The American Fine Wine Competition's fifth year comes to a close with Thursday night's gala dinner at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. Chef Emeril Lagasse is a featured guest, as he will be preparing the main course for the four-course dinner. Superfans have a chance to sit onstage at "Emeril's table." A predinner lottery will select a handful of guests to sit ringside as the champion of "Bam!" prepares the entrée for the evening: roasted filet mignon with brown-butter Gulf blue crabmeat, a fondue of local mushrooms with spring field peas, and a black truffle sauce.
The rest of the meal -- which will not be prepared by Lagasse -- includes a first course of shrimp and ricotta ravioli with roasted tomato, cioppino shellfish broth, and a sourdough rouille crisp; a second course of baby arugula with Zinfandel poached pear with sugared walnuts and blue cheese with grain mustard vinaigrette; and a "tribute to Florida Key lime" dessert with a black-bottom spiky Key lime pie with crystallized candied Key lime and chocolate Key lime truffles. Passed hors d'oeuvres and, of course, lots of American wine -- as in, more than 600 varietals -- also will be served at the event, which runs 6 to 11 p.m. Tickets cost $300 per person.