Bacchanalia Online Auction Announced


Vancouver BC: The Vancouver International Wine Festival (VIWF/VanWineFest) and Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival are partnering to present a unique new online event, the Bacchanalia Online Auction, presented by National Bank Private Banking 1859, which will offer exclusive wines and wine experiences while raising crucial funds for both festivals. Between April 27 and May 1, 2021, the virtual Auction will offer an opportunity to bid on an array of wines and wine experiences that will appeal to those who love wine, collect and invest in it, and look for unique winery stays and tours.

The Auction will host over 120 lots, including a rare Nebuchadnezzar (15-litre) bottle of Champagne Taittinger Brut Reserve (valued at $3,000); a highly sought-after bottle of 1994 Pétrus (valued at $4,000); and private wine-tasting sessions at Vanessa Vineyards & Nk’Mip Cellars (with a 2-night stay at Spirit Ridge Resort) and the Mission Hill Family Estate Winery, all in the Okanagan. As well, there will be exclusive Bard-themed packages focused on the Festival’s extensive costume collection and an opportunity to spend dedicated time with Artistic Director Christopher Gaze.

VanWineFest is well known for its long-running Bacchanalia Gala Dinner + Auction, an annual in-person Vancouver event that is synonymous with sensational wine and food, including one of the most exclusive wine auctions in North America. The Gala – along with the rest of VIWF 2021 – could not go ahead this year due to the pandemic. Instead, the prestigious Auction has been reinvented to become a virtual experience that still celebrates and provides access to outstanding wines and wine experiences.

“The Bacchanalia Gala Dinner + Auction has earned a reputation for offering an unparalleled opportunity for wine collectors and serious wine aficionados to stock up their cellars with unique and rare wines,” says VIWF Executive Director Harry Hertscheg. “Bacchanalia Online aims to keep that valuable experience alive. And it will serve as a vital cornerstone in our efforts to ensure a robust return for both our Festivals.”

“The in-person Gala and Auction has been a key fundraiser for Bard on the Beach in recent years,” notes Bard’s Artistic Director Christopher Gaze. “We are honoured that Bard is the official charitable beneficiary of the Wine Festival and we are incredibly grateful that their team is working with us to sustain their annual financial support, even though their full festival and Gala event couldn’t go ahead this year.”

The Auction’s Presenting Sponsor is the National Bank Private Banking 1859, one of Canada’s leaders in wealth management providing highly personalized service and sophisticated solutions for clients in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec. The bank is proud to partner on this new event, which aligns with their mission to provide expertise in wealth management, including philanthropic causes, in Western Canada.

The Auction’s virtual Platform Partner is Iron Gate Auctions, a Canadian-based company that provides online access to rare vintages for local to international wine collectors and a point of entry for new, energized buyers; it also partners with select organizations to facilitate their own branded online auctions. The Bacchanalia Online Auction catalogue and bidding interface will be hosted on Iron Gate’s website; see access details below.

Another key partner isthe event’s Venue Sponsor,The Vancouver Club; its downtown Vancouver facility will be where successful bidders pick up their wine purchases. The Club is hosting a related online event on April 29; Uncorked! will offer a lively, accessible tasting experience with select wines and foodstuffs pre-delivered to ticket-buyers’ homes, and wine experts animating the online gathering. A portion of the proceeds from this special Uncorked! event will benefit Bard on the Beach.

The Auction is also generously supported by two Daily Sponsors: ContainerWorld and Hunter Litigation Chambers (HLC). ContainerWorld is one of the world’s leading freight forwarding companies, offering seamless logistics support to the alcoholic beverage and hospitality industries. Hunter Litigation Chambers is widely recognized as one of the premier dispute resolution firms in British Columbia. HLC partner Randy Kaardal QC is a past VIWF Board Chair and a keen wine collector.

The Bacchanalia Online Auction’s virtual catalogue will go live on Sunday, April 25 on; bidding access opens Tuesday, April 27. Full advance details on the event are available at and

Social handles: @BardOnTheBeach #BardOnTheBeach #Bard2021 @VanWineFest #VIWF

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