A Bounty of Harvest Season Festivals

    Happy Labor Day!

     Wait a minute… a long weekend, or just lounging in your favorite chair doing nothing?

     Excuse me, I’m being tapped on the shoulder by Vinesse founder Martin Stewart…

     (What’s that? It’s not good for the hit count to ridicule the Web site visitor? But I was just… Yes, sir. Sorry about that…)

     Okay, let’s start over again…

     Happy Labor Day! And thanks for stopping by the VinesseTODAY Web site. We appreciate you checking in with us, especially on a day when you could be doing a hundred other things.

     Speaking of things to do, just because it’s Labor Day doesn’t mean it’s the end of the festival season. In fact, September has a bunch of activities to help ease us through the transition from summer to fall.

     Here’s a sampling…

    *** GrapeFest. Not far from Dallas, in the appropriately named community of Grapevine, you can not only sample lots of already-in-the-bottle wines, but also stomp grapes that will be used to make vintage 2008 wines.

     September 11-14. grapevinetexasusa.com

     *** Telluride Blues & Brews Festival. Man does not live by wine alone. (Although we’d appreciate it if you’d keep that observation just between us.) This festival, staged in one of the most beautiful places on Earth, serves up lots of microbrews along with some pretty cool music — Etta James and Canned Heat, for example.

     September 12-14. tellurideblues.com

     *** Kentucky Bourbon Festival. I’m not a bourbon drinker. Never have been; never will be. Just don’t like the flavor or the impact. Besides, there are way too many fabulous wines constantly calling out my name, so who has time for any other adult beverage? All of that said, this is one of those festivals — held in Bardstown — at which you can have a ton of fun being the designated driver. Among the activities that do not involve lifting a glass to the lips: barrel making demonstrations, a flower festival, historical tours in horse-drawn trolleys, music events, a family fun area, a golf tournament, a horseshoe pitch, seminars, museum tours… and much, much more.

     September 16-21. kybourbonfestival.com

     *** Oktoberfest. Join 7 million of your best friends in Munich for the biggest party on the planet. And while beer is the focus, it’s no problem slipping into a neighborhood watering hole and finding a nice glass of Riesling or Gewurztraminer.

     September 20-October 5. http://oktoberfest.de/

     *** The Great British Cheese Festival. The Cardiff Castle in Wales will be the scene of a massive tasting of 460 sheep, cow, goat and buffalo cheeses… as well as artisan wine, beer and cider.

     September 27-28. http://thecheeseweb.com/

     Meanwhile, grape growers in the Northern Hemisphere are gearing up for the 2008 winegrape harvest. In fact, in some areas, the grapes already are being brought in.

     All this week on VinesseTODAY.com, we’ll bring you reports from various locales, covering various aspects of the harvest. I hope you’ll check back daily — yes, even after you’ve gone back to work.

Posted in Editor's Journal
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