EAT IT & LIKE IT: Heritage Fire National Tour Returns to Savannah

Heritage Fire is self-described as a “premiere, live-fire, nationwide food and wine tour celebrating heritage breed livestock and heirloom produce

One of the most asked questions on the Savannah food landscape the last couple of years is “What happened to the Food and Wine Festival?” “When is it going to come back?” Unfortunately, I don’t have any answers to those questions, but I am here to share something that could be regarded as the next best thing, for now.

The Heritage Fire nationwide tour returns to Savannah on June 2,2024 and with it brings all the energy and passion for creative bites that a multi-day festival would offer. It features local chefs from across the region all preparing their dishes via live fire. It’s all outdoors and it was all exceptional. Ask anyone who was in attendance last year.

Heritage Fire is self-described as a “premiere, live-fire, nationwide food and wine tour celebrating heritage breed livestock and heirloom produce.” Which is a big draw for our chefs across the country. The tour features over a dozen stops in cities like Los Angeles, Austin, Miami, Nashville, and Atlanta. Heritage Fire started in Napa back in 2010 and was an instant hit. So much so, it was decided the concept would be toured around the country and feature chefs from every region in America.

2023 was their first stop in Savannah. Hundreds turned out at the Pit and Paddock field adjacent to the Westin Savannah Harbor for the one-day event. I hope no one is offended by me sharing this, but it was-without question—the most enthusiasm I saw coming from Savannah’s chef community ahead of a festival-type event.

It is a competition; guests are asked to vote for their favorite dish. Your Savannah winner or “Heritage Hero” in Spring 2023 was Daniel Herget of Emporium Kitchen at The Perry Lane Hotel. The chef was then invited to compete against other winners in Miami a few months back.

They’ll all tell you it’s a big deal to them. We are the beneficiaries of that creativity. Chefs scheduled to participate this year include Husk’s Jacob Hammer, Repeal 33’s Gregg Garrison and Saint Bibiana’s Derek Simcik. And yes, of course, Emporium’s Chef Daniel will be there to defend his title. As I write this, we are still three weeks out, chefs are being added to the roster almost daily. This will be a momentous event.
Tickets are $125, which include unlimited food and drink for the duration of the four-hour event. VIP Tickets are a little higher and include early access to the festival grounds and a welcome cocktail.

When you consider what dinner at an excellent restaurant will cost these days, and the fact all beverages are included as well, there’s good value here for a Sunday afternoon waterfront along the Savannah River.

It’s not officially a return of a Savannah Food and Wine Festival, but it is a nice step in the right direction. It will be great to see our region support these types of events.

For more information on the tour, it’s history and what you can expect here in Savannah, check out Heritagefiretour.com.

Jesse Blanco

One of the most recognizable personalities in the Savannah/Hilton Head Island television market, Jesse Blanco is sometimes called "Savannah's Anthony Bourdain." His 'Eat It and Like It' show has become a major regional brand in the foodie world.
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