Announcing Corks & Chefs at Linn Park, April 27-28. Early bird tickets on sale through April 5!

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So much food, so little time. Photo submitted

If you’ve ever experienced Corks & Chefs at the Magic City Art Connection, you probably don’t need any convincing on why you should go. Go ahead and get your tickets now. You know it’s unlike any tasting event in Birmingham. But if you’re new here, simply calling it a “tasting event” won’t cut it. So, I’m breaking it down for you. Here’s everything you can expect from this year’s 22nd annual Corks & Chefs: A Taste of Birmingham.

How Did Corks & Chefs Come to be?

The Magic City Art Connection (MCAC) began 36 years ago, and it didn’t take long for food and drink to become key ingredients to the festival’s success.

“We always knew that food and drink were integral to any outdoor festival experience. We wanted to elevate what was possible at MCAC, and deepen the synergy and natural complement that the culinary arts have with the visual arts.”

Alex Kunzman, PR & Marketing Director
Very excited to try allllll the cocktails. Photo submitted

So, they started exploring an opportunity to integrate a tasting event at MCAC that would highlight great Birmingham restaurants, chefs, and wine distributors.  The tasting event also helps to raise money for the festival and its arts educational programming serving over 1000 local school kids and families at the Imagination Festival. In 1996, the inaugural Corks & Chefs event was born— the first of its kind in Birmingham.

“Corks & Chefs has grown so much from those early days when 6 restaurants were featured. With Birmingham quickly becoming a food destination city, we are now able to showcase a minimum of 16 local favorites and have added in craft breweries, cocktail bars, distributors, wineries, and opportunities for experiential special tastings.”

How does it work?

Hard at work making samples for all the hungry festival goers! Photo submitted

The Corks & Chefs event starts at 12 PM and ends at 3 PM on April 27 & 28. There are four ticket options: General One Day or Combo (Sat/Sun) Tickets, and VIP One Day and Combo (Sat/Sun) tickets.

General tickets include:

  • one (1) taste at each featured restaurant
  • one (1) cocktail selection
  • unlimited wine and beer sampling
  • a stemless glass
  • admission to the MCAC art festival

VIP tickets include:

  • one (1) taste at each featured restaurant
  • two (2) cocktail selections
  • unlimited wine and beer sampling
  • a stemless glass
  • admission to the MCAC art festival
  • + one (1) Center Room Guided Tasting Seminar
One might not be enough. *drools* Photo submitted

The Center Room seminars are exclusive to VIP ticket holders and gives patrons an expertly guided tasting experience led by some of Birmingham’s popular tastemakers. You can purchase Early Bird Tickets from March 22-April 5, or Advance Tickets from April 6-26.

Who’s Going to be There?

The programming keeps getting better and better too. Here’s who you can expect to see:

It’s serious business over here. Photo submitted

2019 Participating Restaurants… so far

  • Ocean
  • Arrington at Pursell Farms
  • Brick & Tin
  • Carrigan’s Public House
  • Chez Lulu & Continental Bakery
  • EastWest
  • Eli’s Jerusalem Grill  
  • Habitat Feed & Social
  • Root to Tail
  • Roots & Revelry
  • The Essential
  • The Rougaroux
  • The Southern Kitchen & Bar
  • Tropicaleo

2019 Cocktail Bars:

  • Paper Doll
  • The Atomic Lounge
  • The Collins Bar
  • Queens Park
Wiiiiine tiiiime. Photo submitted


  • International Wines
  • Ozan Vineyards
  • more to come…


  • Interstellar Ginger Beer & Exploration Company
  • more to come…

Seminars, Guided Tastings and Demos:

  • A cocktail seminar by the 2018 US Bartender of the Year, Laura Newman, owner of the new downtown cocktail bar, Queens Park.
  • A Taste Through History of its whiskey bourbons with Old Forester
  • A tasting duel with Chef Ben Vaughn of Root to Tail and his Pot Stirring Radio show co-host, Chase Barnett, also known as the Bitter Socialite.
  • A punch seminar by rockstar Birmingham bartender, Steva Casey, Tiki by the Sea and The Atomic Lounge
  • more to come…

Planning on attending? Grab your early bird tickets now. Let us know what you’re most looking forward to, and tag us (@BhamNow) in all your Corks & Chefs social media posts!

Sponsored by:

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Hannah Chambley
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