Oregon Spring Beer & Wine Festival

I’m going to take a little break from writing recipes to tell you about a fabulous, local festival that I went to last weekend at the Oregon Convention Center. A group of us went to the 16th annual Oregon Spring Beer and Wine Festival to help my friend celebrate her brother-in-laws big 3-0. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate your birthday than sampling local beer and wines all afternoon!

When we arrived at the convention center the line seemed extend for an eternity (a good indication that this is a wildly popular event). To our surprise the line moved quickly and we arrived at the ticket booth a mere thirty minutes later. A “package for one” cost $20.00 which includes admission and fifteen tokens. The tokens could be used for beer, wine, and even food samples.

Once inside the festival, there was a convenient coat check stand set up that took donations for payment. Before we knew it the boys had immediately split to the beer garden so the girls headed straight for the vino. Each sample at the festival generally cost one token but the size of the sample varied by vendor.

Our first stop was a fun, Hawaiian-themed booth called Hip Chicks Do Wine. We all had a generous sample of their award-winning Cabernet Franc, a delicious blend of bell pepper, raspberry, and plum. We spent the entire rest of the afternoon sampling wines and cheeses and discovered another red favorite along the way: the Grenache from Crater Lake Cellars.

Our last stop, Naked Winery, was one of the best. We loved this stop because we got the widest variety of samples – twelve samples for five tokens! Not only was the wine good and plentiful but the hostesses were fun! One of our favorites was the Cabernet Sauvignon, named Penetration….as they say at Naked Winery “Penetration is always satisfying.”

On our way to the stage to listen to some live music we stumbled upon a big silver bus filled with people and red cushioned seats…we just couldn’t resist. Inside we found a bartender serving spirits from Bendistillery based in – you guessed it – Bend, Oregon. We had a hot shot of their pepper infused vodka followed by an amazing hazelnut espresso vodka called Cofia….so delicious!

I would definitely recommend checking out this event next year but if you can’t wait to try these amazing drinks, check out the vendor’s websites! Naked Winery offers some great little gift packages that would be perfect for Mother’s Day or a girlfriends birthday! The 17th annual Spring Beer and Wine Festival is scheduled for April 22-23, 2011. Hope to see you there!

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Posted by: Denise Angvick on Denise’s Dish

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