatetic dining. Oak Street at Carrollton, free admission, food for sale.

NOV. 24-26


Foods & Feasts of Colonial Virginia: For a Thanksgiving getaway, two Virginia living history museums are exploring the place of food in history. At the re-created 17th-century Jamestown Settlement, interpreters will show how Native Americans and colonists preserved foods. On Thursday and Friday, an entire pig will be processed into hams and bacon. Yorktown Victory Center’s Continental Army encampment will reveal how soldiers tried to turn dried beans, salted meat, and hard bread into edible stews. (Interpreters even offer historical indigestion remedies.) On Thursday, the Jamestown Settlement Cafe serves traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Jamestown Settlement, 2110 Jamestown Road, Williamsburg, 757-253-4659. Yorktown Victory Center, 200 Water St., Yorktown, 757-887-1776. Combination admission ticket adults $20, children ages 6-12 $10, Thanksgiving dinner adults $12.95, ages 12 and under $6.95,

DEC. 2-4


Taste of Christmas 2011: Some of London’s top chefs share ideas for holiday menus and entertaining at this jolly event that might put even Ebenezer Scrooge in a festive mood. After watching demonstrations or participating in classes, visitors can indulge in wine, cheese, and chocolate tastings and sample mini-size treats from London restaurants. It’s your chance to perk up your holiday table and complete your Christmas shopping with specialty food items and gadgets from the festival’s bazaar. ExCel London, One Western Gateway, Royal Victoria Dock, adults $28.75 in advance, $33.75 at the door, ages 6-14 $18.40/$20, food for sale. 011-44-871-230-7132, PLAN AHEAD

DEC. 13-15


The Bracebridge Dinner: This lavish holiday banquet has been a tradition since Yosemite’s Ahwahnee Hotel opened in 1927. The grand dining room is decked out as a 17th-century English manor, and diners enjoy a seven-course feast of dishes such as braised pheasant, roasted beef tenderloin, and plum pudding. Costumed performers sing carols and re-create classic entertainments of medieval and Renaissance times. Ahwahnee Hotel, Yosemite National Park, dinner $425, dinner and lodging for two starts at $953 for one night, $1,076 for two nights (dinner on selected nights, lodging options include three different hotels). 801-559-4884,


Events are sometimes canceled, rescheduled, or sold out; check online. Patricia Harris and David Lyon can be reached at Read their food and travel blog at