Magic Hosts First Orlando Wine Festival; Lots of Events Coming Up This Week

This weekend was a big one for Orlando’s wine scene, with the inaugural Orlando Wine Festival on Saturday at the Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes. The Orlando Magic organized the event and invited me to attend the al fresco grand tasting.

It featured mostly Napa wines, and while those big reds were a little challenging to drink outside on a warm day, it was worth it to taste some of the classic wines on hand – Dunn and Heitz were among the biggest names. I also enjoyed making a few new discoveries, including one of Argentina’s first GSM Rhone-style blends from Corazon del Sol, a project of Napa’s Revana Family Vineyard. All the winery representatives were lovely and informative too.

My only regret is that the festival’s high price tag (the cheapest package was $2500 per couple) kept many members of Orlando’s robust and active community of wine lovers away. Of course, the Magic sees the event primarily as a fundraiser for its Youth Foundation, but it would be nice if the team could find a way to make it more accessible to Orlando oenophiles who regularly support local wine establishments.

There are plenty of wine events coming up this week with significantly lower barriers to entry, though. Read on for the highlights.

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British Bubbles, a Whole Lotta Napa, and a Feast on a Farm

There’s a lot for Orlando wine lovers to get excited about in the coming week. We have a few more winery visitors in town, including Lisa Broman of Napa’s Broman Cellars – she’s doing three events in as many days at Luisa’s Cellar, Regency Wine & Liquor, and Tim’s Lake Mary-Sanford, respectively. Plus, an event this weekend offers the opportunity to sample food from Disney restaurants paired with wines chosen by a Master Sommelier … on a farm!

Read on for more highlights.

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Step Outside the Champagne Box: Six Unexpected Bottles of Bubbles for NYE!

Looking for something a little different to ring in the new year? Check out this post from 2016 for some Champagne alternatives that will put a sparkle in your celebration!

Orlando Wine Blog

Not much beats Champagne on New Year’s Eve, but if you’re looking for some out-of-the-box (and easier-on-the wallet) alternatives for the big night, you’re in luck! Champagne doesn’t have a lock on quality sparkling wine anymore. All six of these bottles should delight your palate, satisfy your enological curiosity, and enhance your celebratory mood as you welcome 2017. And only one of them is even from France!

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Iberia, Napa, and Charity Wine

There’s plenty of Central Florida wine-ing to be done this weekend. In case you missed the highlights in last week’s post, all the info is still on the Events Page!

Now it’s time to plan for next week, from a trip to the Iberian peninsula, to two Napa wine dinners, to wines for gift giving – no worries about wrong sizes there!

Here are a few highlights:

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Burgundy, Bubbles, and Brainy Wine

Happy Black Friday!

Whether you’re shopping, watching sports, or sleeping off yesterday’s turkey, I hope you’re having a wonderful, wine-filled weekend of gratitude.

After a slight lull in Orlando’s holiday wine calendar, things take off again next week. There’s a Burgundy tasting, a dinner featuring Spain’s Toro region, and an extraordinarily geeky tannin class, to name just a few. Here are some highlights!

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