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Unprecedented times in Big Sur

After wrapping up a very successful 2016 festival we thought 2017 would be a piece of cake to plan… then the winter storms hit.

Entering our planning stages for the 2016 Festival, Big Sur was experiencing record levels of visitation. And then the Soberanes Fire broke out and roared through the Santa Lucia Mountain range for 83 days, becoming the most expensive fire in U.S. history. It finally was out 3 weeks before our Festival and our summer business was drastically impacted. Next, the January and February winter storms dumped nearly 100 inches of rain resulting in mudslides to the north and south. On the heels of that, on February 15th a bridge that no one except a homeless man knew existed, was condemned. The Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge, the lifeline between San Francisco and LA, was rebuilt in 7 months… a miracle and just in time for our festival.

Big Sur is built on extremes.

With all of these challenges upon us, the Big Sur Food and Wine Festival committee is thrilled and ready to host you at this years festival.
With a year under our belt as a 501 (c) (3) charitable organization, we are in a great position to continue to help our community. That is why this year is important not just to us but our neighbors to the north and south.

Then the devastating fires hit northern California and put our celebration in perspective. Our 15 months of troubles now became more of a major inconvenience even with it’s economic setbacks. Now BSFW has has decided to donate all of silent auction fundraising to our northern neighbors as they have had a hand in all of our former successes. Our hearts go out to all our friends in Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino as they now are faced with a rebuild of their own. As I sit at my desk looking across Sycamore canyon at the Chappellet property to the south, I am so grateful and proud of our committee who forged ahead in the planning of this year’s festival when we could have thrown in the towel…

Now as we watch the heroic efforts of Cal Trans to open up our Highway to the world once again, we hope you will join us for what will be our most anticipated festival yet.


Aengus Wagner, President and the BSFW crew.

We’re so hoping you’ll join us for this amazing Festival in 2018… November 1-3, 2018