Last night we attended the Cincinnati Int’l Wine Festival. It’s a pretty big event for Cincinnati, and regularly reaches maximum attendance. Every year the event is held at the Cincinnati Convention Center, although last year the center was under construction and they shoved the entire wine festival and attendees into a very tiny room. They improved upon that this year, opening the new section of the Convention Center to the Wine Festival. We noticed that it wasn’t quite as overheated and that there seemed to be more space for people in between the booths.
This year we attended with some friends of ours, Gabrielle and Jason. It was fun to attend with another couple, plus we were able to cover more booths by sharing tastes. At least Gabby & I shared tastes …
The guys loved the 3 Thieves booth. If you’re familiar with 3 Thieves, you’ll know they offer their wine in jugs. They offered us "I Love Jugs" stickers. See why it was a hit with the guys?
This year, with the increased space came increased variety. I’m usually quite intrigued by Ohio-area wineries, and I was happy to see that there seemed to be even more local wineries this year than in the past. Whereas I enjoy the smaller, local wineries, Kevin tried to focus on Zins this year. He happily tasted old favorites, but was zealous in trying new Zins as well.
In the early hours of the Festival, you can usually have some good conversations with the winery representatives. Admittedly, some of them are there because they were told to come. But so many of them are in the industry because they are passionate about wine. Again, I especially enjoy chatting with the folks from the local wineries.
We were disappointed to note that one of our favorite wineries, Gundlach-Bundschu, again did not have a booth at the festival. We are always disappointed in the lack of food per attendees at these things. It’s like they plan for everyone to have one square of cheese and that is it.
By the end of the evening, on Saturday night, the wineries are running completely out of wine. People are everywhere and I get to a point where I just need to leave. I was actually disappointed in myself this year. I need to find a better way to organize myself, take notes, collect materials, and have a drink of wine, all with only two hands.
All that said, the value at the wine festival is pretty darn good. You get to taste countless wines, and talk to people about them, for $65. It’s a great event and I look forward to 2007.
Wine Blogging Wednesday #20 has been announced for Wednesday, April 12. The beverage of choice: Any white that is not one of the big 3 (sauv blanc, chardonnay, reisling) or a blend. For us, the choice is easy. We’ve got several bottles of Pinot Gris sitting around, as well as a nice Cline Viognier we picked up last summer at the winery. I don’t even have to hit a wine store for this – I can just shop at home. The point of this exercise, obviously, is to expand your horizons beyond the standard big 3 whites.
On another note, the Cincinnati Int’l Wine Festival Grand Tasting is this upcoming weekend. We’re joining our friends Gabrielle & Jason this year. If you have any interest and you’re in the area, the Wine Fest is a great time. Classy too.
UPDATE, 4/13/06: WBW#20 is gone now, but the review lives on here.
The Wine Blogging Wednesday Round-up has been posted over at WINExpressions.com. Over 30 different Rhone-style wines were tried. If you’re interested in trying one, here’s a great place to start.
So here we are – Wine Blogging Wednesday. I’m still a little nervous, this being my first time all. We stuck with France because we tend to drink heavily Aussie and California/Washington wines. France is still new to us.
Producer: Domaine La Remejeanne
Varietal: Grenache Blend
Designation: Les Arbousiers
Region: Rhone/Southern Rhone
Appellation: Cotes du Rhone
If you want to know how it tastes, you really need to click the link to read more.
There’s a thing out there on the web called Wine Blogging Wednesday. This is the 19th monthly blogging session, but my first. I’m a little nervous.
This month’s theme (hosted over at WINExpression.com) is When in Rhone:
This month’s Wine Blogging Wednesday theme “When in Rhone” aims to help
us become acquainted with these varietals that are being used all over
the world. Winemakers have decided to ‘do as the Rhonins do’ and
transport and clone the varietals in rich soils from Australia and New
Zealand to the warm central coast of California, and the vines are
adapting quite nicely. Consumers are becoming aware of the high caliber
wines crafted from these distinct grapes in areas other than the Rhone.
Events like the Rhone Rangers, and Hospice du Rhone
are continuing to gain recognition and popularity as they showcase the
latest efforts by the winemakers focusing on these varietals.
So tomorrow I"ll be writing about a wine from the Cotes du Rhone appellation. Kevin and I are drinking it tonite.
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