I'm an experienced corporate communicator and editor with an eye for interesting events and an attachment to my trusty Oxford dictionary.
Wine. You can think of it in 2 ways. Scientifically it's just a beverage made from the fermented juice of grapes, containing between 10% and 15% alcohol by volume. Holistically, as writer Robert Louis Stevenson favoured, it's "bottled poetry". I much prefer Stevenson's definition and those who agree, or are at least willing to be convinced, will be out in force at Sydney Cellar Door in Hyde Park on Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 February 2012, as part of the NSW Wine Festival.
This is Sydney's biggest outdoor wine festival held in Sydney's most popular outdoor festival venue. What's not to love about Hyde Park? I admit I'm just a tad biased because my husband proposed to me there, but most Sydneysiders appreciate it as a lawned and leafy haven from the hustle and bustle of Sydney's strident streets. Add good wine from more than ninety NSW wineries, cool music, vibrant food stalls from leading restaurants and the last burst of summer to that relaxed vibe and the result is sure to be fun.
[ADVERT] Event Details When: 11am to 6pm Saturday 25 February and Sunday 26 February 2012 Venue: Hyde Park Entry: Free Wine Tasting: $20 Tasting Package - 5 tasting tokens; $25 Tasting Package - 5 tasting tokens and one Festival wine glass; $30 Tasting Package - 5 tasting tokens and two Festival wine glases. Tasting Packages can be purchased here.
The festival will provide the opportunity to meet winemakers and perhaps learn to tell the difference between a Sangiovese and a Cabernet Sauvignon, or a Moscato and a Merlot. Exhibiting winemakers include old favourites like De Bortoli, Tyrrell's, Brokenwood, and 2011 International Winemaker of the Year, McGuigan Wines, but also include some of the newer kids on the block, wines from emerging regions and boutique producers. You can sample the delights of Cumulus Estate Wines from Orange, Yarrh Wines from Murrumbateman just outside Canberra, or the Hunter Valley's Mistletoe Wines. If you're into colourful and interesting names you might prefer Moppity Vineyards from the rapidly growing Hilltop wine region near Young, or Wurrumbungle Wines BLOWFLY range, or Two Italian Boys, with a witty motto, "pick us up tonight" and a fun website.
Food A variety of food stalls will be selling cuisine to match your tasting experiences. Some of Sydney's most popular restaurants will be represented including Almond Bar, Zushi and Bodega. There will also be stallholders representing NSW's 14 different wine regions showcasing their local produce.
While the program of performers has yet to be released, the website promises reggae, jazz, blues and funk over the course of the weekend so that you can chill along with the wine.
Another great wine lover, US statesman Benjamin Franklin, described wine as something that "makes daily living easier, less hurried, with fewer tensions and more tolerance." I'll drink to that, and so should you at Sydney Cellar Door 2012.