BEND, Ore.  – May 12, 2017 – The annual Cork & Barrel fundraising series of events, benefiting KIDS Center, Central Oregon’s child abuse intervention center, is delighted to announce the addition of the event’s first-ever guest chef for the Grand Cru gala fundraising dinner. Chef John Eisenhart of Nel Centro restaurant, located in the heart of the theater and arts district of Portland, has graciously agreed to partner with Cork & Barrel and “looks forward to supporting the powerful combination of food, wine, and philanthropy” at the Grand Cru gala fundraising dinner on Saturday, July 22.

After a culinary tour through Italy that included training in Lucca, Venice, and Alba, while working under internationally renowned chef, Mario Batali, Eisenhart chose Portland as his home, being drawn to the city by the people, the pace, and the fresh local produce of Oregon. Eisenhart will work in tandem with Tate & Tate, the caterer for the Grand Cru dinner, to execute a menu that is representative of Eisenhart’s global culinary background.

The Cork & Barrel team has also finalized partnerships with restaurants and chefs for A Sip of Cork & Barrel, held on Friday, July 21. Aiming to provide an interactive evening of small bites and wine tasting, A Sip of Cork & Barrel features 10, local and regional restaurants and chefs:

Robin Antonson, Director of Development for KIDS Center, relays, “between the announcement of our first-ever guest chef for the Grand Cru gala fundraising dinner, and the restaurant partnerships we have secured for A Sip of Cork & Barrel, the culinary aspect of the 2017 fundraising series is primed to offer the best in its class to all attendees.”

Cork & Barrel 2017 offers four, private winemaker dinners on Thursday, July 20; A Sip of Cork & Barrel on Friday, July 21; and the Grand Cru gala fundraising dinner and live auction on Saturday, July 22.

About KIDS Center:

Built by the community and for the community, KIDS Center is dedicated to the prevention, evaluation and treatment of all forms of child abuse. In a child-friendly environment, KIDS Center provides comprehensive medical evaluations to children who may have been abused, seeking to find out what has happened and to provide a path to healing through family support and therapeutic services. KIDS Center served 2,666 children and families in Deschutes, Crooked, and Jefferson counties, at zero cost to them, in 2016. Information about KIDS Center, including services provided and annual reports, can be found at www.kidscenter.org.

About Cork & Barrel:

A three-day fundraising series of events focusing on food, wine, and philanthropy, Cork & Barrel has grown to be the largest food and wine event in Central Oregon since it’s inception in 2013. The 2017 fundraising series features 17 wineries from Walla Walla, the Willamette Valley, and the Columbia Gorge for a “Taste of the Pacific NW.” Cork & Barrel is presented by Avion Water Company with support from Bank of the Cascades, Central Oregon Radiology AssociatesLes SchwabKendall Porsche of BendBend BroadbandBend Radio GroupUS Bank, Law Offices of Warren John West, PCBigfoot Beverages, and NW Natural. A Sip of Cork & Barrel, held on Friday, July 21, is presented by Hayden Homes. All revenue generated at Cork & Barrel directly benefits KIDS Center. Information about the Cork & Barrel fundraising series of events, can be found at http:http://corkandbarrelbackup.com/.