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01.02.2009

Join Vinography at The Aspen Food & Wine Classic '09

aspen_classic.jpgNow that you're wrapping up your Winter holidays, it's the perfect time to plan your Summer ones. In my opinion Summer holidays should be filled with beautiful scenery, great wine, and delicious food. If you agree, then perhaps you'll consider joining me at the Aspen Food and Wine Classic 2009.

I grew up in Aspen, and as a kid, I worked as a catering scamp at the Classic, hauling crates of dishes around, not really knowing what the whole thing was about, other than there was lots of free food. Last year I had the double pleasure of not only returning to my home town for the first time in 14 years, but doing so as a speaker at the Classic.

I believe I was the first blogger to ever present at the Classic, and apparently I didn't screw it up, because they asked me back again this year. Truthfully, I had a blast last year, and so did the folks who attended my seminars. We tasted some great wine together, and I'm super excited to do it again this June.

Tickets have just gone on sale for the 2009 Aspen Food and Wine Classic, and as the event always sells out, now would be the time to start thinking about just how tasty you want your June to be.

I'll be returning to my home town again to presenting two more guided tastings. The first, entitled "Sonoma Superstars" will highlight some of my favorite wines from some of Sonoma County's top producers. The second, entitled "Cabernet: Next From Napa" will highlight fantastic Cabs from several new producers that are just releasing some of their first wines.

When I'm not introducing attendees to some of my favorite wines, I'll be standing in the back watching while the real pros do their thing: Robert Bohr on Champagne; David Lynch on Italy; Michael Bonadies on Washington State; Anthony Giglio on Riesling, etc.

I'll also be poking my head in to see if I can even just get a whiff of some of the amazing VIP reserve tastings, which include a Conterno Barolo tasting, a vertical tasting of Remoissenet Clos Vougeot starting from 1952, and a retrospective on 1989 Bordeaux, among others.

And, of course, in between all that wine, I'll be nibbling on some fantastic food from some of the top chefs in the country, including Bobby Flay, Mario Batali, Jacques & Claudine Pépin, Danny Meyer, and the folks from Bravo's Top Chef, including Tom Colicchio and Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard.

If that sounds like your idea of a good time, you should come join me! Check out the Food & Wine Classic web site where you can download the schedule of events and buy your tickets.

As usual, the event benefits charity -- this year supports the Wholesome Wave Foundation, a national initiative dedicated to supporting local farms and encouraging sustainable agriculture.

I hope to see you there!

Comments (3)

Dylan wrote:
01.03.09 at 11:47 AM

Congratulations! That's great that you were invited back on as a speaker. I just checked out the site and appreciate the simplicity of the layout. It looks like they'll have a lot of interesting names appearing in addition to your own. Regarding whether or not I can attend is an entirely different story.

Rene ala Carte wrote:
01.04.09 at 3:48 PM

Congratulations on being part of the Classic.

My wife and I volunteered for four years and I must say it was time very well spent. It was so good that it should be illegal!

Aspen is a wonderful place and the food and wine make it even better.

01.05.09 at 5:02 PM

Hey Alder!

I really love your blog and hope you don't mind that I stole your Matt Wilson photo for my own blog.That photo was too awesome to overlook. Don't worry I fully referenced Matt Wilson's web site and bio and gave Vinography props for the lead.

But something's been bugging for quite some time now and I wanted your thoughts... Are there any wine events in the US for real people or at least poor oenophiles, other than that Boston drunk fest that you were critical on? Granted this Aspen expo looks absolutely phenomenal and if I had $1085 to drop I would in a heart beat. But as I'm a graduate student in Paris (hometown Columbus, Ohio GO BUCKS!) going in massive debt, I'm quite short on cash.

As I'm sure you're fully aware, and I already know that supply and demand and culture plays a lot into it, but living in Paris gives me access to endless wine opportunities like tasting a 1995 Petrus and d'Yquem for free, just because I'm a normal joe living in Paris. And meeting the General Director of Lafite Rothschild, Xavier de Eizaguirre, and tasting all his Grand Cru selections of wine from Opus One to Mouton Rothschild for only 15 euros. And attending Le Grand Tasting on 22 November where i tasted nearly 100 wines and met Philippe Guigal at his prestige tasting where we drank four 96-98 point Guigal Cotes-Rotie's and Gaja's for 15 euros (the 2-day even cost 25 euros). And the Salon des Vins des Vignerons Indepedants on 30 November where I again tasted nearly 100 wines from the top independent wine makers of France.

Anyways, I'm not trying to get in a bragging match because you would tear me to pieces I know. I'm just wondering if you think the US will ever grow its wine appreciation to the point where ordinary people can taste a selection of Grand Crus at their local wine shop for under $10 or even free? Or will we be stuck for quite some time in the world of wine elitism where wine expos are very well organized and feature amazing wines and acclaimed wine celebrities but remain off limits to us ordinary joe's?

PS: Please correct anything that I may have grossly misstated at I wrote this response quite quickly and my US wine experience is limited only to my hometown of Ohio and a few wine trips throughout Napa and Mendocino, the Texas Hill Country, Washington State and British Columbia. But I've only read about wine expos in the States.

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