A city as old as Philadelphia has hundreds of traditions. From running up the Rocky Steps to the lard pole at The Italian Market, Philly is chalk full of traditions and events perfect for visitors and native Philadelphians alike. This year, I had the distinct honor to participate in a relatively new Philadelphia tradition that brought a slice of Paris to the streets of Philadelphia. This event is none other than Diner En Blanc.
And let me be the first to say, this year’s Diner En Blanc was unequivocally and monumentally one for the books. Thousands of Philadelphians, dressed in their Sunday whites, made their way to a secret location revealed to guests a mere thirty minutes before the event egan. But I’m getting ahead of myself. For those of you who, like me, are Diner En Blanc newbies, here’s what this white-clad event is all about.
Launched in Paris in 1988 by François Pasquier and a handful of friends, Le Dîner en Blanc is now a worldwide epicurean phenomenon. Le Dîner en Blanc - Paris now attracts over 10,000 people each year and Philly is certainly on the map with over 5,000 participants. What was a “friends and word-of-mouth only” event has now grown into an international sensation celebrated on five continents.
The rules fuelling these fantastic events are, for the lack of any other term, epic. On the day of the event, guests gather at a secret location for the sole purpose of sharing a gourmet meal with good friends in one of their city’s most beautiful public spaces.
This year, all dressed up in our pre-Labor Day white, invited guests of Diner En Blanc descended upon the most iconic landmark in Philadelphia, the steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum. Thousands of tables were set up to accommodate this cabaret style dining experience. Each table with its own individual style, table decor, and food. Something found on every table however was wine, and more specifically, Apothic White.
Apothic White—the white wine with darker motives - reprised its role as the official US wine partner for the 2016 season of Le Dîner en Blanc events. For all of you fellow wine lovers - allow me to nerd out for a quick second. The different components of Apothic White blend to make a medium-bodied wine with vibrant layers of flavor. Riesling gives Apothic White its floral notes and firm acidity. Chardonnay adds texture and body, while Pinot Grigio contributes refreshing flavors of peach and apricot that lead to a crisp, balanced finish.
So imagine if you will, sipping on this incredible wine while looking out over the beautiful city of Philadelphia. If you’re having trouble using your imagination, here are some pictures from the event.
Drinking and eating was promptly followed by dancing, sparklers, and several different live performances. Philadelphia is a place of rich history and traditions - and I couldn't be happier that I was able to participate in this one.