The Wine World Came Back

We were so thrilled to welcome the wine world back to Vancouver this spring. With all the uncertainty in the world, it felt like a small victory to be able to gather together in person to celebrate and share our love of wine. Other than a few supply chain hiccups, we successfully made it through 27 events over seven days, including four sold-out International Festival Tastings. While the room had a lower capacity, the zest for sampling and discovering new wines was in full display.

The Bacchanalia Gala Dinner + Auction, presented by National Bank Private Banking 1859, also returned to an in-person evening of spectacular wine and food, raising $120,000 for our charitable partner Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival!

Mark Your Calendar for 2023!

The 44th annual Vancouver International Wine Festival will take place April 24-30 at the Vancouver Convention Centre East. We’re back in our old digs next year, partying like it’s 2009! But don’t worry – some of our special events will still have that spectacular view across the harbour.

Celebrating Together

The 18th Annual Awards Lunch was a little different this year as the community celebrated our collective resilience and mourned those no longer with us. It was an emotional afternoon, but shared remembrance is an important part of coming together as a community. And there was much to celebrate for the future: we honoured our Sommelier of the Year, Jayton Paul, the wine director at Published on Main; the inaugural winner of the Terry Threlfall Scholarship, Kelcie Jones, wine educator and general manager at Elephant on Powell; and up-and-coming members of the hospitality industry.

The BC Hospitality Foundation Wine Business Professional Scholarships were also presented at the Awards Lunch by BCHF Executive Director Alana Dickson. These scholarships offer an opportunity for hospitality workers to increase their wine knowledge through further education. Recipients were: Andreane Ansay (Pluvio); Reverie Beall (AnnaLena); Tara Faucher (AnnaLena); Noel Hollett (The Vancouver Club); Sean McLaughlin (L’Abattoir); Trina Moran (Glowbal); Maia Pearson (Published on Main); Mary Catherine Ve?ko (Mike Wiegele Helicopter Skiing); Lisa-Maria Weizert (JoieFarm Winery); Jordan Westre (Burdock & Co / Bar Gobo).

Keep on Tasting

VanWineFest may be over, but you can still enjoy your favourite festival wines, especially if you took advantage of the free delivery service from the onsite BC Liquor store to your local BC Liquor store. But if you missed out shopping at Festival, many wines will be available at select BC Liquor Signature Stores in the coming weeks. Look for a blue dot to identify exclusive festival wines. Some bottles are even signed by a winemaker or owner.

Need a guide to your festival faves? View or download the Tasting Room program, which lists all the wines in the room. Or get the festival app from Google Play or the App Store. Many of these wines are available at BC Liquor Stores and private wine shops year-round. Use the email addresses included in the program, event booklets, and app to discover the availability of your favourite wines.

Buying festival wines is the best way to show your support and appreciation to the 100 wineries that shared their wines with you at VanWineFest 2022.

Wine Wednesdays at Bard

Our charitable beneficiary, Bard on the Beach, returns to live performances for the first time since 2019, with their mainstage production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream previewing Saturday, June 11, and running through the summer until September 24. The studio stage returns with productions of Harlem Duet by Djanet Sears, June 15-July 17, and Romeo and Juliet, August 3-September 24.

The Bard experience is always an amazing one, but you can upgrade your evening on select performances with a Wine Wednesday ticket: July 6 (already sold out!), August 3 & 17 at 6 p.m. Relax and enjoy the view from the Marquee tent while you sip and savour BC wines, presented by industry experts and special guests. Ticket price ($50) includes tasting a selection of premium wines and a curated box of savoury bites from Emelle’s. Requires same-day play ticket.

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