11 sips not to miss at the GR Wine, Beer & Food Festival this weekend

West Michigan
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This year’s 11th Annual Grand Rapids International Wine, Beer & Food Festival returns to DeVos Place Thursday, November 15 through Saturday, November 17 and is sure to continue the tradition of providing a world-class experience in the heart of West Michigan.  We’ve pulled together a list of 11 sips you won’t want to miss this weekend!

11 sips not to miss at GR Wine, Beer & Food Festival

1. 2015 Opus 1 from Napa, California. Pricing out around $350 a bottle, you can sample this exclusive wine in The Elite Collection for just 42 tickets.

2. 19 Crimes. This unique socially-interactive wine blend brings sampling to life, with the “Living Wine Labels” app. Between 1788 and 1868, 165,000 convicts were sent via boat to Australia and this wine brand shares the stories of some of the most noted criminals Come face-to-face with infamous convicts to hear their side of the story as well as sampling their Red Blends (The Uprising and The Warden), Pinot Noir (The Punishment) and Hard Chardonnay at table 102.

3. Banfi Cellars 2014 Brunello di Montalcino from Italy. Crafted from 100% Sangiovese, from a combination of estate selected clones, about 90% of the wine is aged for 2 years in French oak barriques and the remaining 10% in Slavonian oak casks. Before release, the wine is bottle-aged for an additional 12 months. Try this at table 201

4. Orin Swift Mercury Head. One of the hottest luxury wineries of today is Orin Swift by famed wine maker David Phinney. The Mercury Head Cab is the flagship of his wines and is a rich and aromatic cabernet. A quintessential must try Napa Cabernet at the Elite Collection of wines table. Be sure to check out the bottle, as it has a real Mercury Head Dime on it.

5. Dark Horse Cans Rosé and Pinot Grigio. Wine in a can? Finally, you can enjoy wine anywhere and anytime.  This is the trend that everyone is talking about.  Come try it for yourself at table 117 and find out why all your local retailers are quickly expanding their can wine sections.

6. Moët Ice Impérial. The first and only champagne especially created to be enjoyed over ice. A new champagne experience combining fun, fresh and free sensations while remaining true to the Moët & Chandon style, a style distinguished by its bright fruitiness, its seductive palate and its elegant maturity. Sample this at The Elite Collection.

7. Fleur De Mer Rose. Rose’s are all of the rage right now. For best of show, you will find Fleur De Mer, Cotes De Provence. A brilliant coral pink color, Fleur de Mer evokes aromas and flavors of fresh watermelon, cherry, subtle citrus, lavender and Mediterranean herbs. Sample it at table 127.

8. Blaufrankisch (aka Lemberger and Kékfrankos) is a black-skinned wine grape grown widely in Austria and Hungary, and to a lesser extent in neighboring Germany, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria and Croatia. It is also now being grown in northern Michigan, with offerings this year from Left Foot Charley (table 197) and Shady Lane Cellars (table 191).

9. Moet Dom Perignon. Nothing more classic than Moet’s Dom Perignon, since 1668, this is the creme de la creme. This is the luxury of luxury and what the rich and famous pour at their celebrations. Found in The Elite Collection.

10. Temperance Silk Wine. These delicate blends of luscious real cream, wine and flavors create a smooth and easy to drink beverage. Sample flavors like Spice Nog, Mint, Cherry and Chocolate at table 328.

11. Blanc de Bleu® is a premium California sparkling wine with an added hint of blueberries. Delicate, dry and crisp, it is the perfect accompaniment for all of your memorable moments. Vividly pasteled, Blanc de Bleu offers seductive flavors and fresh aromatic effervescence showcased in a bottle that dazzles the imagination. Sample it at table 44.


Advanced tickets for the Festival may be purchased online for $15 per person and are valid for a one-time use Thursday, Friday or Saturday. A 3-Day Pass (available online in advance for $40) allows admission each day of the Festival and is intended for those who want to get the most out of their tasting experience. Online sales of the 3-Day Pass ends once the Festival opens on Thursday, November 15. Purchase tickets online here: Online Ticket Sales (Ticketmaster fees apply).

Once the festival opens, tickets may be purchased onsite at the Box Office: $15 for Thursday or $20 for either Friday or Saturday entrance. The 3-Day pass is also available for $40 but must be purchased at the Box Office by 9pm on Thursday, November 15.

Once inside, Festivalgoers purchase tasting tickets for 50-cents each which are used for all food and beverage tastings (excluding Pairings), with each sample requiring a varied amount of sampling tickets. Admission to this Festival is for those 21 or older, and valid ID is required to purchase tickets and to enter.

The 11th Annual Grand Rapids International Wine, Beer & Food Festival in 2018 will open on Thursday, November 15 and run through Saturday, November 17. Hours are 6-9pm on Thursday, 4-10pm on Friday and 2-10pm on Saturday.

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