Portland Wine Week (website, facebook, instagram, twitter) kicks off today and the organizers and Portland restaurants have put together a really great schedule of events. It would be nearly impossible to go to every one of the 50+ wine dinners, signature events, tasting and seminars but you could have a lot of fun giving it a try.
I’ve looked over the full schedule and here are some of the highlights:
- Opening Night Events – the Grand Wine Tasting at the Custom House, and Grand Cru Lounge at the Cumberland Club
- Blind Tasting Seminar – taught by Master Sommelier Chris Tanghe
- Tasting Contest at MJs – test your skill at blind tasting and identifying
- Wine Passport – 25+ restaurant around town will have wine specials on the menu, get your passport stamped at least 10 to enter a drawing for a special dinner at the 2019 PWW
- Tasting Seminar with Michael Madrigale – Food & Wine Sommelier of the Year, Michael Madrigale, will be leading a tasting on Expensive Wines and Their Designer Imposters
- Women in Wine Panel – explores the growing leadership of women in the wine industry
- Natural Wine Panel Discussion – moderated by Joe Appel, and including panelists Ned Swain, Alice Feiring and others
- Wine Dinners – there are 12 different wine dinners taking place during PWW
- Wild Beer/Wild Wine – “Set to a sound track of David Bowie, Tim from Oxbow and Ned Swain from Devenish will serve a flight of beers and wines, all fermented with wild yeasts, and discuss how much overlap there actually is between these fizzy, ambient, yeast-wild beverages.”
- A Billecart-Salmon champagne brunch at Lolita
- A grower champagne and caviar event at Central Provisions
- Wine List Talk/Tasting/Exhibit –Maine-based rare book dealer and culinary historian by Don Lingren from Rabelais Books has put together an exhibit of wine lists from the past two centuries. He will be giving a talk on ‘what historical wine lists tell us about how wine marketing and wine drinking has changed over the decades”. Drifters will be pairing the talk with some wines “updated versions of historical wine list favorites”.
- Closing Gala – a 5-course dinner with pairings prepared by some of Maine’s top chefs: Bowman Brown from Elda, Ilma Lopez from Chaval/Piccolo, Emil Rivera from Sur Lie, Courtney Loreg from Woodford F&B, Fred Eliot from Scales. Accompanied by “High-flying ‘cirque’ aerial performances”.