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Move On Up Mississippi to Host Oxford Bourbon Festival and Auction

Chef Kelly English and Stefanie Watkins. Photo courtesy of Move on Up Mississippi Foundation.

Chef John Currence and the Move on Up Mississippi Foundation are bringing the inaugural Oxford Bourbon Festival and Auction to Oxford May 18-20.

The immersive three-day celebration of all things bourbon features private dinners by acclaimed chefs, exclusive tastings, incredible music and a live auction of rare and one-of-a-kind bourbons and premium experiences. 
The festival kicks off with a series of private dinners. Cooking in some of the most historic and beautiful homes in Oxford, the bourbon-themed meals with paired wines and spirits are prepared by distinguished chefs from around the country, including James Beard Award winners and nominees. The official talent lineup can be found at OxfordBourbonFest.com. The talent is not limited to the kitchen as the soulful and dynamic stylings of The War and Treaty will take center-stage for an incredible live performance at The Lyric Theatre.
The festivities continue with a walk-around Bourbon Tasting Saturday afternoon where attendees can sample premium bourbons, meet distillers and whiskey producers and enjoy small bites by local chefs. Attendees will also have the opportunity to bid on an impressive lineup of items Saturday. Some of the most sought-after names are those on the bottles of the fine and rare bourbons being sold at the live auction with more than a dozen impossible-to-get whiskies, including exclusive and hand-picked bottlings of Pappy Van Winkle (20 years old), Willett (13 years old) and Jefferson’s “Presidential Select” (18 years old) – just to name a few. These limited releases, custom selections and single barrel whiskeys are from the private collections of celebrities, chefs and notable bourbon aficionados. The auction also includes non-bourbon related items like VIP access at the annual Billy Reid Shindig, world-class music experiences, behind-the-scenes distillery tours and more. The festival concludes with a Sunday morning “Milk Punch” brunch at Bouré on the historic Oxford square.
“We want this to be the biggest and ‘baddest’ bourbon festival in the country,” Currence said. “In our first year, we’re off to really impressive start. The lineup of talent—in every aspect of this event—is at such a high-level, that this truly is a ‘can’t miss’ event for any bourbon or food lover.”
Ticket prices range from $35 for the Bourbon Tasting to $250 for each private dinner; VIP passes are also available. Additional information can be found at OxfordBourbonFest.com, and tickets can be purchased at OxfordBourbonFest18.eventbrite.com.
Proceeds from the festivities benefit Move on Up Mississippi, a non-profit organization founded by Currence, dedicated to improving the lives of Mississippi’s underserved children.


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