If Lord Dionysus, the Greek god of wine and winemaking, were going to make an appearance in Telluride, he surely would at the yearly Wine Festival. For thirty-something years, Telluride has been honoring the grape with a variety of events in late June in a true celebration. It’s an important event in Telluride- one that sells out quickly, and for good reason. Wine lovers spend a few days in the luxury of the San Juan Mountains in the gorgeous summer weather, immersing themselves in fine food and incredible wines. How fitting. Some say it truly is a divine experience.
It’s a weekend of tasting, brunches, cooking, and other cocktails. Wine experts from around the world, sommeliers, and winemakers from renowned vineyards enter the Telluride canyon to take part in the celebration. Creating an elegant synergy, local and visiting chefs also gather for pairings of incredible foods for the featured wines. It’s a celebration of the senses, and a way for one to deepen one’s interest and knowledge-base in what is wine culture. And truly there is no better way to learn than to jump right in and go with the “flow.”
So come ready to learn something. Presenters have much to share in the industry, and most are authors, educators, researchers, and wine makers. Telluride Wine Festival is about the discussion as well as the experience of wine.
The exhibitors who participate bring in the goods that make Telluride Wine Festival truly superb. Connoisseurs will have opportunities to sample wines from vineyards like Barlow, Camelot, Chamisal, Mondavi, Deadbolt, Gratien, Magician, Landmark, Justin, Palm Bay, Rodney Strong, and many, many others.
An event schedule does exist, and wine lovers can take part in the celebratory toasts that occur, as well as the grand tasting, and the various cooking events showcased by the chefs in appearance that year.
Like many Telluride festivals, this one also loves volunteers. Applications are online and those accepted have the opportunity to serve the festival by working events or the box office in exchange for admittance to the other events.
Every Wine Festival is a little different, but the thread and theme that hold it together are constant. The same traditions and atmosphere of elegance and beauty persist.
Lodging should be reserved in advance, with options in the town of Telluride available with notice. Suggestions include the New Sheridan Hotel, Hotel Telluride, and Hotel Columbia. Other hotels in Mountain Village are also of quality, but do require gondola transportation. Craigslist and local lodging companies do feature high-end short-term rentals as well.
Bring comfortable shoes. Telluride is a town to be walked. Though style is always present, high heels are usually not. Rain jackets are suggested, as well as an evening layer.
To learn more about Telluride Wine Festival, and this tradition that is so dear to many, see http://telluridewinefestival.com/. The photo gallery online beautifully gives a feel for the fun and festivity of Telluride Wine Festival. Also available for purchase are the annual posters commemorating the festival.