Hawaiʻi Food & Wine Festival and HashiLife.com to host a discussion on how the restaurant industry will be reimagined in a post-pandemic world

HONOLULU (February 4, 2021)—Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival (HFWF) and its digital content platform, HashiLife.com, will host its first virtual event of the new year. Talk Story and Pau Hana with #HFWF will cover how the food, beverage and hospitality industries will adjust to the “new normal” as the effects of COVID-19 continue to challenge the restaurant experience via Zoom on Thursday, March 4, 2021, at 3:30 p.m. (HST).

After nearly a year of quarantine, government-mandated restaurant closures, enhanced sanitization practices, employment struggles, and social distancing, what will the restaurant experience look like in 2021? Explore the reimagined restaurant experience with conversation facilitated by experts in the industry. Dr. Tim Ryan, President of Culinary Institute of America, will be the keynote speaker, addressing what the new experience will be for diners and how hospitality will need to adjust with table distancing, plexiglass screens, masks, contact tracing and temperature checks, along with recommended limits on server interaction.

Joining Dr. Ryan for Restaurant Trends 2021 – Reimagining the Restaurant Experience will be the panelists: Chris Kajioka, chef/restaurateur; Michael Mina, chef/restaurateur; Betty Shimabukuro, Crave editor for the Honolulu Star Advertiser; and Young Yun, executive director of Ment’or, a nonprofit which promotes young culinary professionals.

Moderated by Devon Nekoba of 94.7 KUMU, the panelists will engage in candid conversations about their experiences and observations of the restaurant industry during the coronavirus pandemic, discussing topics like whether fine dining will survive and how do restaurants acclimate to deliver the memorable experiences like they did pre-coronavirus?

“With all the changes COVID-19 has brought to our lives, including how we gather and eat, we hope to explore what the new dining experience might be like as our lives return to normal,” said Denise Yamaguchi, CEO of Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival. “We are excited to hear from Dr. Ryan of the Culinary Institute of America and our panelists who are top professionals, media, and leaders in the restaurant and hospitality industries.”

The event will also feature a virtual wine tasting curated and led by Master Sommelier Roberto Viernes, Ste. Michelle Wine Estates. Registered attendees can visit the HFWF website to view the three featured wines and purchase in advance to participate.

Event registration is available via www.HFWF.me for $10 with all proceeds benefiting the Kokua Ag & Culinary Fund, a program of the Hawai‘i Ag & Culinary Alliance, which supports the agricultural, culinary and hospitality industries in Hawaiʻi.

Stay connected with the Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival via www.HFWF.me or follow HFWF on Twitter/Instagram @HIFoodWineFest and Facebook at hawaiifoodandwinefestival for more information on upcoming events. Read more and discover #HashiLife at www.HashiLife.com.

About Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival
The Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival is the premier epicurean destination event in the Pacific. The Festival features a roster of more than 150 internationally renowned master chefs, culinary personalities, sommeliers, mixologists, and wine and spirit producers. Co-founded by two of Hawai‘i’s own James Beard Award-winning chefs, Roy Yamaguchi and Alan Wong, the Festival showcases culinary experiences, wine tastings, cultural engagement and exclusive dining opportunities with dishes highlighting the State’s bounty of fresh, local produce, seafood, beef, poultry and spices. Since 2011, the festival has given nearly $3 million to support local beneficiaries committed to sustainability, agriculture, and cultural and educational programs in Hawai‘i.