Winchester’s fall foodie events cast a spell of deliciousness

Abracadabra, and fall is here—and Winchester greets the month with a little hocus pocus for foodies. Celebrate fall foods with four different culinary classes, two food heritage festivals and one trail winding through Beer Cheese Country—open year-round but particularly scenic during leaf peeping season.

Cooking Classes at Harkness Edwards Vineyards

Hocus Pocus Charcuterie Class, 12-1:30 p.m. Oct. 1: Put down your broomsticks and pick up your boards for a class in the art of styling charcuterie with a Halloween theme. Class includes learning the basics of charcuterie, including selection of products, and assembling the board with meats, fruits, cheeses and grains. $57/person, includes a glass of wine. This class repeats on Oct. 8 (12-1:30 p.m.) and Oct. 22 (2:30-4 p.m.).

Apple Butter Pork Chops Cooking Class, 2:30-4 p.m. Oct. 1: A meal with all the fall feels (and tastes) and a chance to level up your cooking skills with guided instructions each step of the way. $57/person, includes a glass of wine.

Hocus Pocus Cookie Decorating Class, 2-3:30 p.m. Oct. 8: Too spooky to eat? Not these sweet confections! Learn the basics of the royal icing technique for decorating six Halloween-themed cookies. (Royal icing is typically made with a mix of confectioners’ sugar, meringue powder and water that dries hard, allowing for the layering of assorted colors to create intricate designs.) $47/person, includes a glass of wine.

Halloween Cupcakes Class, 12-1:30 p.m. Oct. 22: Take home a dozen decorated cupcakes just in time for the witching hour. The class includes step-by-step instructions and a glass of wine. $57/person.

Foodie Festivals

Heritage Food Festival, Oct. 12-15: Mt. Folly Farm invites you to “build a feast from the ground up”—literally—beginning with attendees building an outdoor cooking space with their own hands. During this four-day festival, participants will set up camp; kill and process a goat for meat; make cheese; make bread from whole grains grown and ground on Mt. Folly Farm, ferments and kraut; and incorporate herbs, nuts and other wild ingredients they have foraged into a shared feast that takes place on Saturday night.

Tickets range from $25 for individual workshops, including Thursday’s Meat 101 Workshop, to $60 for a full festival ticket. (A $10 ticket for the Friday night band only is also available). See details at the event website. More information is included in Winchester’s October newsletter.

FannyFest Cider Festival, 12-5 p.m. Oct. 14: Presented by Abettor Brewing Company and Winchester Black Heritage & Historical Society (WBHHS), this inaugural free-admission festival celebrates Winchester entrepreneur Fanny Cole, an African American woman who was the city’s first legal cider maker. The event will include Abettor Brewing’s cider, food trucks, live music and a storyteller who will share Fanny’s story.

Born sometime in the early 1770s, Fanny married Aaron Cole in 1827—the year he purchased her freedom—and helped run a grocery and sundries shop until her death in 1849. Proceeds from the event will go to the WBHHS to fund scholarships for Clark County High School seniors. More information is included in Winchester’s October newsletter.

Beer Cheese Trail, open year-round: The Birthplace of Beer Cheese is cause for an indulgent celebration any time of year, but fall makes the trail even more colorful with the changing leaves and the air crisper with cooler temps.

Download the Beer Cheese Trail Digital Passport (Cheese Log) and journey to more than a dozen restaurants to explore signature beer cheese dishes like Steak and Beer Cheese Omelet, Beer Cheese Biscuits served with gourmet jellies or preserves or a slice of Kentucky Proud sausage, Kentucky Hot Ham & Beer Cheese, Beer Cheese Quesadilla, Winchester Hot Brown Pizza, Shrimp and Beer Cheese Grits, Beer Cheese Nachos, a Beer Cheese Platter and more—enough to satisfy your beer cheese craving from morning to midnight snack.

Have your beer cheese and eat it, too—and learn about Winchester/Clark County attractions and history along the way. Like Pilot Knob (near Pilot View Mini Mart), where Daniel Boone had his first look at Kentucky . . . the Winchester Opera House, now Loma’s at the Opera House, where Helen Keller once spoke . . . and Hall’s on the River, where the story of beer cheese began 90 years ago. . .