Wines win for groups

Fundraisers help sew seeds for good

Posted: February 25, 2018 at 1 a.m.

NWA Democrat-Gazette/CARIN SCHOPPMEYER Dan Comstock (from left), Chef Miles James, Jason Willems, Audre Darling and James and Angie Graves welcome guests to Ooh! La,la! on Feb. 8 at The Garden Room in Fayetteville.

Jackson L. Graves Foundation supporters gathered Feb. 8 at The Garden Room in Fayetteville for the ninth annual Ooh! La, la! chocolate and wine pairing. The chocolate and wine pairing dinner was orchestrated by Chef Miles James of Miles James Hospitality and Jason Willems, Diamond Beverages wine expert. The two collaborated in pairing the two elements to produce a three-course dinner that highlighted the best of both with wines from Chronic Cellars and Jamieson Ranch Vineyards.

Proceeds from the tasty evening will help support foundation projects that include the neonatal intensive care sibling playroom at Arkansas Children's Hospital in Little Rock and the construction of the Healing Garden at Willow Creek Women's Hospital in Johnson. The garden includes four sitting areas and a children's flower picking "Yes Zone." The completed garden will feature a labyrinth, memorial garden and a fountain.

Ooh! La, la!

Who: Jackson L. Graves Foundation

What: The chocolate and wine pairing featured a three-course dinner.

When: Feb. 8

Where: The Garden Room in Fayetteville

Next: Red, White and Baby Blue — June 29

Information: (479) 466-8339, (479) 799-9592 or

Wine Opener

Who: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation — Arkansas Chapter

What: The benefit helped the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Arkansas raise some $370,000.

When: Feb. 9

Where: John Q. Hammons Center in Rogers

Next: Northwest Arkansas Great Strides Walk, May 5

Information: (501) 371-0233 or

Among those tasting and toasting were Pat O' Brien, Tim Hudson, Juli and Clay McWhorter, Debbie and Tim Ogg, Michelle and Steve Wilson, Richard Clifton, Ann and Steve Zega, Sheryl and Greg Harton, Kelly and Scott Syer, Matthew Crouch and Sara and Richard Goodrum.

Wine was also flowing for more than 1,000 guests at the Northwest Arkansas Wine Opener on Feb. 9 at the John Q. Hammons Center in Rogers. The benefit helped the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Arkansas raise some $370,000.

Proceeds from the wine tasting event will go to support research for medications to treat the genetic disease, improve the quality for life for those with cystic fibrosis and find a cure.

Some of the more than 100 wines featured at the 11th annual benefit included varieties from E&J Gallo Winery, Constellation Brands, Deutsch Family Wine and Spirits, Moet-Hennessey, Ste. Michelle Vinyards, Treasury Wine Estates and Trinchero Family Estates.

Next up for the group is Northwest Arkansas Great Strides on May 5 at J.B. Hunt Park in Springdale.

Those sipping in support of the cause included Sharon and Ed Belto, Lee and Lauren Duff, Donna and Barry Fallin, Kathy and Joe Farnan, Lacie Jones, Sarah Grabinski, Ross Sandefer, Sarah Bunch, Shauna Collins, Tamie Cobern and Rosemary Kohrig.

For more event photos --

Columnist Carin Schoppmeyer can be reached by email at

NAN Profiles on 02/25/2018