Friends and Wine Are a Perfect Blend at l’Eté du Vin

The Nashville Wine Auction’s 42nd annual l’Eté du Vin came to a close with the always-lively gourmet dinner and auction. Attendees arrived at the JW Marriott Nashville with backpacks and roller bags loaded with fine wines in accordance with the event’s long-standing bring-your-own-wine practice that is coupled with a share-your-wine camaraderie.

The reception featured the wines of Marchesi Antinori, the 635-year-old Italian estate honored this year. With glasses in hand, bidders seriously studied almost 450 live and silent auction items that consisted of outstanding wine-related lots, getaways, tastings and dinners. The live auction held some truly unique opportunities, such as a spot on the sidelines at the Alabama-Arkansas game and a three-hour tour on the famous America’s Cup racing yacht Stars & Stripes USA-11. Up for grabs again this year was the popular mid-auction snack break — two bottles of Cristal, two dozen Krystal cheeseburgers and 24 Krispy Kreme doughnuts.

Chef Simon Bowker created a menu inspired by Italy and the crowd’s penchant for collecting and consuming extraordinary red wine. Attendees enjoyed stuffed mushrooms Florentine and tuna tartare during the reception and savored a showstopping entrée of braised short rib osso bucco. The decadent meal concluded with a dark chocolate and pistachio semifreddo. All the while, bidding was fast and furious on the 61 lots auctioned off during the four-course meal.

This group’s reputation for benevolence is legendary, and whether it was an abundance of wine, an outpouring of generosity or some magical combination of the two, they outdid themselves this time. The evening’s proceeds broke yet another record and raised more than $2.1 million! The money will go a long way to fund the fight against cancer and support the important work done by regional agencies for patients and their families.