Featured Participants

Jujube with LIOCO Wines


LIOCO is a creation born of the friendship between Matt Licklider and Kevin O’Connor.  Their vision was of a “New World negociant”, inspired by the more restrained wines of Europe and California wines of the 1980’s.  Striving to make wines that favor nuance over power, they christened their winery “LIOCO”, a combination of their last names.

The two met in 2001, when Kevin was wine director at Spago-Beverly Hills, and Matt was the national sales director for North Berkeley Imports. The alley behind the restaurant served as a makeshift tasting area and the rain gutter as a spit bucket. Their friendship was immediate and easy, and it didn’t take long for conversations about Burgundy, Piedmont, and Rhone to evolve into ideas about winemaking here at home.

They are now preparing for their tenth vintage. The idea dreamed up in the alley behind Spago has become their daily adventure. Sometimes on foot, sometimes in all-wheel-drives; they are always searching for distinctive California vineyards. All of the fruit comes from real people working their land in real places. The resulting wines harken back to simpler time, or as they say: vintage California.

LIOCO currently produces wine from three counties—Sonoma, Mendocino, and Santa Cruz. The focus is on Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Carignan with an emphasis on older vines, sites with tougher soil, and selects clones. Sometimes the hunt for Pinot Noir uncovers other treasures like a coastal Syrah vineyard or a rare, mid-century planting of Valdiguie. They make room for such discoveries.




Opened in 2005 by award-winning chef Charlie Deal, Jujube is a modern Asian fusion restaurant and memorable dining experience in Chapel Hill, NC.
After working for some of the West Coast's best restaurants, Charlie left his native California to bring his vision for dynamic Asian fusion cuisine here to the Triangle, an ever-growing foodie destination in America. As a result, Jujube's cuisine is rooted in the flavors of China and Vietnam, distilled and whimsically refined with western sensibilities.

Charlie believes there are two parts to creating an inspired dining experience. One is getting out of the way and allowing tradition and the beauty of nature to show through, and the other is putting your individual stamp on each dish. Jujube does both by weaving classic Asian dishes along with one-of-a-kind creations born from our hearts into one, eclectic menu.

Recently named to Best Chefs America, Charlie credits his mother with inspiring him to take up cooking. Always precociously into food, his mother helped him create "Charlie Deal's Cookbook" when he was just 5 years old.

At age 15, Charlie began working in restaurants in his native Northern California. It was then that Charlie fell in love with the culture of the business and the beauty of finding creativity in the day in/day out life of an eatery.
Now, as the Chef and Owner behind Jujube, Charlie is dedicated to reinventing dynamic dining here in North Carolina.



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