Whistler’s high altitude food and wine party
turns 12 this year — in strange times. As the current economic downturn
goes global, I’m betting Cornucopia cannot arrive soon enough for some local
merchants desperate to kick off an early ski season with five days of food and
This year’s festival runs from Nov. 6 to 10
with new organization and plenty of “new” events organizers no doubt are
expecting will attract crowds. So how do you attract people to spend money on
food and wine when skiing is not an option? Go international and head for
France, the home of wine. With British Columbia wineries about to blow the
budget on their appearance as the theme region at the Vancouver Playhouse
International Wine Festival next spring, Cornucopia will work the French theme.
What follows is our annual guide to some of
the best wine events at Cornucopia. After 12 years I suspect people will
gravitate to some of the events that particularly interest them and/or fit
their current wine needs. As always, unless otherwise mentioned, all events
take place at the TELUS Whistler Conference Centre (TWCC). For complete details
on ticket availability and pricing for both events and accommodations simply
log onto whistlercornucopia.com. Don’t wait for the last minute to pick up
tickets — otherwise you may be disappointed.
The kick off House Party goes French this year
under the banner of
Apéritif a la Française (House Party).
The French are determined to make inroads in the
B.C. market at the consumer level and will use the Grand Foyer of the TWCC to
work the crowds. The plan is to serve a variety of classic French aperitif
wines to inspire you to think French the next time you are buying wine.
Entertainment and bites of food round out Cornucopia’s kick-off. Thursday, Nov.
6. $35. 5 to 7 p.m.
The signature CRUSH nights have been revamped
again this year to include dinner possibilities at a number of Whistler
restaurants. Both CRUSH nights can include a multi-course dinner ticket at one
of 16 Whistler restaurants ranging from $100 to $135, depending on which
restaurant menu you choose. The CRUSH Premiere Gala Grand Tasting runs Friday,
Nov. 7 at 8:15 p.m. (VISA Early entry) or from 9 to 11:15 p.m., and includes a
guaranteed high-end wine at each of the 75 booths. CRUSH Gala Grand Tasting
runs Saturday, Nov. 8, from 9 to 11:15 p.m.