; Fun! Fun! Vancouver!: My Vancouver International Wine Festival Experience

Saturday, 2 March 2013

My Vancouver International Wine Festival Experience

I had never gone to the Vancouver International Wine Festival before, and this was my first year attending and volunteering. As a volunteer, you get to go for free on one of the tasting nights. It just so happened that they gave me my tasting night first, followed by two volunteeer shifts on the Friday and Saturday.

So on Thursday night I found myself lining up with the well-dressed crowd ready to enter the big ballroom at the Vancouver Convention Centre. There was a buzz of excitement in the air as the doors opened wide, and as we stepped in, we were each handed a gleaming wine glass ready to be filled all evening long.

At first I was a bit nervous as I am not a huge wine connoisseur, but rather more of your everyday wino! So seeing people swishing the wines around in their mouths, taking large inhalations to ready their palettes, was overwhelming and intimidating. It would've been more fun if I had someone I knew there with me to go explore things together with but hey, I'm not going to complain about getting to attend an event that would normally cost $165 a head!

To help break the ice was a little game they had going on, which included a passport of sorts that had 8 wines on it. The goal was to go and find each of the 8 wines, try them, and get your "passport" stamped. Then when complete, you head on over to the Vancouver Sun newspaper booth and give them your passport and in exchange, they gave you a box of Purdy's chocolates! Not bad at all!

Oh and did I mention the food?? There's food!! There's artisan cheeses, Terra Breads, crackers, jams, and all sorts of goodies to help you form that much needed base if you decide to actually drink all the wine you sample rather than pour it into the "spit bucket." 

It was a wonderful evening, and I found myself running up and down the aisles sampling an assortment of wines from all over the world. This year's featured area was California, so there's a huge section on Cali if you go.

My volunteer shift had me emptying out the said "spit buckets" and refilling water. It's not a bad gig at all, and you get to meet all sorts of people - both volunteers and patrons.

The Vancouver International Wine Festival is here for one more night before it wraps up until next year!! Check it out tonight if you're looking for something to do!

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