Sunday, August 11, 2013

Columbus Wine Festival 2013

The Columbus Wine Festival is an event presented at Franklin Park Conservatory by the Giant Eagle supermarket chain.  It was held on Friday, August 11, and Saturday, August 12, 2013. 

The event features about 300 different wines  and probably 40 different beers.  The admission price gets you 10 wine sample tickets and 10 beer sample tickets (though in practice wine samplers would take beer tickets and vice versa).

A band played live music throughout the event, and a few food trucks and vendors supplied food and soft drinks.  Later in the event, Giant Eagle handed out free bottles of water for attendees.

Although I am not a frequent wine drinker, I found several wines there that I enjoyed and will have again.  Most of the wines (if not all of them) can be purchased at Giant Eagle.  In fact, Giant Eagle provides attendees with an order for that allows them to order the wines they like at the festival and pick them up later.  This might be something for the beer festivals to consider.

My wine taste is far less sophisticated and less well developed than my taste for beer.  Still, I did enjoy the following wines that I sampled at the event:
  • Joseph Carr 2011 Chardonnay
  • Mia Dolcea 2011 Moscato d’Asti
  • Mia Dolcea 2012 Terre Siciliane Pink Moscato
  • Barefoot Riesling
  • Barefoot Refresh Summer Red
  • Madria Sangria Moscato
  • Fizz 56 Sparkling Red Wine
  • Camelot Cellars Green Apple Riesling
Widmer Brothers Kill Devil Brown Ale
The beer selection wasn’t the focus of the event, and there honestly weren’t many that I enjoyed.  However, the following beers did get my attention and I’ll look forward to trying them again and doing a proper review:
  • Samuel Adams Pumpkin
  • Samuel Adams Oktoberfest
  • Rivertown Pumpkin
  • St. Stefanus Blonde
  • Widmer Brothers Kill Devil Brown Ale
  • Goose Island Pere Jacques
We were there Saturday afternoon.  It was hot and sunny for most of the day, but there were a few places you could go to cool off while enjoying a sample or a bite of food.

If you enjoy wine and beer (especially wine), you’ll find this a pleasant event.  There are enough different wines represented to ensure that you find at least a few you like (if not love), and although the beer selection is considerably smaller it’s not bad.

This would be a great event to attend with friends, as you would be able to sample a wide array of the available beverages, enjoy good food and music, and spend time in the beautiful Conservatory grounds.

Beer Sampling Area

One of the food trucks at the event

The Goose Island Beer Pavilion

The conservatory makes a nice place to have a beer/wine festival

Lots of people enjoying the wines available to sample

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