Fifteen years ago, a group of passionate culinarians launched a new event celebrating all things food and beverage, with a side of music and holiday spirit. Today, the Grand Rapids International Wine, Beer & Food Festival (November 18 and 19 at DeVos Place) has grown into the largest and best in the Midwest and in 2019 was even touted as one of a dozen “Fall Wine Festivals in North America You Don’t Want to Miss” in 2019 – one of only two U.S. events listed not held on the West Coast – by Forbes.com.
New this year is a series of VIP Behind-the-Scenes Experiences, offered on Thursday afternoon and Saturday before the public opening, lead by industry experts like Tasters Guild International President Joe Borrello and Chef Paul Wahlberg of Wahlburgers (among others). Tickets for these elevated experiences will be on sale in early October.
Another unique and limited offering is the multi-course Pairing dinners, resembling a “Chef’s Table” at the restaurant. Here, you’ll be guided through the meal as it is prepared before your eyes and paired with wine, beer or cocktails (depending on the menu). Throughout DeVos Place, local restaurants serve up mouth-water small plates for an ultimate progressive dining experience for individuals and groups alike.
Things will be heating up once again on the Meijer Stage as the area’s top chefs and mixologists dish out ideas and recipes for their favorite seasonal, holiday and entertaining menus.
This festival provides countless immersive experiences where guests can learn about the unique nuances of wine, beer, cider, mead and spirits taught by industry experts. More than 250 craft beers, hard ciders and flavored malt-based beverages, including a handful of flavorful non-alcoholic options, will be available in “Beer City Station” and “Cider Row” while “The Vineyard” features aisle after aisle of wines of all styles and colors from across the globe as well as from right here in our own home state of Michigan. Treat your palate by sipping on exclusive wines like Dom Perignon or Opus 1 (for a fraction of the $300 per bottle price) as part of an Elite Collection experience.
Highlights of the festival once again include:
• The Vineyard – featuring 1,200+ wines of all styles and colors from around the world.
• Beer City Station – highlighting the many flavors and styles of the craft brewing world.
• Cider Row – focusing on the growing hard ciders made locally and beyond.
• RendezBREW – encompassing the cordials and coffees paired with desserts and other delicious nightcap offerings.
• Small Plates – bite-sized samples from area restaurants.
• Pairings – intimate settings for food and beverage pairings, for an added cost.
• Live Music – because you need something to please your ears as well as your palate!
• Meijer Food Stage - Learn the latest in culinary trends at these complimentary presentations from experts and personalities.
For more information and tickets, visit GRWineFestival.com.