Wednesday, February 17, 2010

2010 VA Wine Expo Comes to Richmond

VA Wine Expo 2-17-10

Brad Kutner

Download audio version here

The 2010 Virginia Wine expo is just around the corner, and Annette Boyd, marketing director for the Virginia Wine Board, wants you to discover Virginia Wines.

“To a lot of people out there, I think VA wines are an unknown, but to a lot of wine writers and restaurateurs, and to a lot of folks who are really experiences,” said Boyd, “they are hearing a lot of buzz about VA wines because we really are coming on very strong as the next up-and coming wine region.”

The expo opens Friday February 26th and runs until Sunday the 28th at the Greater Richmond Convention Center. It will feature over 60 vineyards from across the state making it the largest gathering of Virginia wines of the year. Boyd feels many people will get a rare chance by attending.

“This is a really unique opportunity to find some really fabulous wines that you might not be able to find at a restaurant or a wine shop just cause they are small wineries.” Said Boyd.

The goal of the event is to spread the word about Virginia wines, and support local industry. Many of the vintners are small, producing less than 3000 cases, and the expo gives a chance for the little guy to be exposed to both the consumer and the trade. Ann Heidig, president of the Virginia Wine Association explains the importance of the event.

“Well what we want to do is showcase the quality of VA wine to the capital city and the people there.” Said Boyd, “we believe we have come a long way and we have a product we can be very proud of. We see the expo as a way to showcase our products and show that the industry is vibrant and growing.

Wine is King at the expo, however it is also a chance for Virginia foodies to experience Richmond area cuisine. Restaurants like Emilio’s and Savor are participating in food pairing seminars.

As Hiedig puts it, it’s “sort of a local product to go with the great VA foods we have.”
Saturday night will feature a special Sparkle and Sweets event, which Hiedig is especially excited about.

“From 9 to midnight were going to have an event were u can leave the symphony and come over to the hall and taste some desserts that were made by some of the fine restaurants paired with VA sparkling and dessert wines.” Said Hiedig.

There will also be special tasting and educational events through out the weekend. Alex Papajon, executive director of the Wine Expo, explains some of the happenings.

“The highlight is going to be Bartholomew Broadbent, who is an internationally renown wine critic and importer. He’s going to conducting a seminar called ‘World Class Ports and Madeiras.’ He’s going to be tasting some world class ports and Madeiras as well as some VA ports or port style wines. We have a Cab Franc showdown that is between Cab Franc from here in VA and Cab Franc from France. We are also doing some wine paring seminars; we have a couple of them. One is wine and Spanish Tapas and one is wine and comfort food.” Said Papajon.

The Virginia Wine expo is to be an event that will be sure to leave it’s mark on Richmond and all those who attend, giving locals a chance to taste wine from across the state. For more information and tickets, check out

For Richmond Independent Radio News, I’m Brad Kutner.

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