The Sushi & Sake festival returns to Pechanga in 2022: what you need to know

TEMECULA, Calif. — The Pechanga Resort Casino is gearing up for its second Sushi & Sake Festival, scheduled for Saturday, July 9 from noon to 4 p.m. for VIP pass holders and 1 to 4 p.m. for general admission guests.

Immerse yourself in Japanese culture as Pechanga’s master chefs lead the afternoon filled with premium Japanese sake, homemade sushi by Pechanga’s master chefs, a silent auction, and live music.

The Pechanga sushi masters prepare a feast for the eyes and the taste buds. (Photo by Pechanga Resort and Casino).

Tickets are on sale and can be purchased at the Pechanga box office, by calling (877) 711-2946 or online at Proceeds from the event benefit Habitat for Humanity Inland Valley.

Sashimi served at the first Pechanga Sushi & Sake Festival in 2019Four ticket levels are available:

  • VIP – $150 and includes sampling over 40 varieties of sake, eight types of beer, and talks with sake makers, chefs, and bidding on silent auction items in front of general admission attendees .
  • VIP Designated Driver – $70 and allows guests to sample sushi and bid on silent auction items before general admission attendees.
  • General Admission – $75 and includes sampling over 40 varieties of sake and eight types of beer, sampling the freshest sushi prepared by Pechanga master chefs, and bidding on silent auction items.
  • Designated Driver – $45 and includes trying the freshest sushi prepared by Pechanga master chefs, plus bidding on silent auction items.

With just one ticket, customers can sample over 40 premium sakes (daiginjo, ginjo, junmai, and sparkling), including many award-winning brands and styles from Japan and around the world.

The chefs at Pechanga are wrapped up in the festival as they prepare thousands of pieces of fresh sushi to pair with sake selections. Chefs Kiyo Ikeda, Head Chef of Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar, Kok Che, Executive Sous Chef of Pechanga’s Asian Restaurants, and Andre Pinto, Executive Chef of Pechanga, will be on hand to meet guests, introduce them to fresh produce, sushi facts from the site and share their expert suggestions for pairing sushi and sake.

A traditional Japanese Taiko drummer, a Japanese guitarist and a “Koto” – Japanese harpist – will set the mood for the festival’s musical interludes. A silent auction also offers sought-after freebies such as artwork, vacation packages and more.

The idea for the festival grew out of the popularity of beer and sake in Southern California, as well as the continued rise of sushi as a mainstay of sought-after dishes in America.

Pechanga’s Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar’s 2nd place finish in the 2018 Best Casino Restaurant in the United States reader’s poll also helped cement the possibility of the festival at the Temecula Resort/Casino.

The festival tasting menu and sake selections will soon be unveiled.

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