The Grapes of Grandeur: Floridian Wine Festival Begins Late April

The Sandestin Wine Festival of Florida has announced the 2011 "wine winners" as well as plans for the 2011 Culinary Pavilion—oenophiles are sure to make merry.

Marking the 25th year of the festival, the wine will begin to flow this year from April 28-May 1 at The Village of Baytowne Wharf at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort.

Festival organizers and wine afficionados hailing from every corner of the country meet in advance to judge more than 600 wines, dividing the grape-laden libations into 70 categories by variety, style, and price—the top three wines in each category are awarded the gold, silver, and bronze awards.

Judges raised their glasses to this year's "2011 Best of Show":

Best Red - Bodegas Caro 2007 from the Southern Hemisphere.
Best White -  Rombauer 2009 Chardonnay from Napa Valley.

Grand Wine Tastings will be held at The Village of Baytowne Wharf on Saturday, April 30 from noon to 4 p.m. and Sunday, May 1 from 1 - 5 p.m.

This year's Culinary Pavilion is located on Sandestin's Grand Lawn, featuring the "Food Treasures of Spain" with delectable cheeses like Manchego with Quince paste, Murcia al Vino (also called Drunken Goat) as well as a slew specialty meats such as chorizo and the famed jamon serrano, all served with fresh baguettes plus the main fare of the day, an authentic Spanish paella.  

In the second tent, noshers and nibblers will discover fresh Spanish olives, esgarett (salt cod tapas served on crostini), Tortas de Aceite (sweet olive oil wafers), and Turron desserts (chocolate almond cakes).

Post feasting, festival goers can also check out the retail tent available each day to purchase (discounted) wine that just touched their palette.

To purchase tickets or find out more click here.

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