One of my favourite events at the Vancouver International Wine Festival has got to be their Festival Tasting. This is where you can experience all participating wineries’ offerings and ask questions and learn something new about wine (because it always seems to be something new to learn – at least for me anyway).
Throughout the immense space you’ll find some fun bite sized food stations including D’Oro Gelato, Terra Foods, Fiji Water and Nespresso. That being said, I’d definitely recommend eating something before heading into the tasting room.
The hall is organized by country and since California wines are featured this year, they take up the most space with several rows dedicated to the region. You’ll find over 53 wineries from California including the highly regarded Napa Valley.
Besides them, you’ll find many countries – and I encourage you to try at least one wine per country – it’s interesting how different climates and areas of the world can affect the taste of a specific wine.
You’ll also find the BC Liquor Store pop-up where you can purchase the wines you’ve tasted on the floor. You can ask them to hold it for you until you’re done in the tasting room or even get it shipped to your local BC Liquor Store for free.
Here are some of the highlights for me this year:
Robert Mondavi Winery – Their Fume Blanc was a hit for me at the preview event and resonated even more so on the Tasting Floor.
Meiomi Coastal California Wines – Although I’ve previously enjoyed their Rose (dry but sweet, if that makes sense), we tried their Chardonnay which has citrusy notes with nice acidity but a clean after taste.
Poplar Grove – This is one of (if not my favourite ) wineries in BC – their Pinot Gris is always my go to for whites but their Syrah is just as fantastic for a dinner time wine.
Henkell & Co. Gruppe – Sparkling wine is one of my fave ways to enjoy wine and we discovered their Blanc de Blancs and this might be one of our go to sparklers from now on.
Yalumba – Nathalie expressed her love for this wine in the Rhone Around the World seminar (the Virgilius Viognier) but we just had to try some other bottles. We tried their Cab Sauvignon and Strapper Barossa – both great options for a great dinner wine.
Hope Family Wines – their Treana Blanc was a highlight for us as well – fruity on the palate and slightly sweet and spicy in smell. Definitely one of our favourite Californian offerings!
For more information on the Vancouver International Wine Festival, check out their website here: https://vanwinefest.ca/