If you enjoy attending Northwest wine festivals as much as I do, I've got a couple of recommendations for upcoming events that are certain to whet your appetite.
For an excellent food-and-wine festival with a local flair, be sure to consider Bellingham Bay Rotary Club's Grape & Gourmet on Nov. 4. It's one of the key fundraisers for the club, and a portion of the proceeds benefit local charitable organizations.
Held at Bellingham's Best Western Lakeway Inn from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., the culinary delight will feature wines from over 30 regional wineries and gourmet foods from local restaurants.
I suggest buying a VIP ticket, which gets you in the door early at 5 p.m. That provides a better opportunity to make sure you don't miss out on anything, and, besides, who doesn't enjoy VIP status?
According to the club's website, advance tickets can be purchased by calling Mike Werner at 815-4269 or going to bellinghambayrotary.com. Regular tickets are $75; VIP tickets are $125.
The Taste of Tulalip at Tulalip Resort Casino, near Marysville, is scheduled for Nov. 9 and 10. Last year I suggested that you mark your calendar and buy your tickets in advance because the increasingly popular, top-of-the-line food-and-wine event would likely sell out.
That's indeed the case with the multicourse Celebration Dinner slated for Friday, Nov. 9, and the following day's all-access pass. But there are still plenty of tickets available for the Nov. 10 Grand Taste, which I consider the highlight of the weekend.
I love this event because it includes some of Washington's premiere wineries, such as Abeja and Leonetti Cellars, which you're unlikely to find at any other public tasting. In addition to the 65 Washington wineries scheduled to be on hand, there also will be a number of fine wines from Napa Valley, Oregon, Italy and France.
For those who like to bend the elbow for an occasional pint of ale, a selection of craft beers from 14 regional breweries will be on tap.
The five-hour Grand Taste begins at 2:30 p.m. and includes unlimited tasting along with a wide selection of cuisine prepared by the resort's staff. Tickets are $85 in advance, $95 the day of the event, but don't expect them to last that long. For ticket information, see tasteoftulalip.com.
DAN RADIL is a wine enthusiast who lives in Bellingham. Reach him at danthewineguy.com.