CLARKDALE - Members of the public are invited to attend the Verde Valley Wine Consortium's fifth annual wine festival and symposium on Saturday, May 28 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Yavapai College's Sedona Center (4215 Arts Village Drive in Sedona).
Hosted in conjunction with Yavapai College, the festival is entitled "The Fruits of our Labor." Tickets cost $30 each; students pay only $15.
Visit www.verdevalleywine.org to purchase tickets. Ticket includes a complementary wine glass and 8 wine tasting tickets.
The wine festival and symposium includes presentations, an all-Arizona wine tasting, a wine competition, and a raffle to support the VVWC. Participating in the grand wine tasting are Verde Valley wineries including, 48 Wine Works, Arizona Stronghold, Burning Tree Cellars, Caduceus Cellars, Chateau Tumbleweed, D.A.Ranch, Javelina Leap Winery, Page Springs Cellars, Pierce Bodega, Pillsbury Wine Company, Prescott Winery, Saeculum Cellars, Winery 101 and Yavapai College's Southwest Wine Center. Wine may be purchased at this event.
There will also be a "people's choice" award given to the most popular red and white wine.
Several food vendors will be on site for lunch, including Culinary Creations by Beth, Up The Creek Bistro & Wine Bar, Good Times Rolling Kitchen & Catering, Eureka Old Fashioned Soda, Wingfield Bread Co., Chef Wayne's Creations - Gourmet Hot Dog Cart, and Xocolatl Jason Wasser Confections.
"Each year the Wine Festival and Symposium builds upon the previous," Tom Schumacher, president of the VVWC, said. "Last year, our theme was 'Taking Root.' This year, we are celebrating 'The Fruits of our Labor' and have put together a fantastic wine festival with lots of information for the novice, wine connoisseur, winemaker and anyone who loves to sip wine, make wine or grow grapes."
The day starts off with a wine marketing discussion followed by a series of wine and vineyard discussions led by well-known local winery owners and enologists (Sam Pillsbury, Michael Pierce, Joe Bechard and Jeff Hendricks).
There will also be a presentation on "social media and wine" by the local AZ writer and Wine Monk, Cody Burket.
"The symposium creates an environment that encourages sharing information and the experiences of winegrowers and winemakers throughout the region," Yavapai College Enology Program Director, Michael Pierce said. "This sharing of knowledge not only lessens the learning curve for people new to concepts involved in winemaking, but also helps to continue the development of a strong wine industry in the Southwest."
The Grand Arizona Wine Tasting and raffle will begin at noon. The afternoon features two chocolate and wine pairing sessions with Jason Wasser of Xocolatl. This was a fan favorite at last year's festival.
Call 928-593-9694 for information about the wine festival and symposium.
To learn more about the Viticulture and Enology program at Yavapai College, visit www.viticulture.yc.edu.