Earlier this month, Homorazzi got the fantastic opportunity to attend the extravagance that is Cornucopia. Hosted every year in Whistler, Cornucopia congregates local chefs, distilleries, wineries and restaurants to showcase their best in show to anyone needing a bite and a sip.
This is my fourth year attending the festival, and I’m never disappointed. Being in the wine industry, the whole spectacle of it all is completely up my alley, and although friends and I in the industry have dubbed it “Li’l Vegas“, what you do remember the next morning is having a rip-roarin’ good time every single night.
The festival itself carries on over five days in November every year, and offers everything from chef table dinners, to competitions, to a plethora of seminars, all leading up to the gigantic Crush Gala’s on the last two nights of the festival. This year you could do everything from attending a local chocolate and wine seminar, a red carpet high-end casino event at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler, or chat the night away at an endless oyster bar in one of Whistler’s most prestigious restaurants. The events are endless, and choosing what to do and when is really the only hard part.
This year I did attend the Crush Gala on the Friday night, and was met with a nicely dressed crowd tasting local and international wine in the Whistler Conference Centre Ballroom. Even though I do it for a living, being one of the biggest wine tastings I’ve been to never ceases to amaze me.
The seminars I attended were a great oppurtunity to soak in some knowledge, and everything from listening to Barb Philip, the only female Master of Wine in Canada, and her husband Iain talk about finding wines at every price point, hearing Wine Diva Daenna Van Mulligen or Kurtis Kolt throw fun classes about New Zealand wine that wasn’t Sauvignon Blanc or how to decide on proper wine and cheese pairings, to an exceptional class by a great panel presented by Wine Access Magazine on how to find the best bang for your buck, was all worth it and hardly felt like I was learning with a glass of vino in front of me at all times.
We ended our last night at Araxi for the indulgent Bubbles + Ocean event, and if you’re going to attend anything, this is a must. The best champagne houses our market has to offer, and an endless supply of Araxi’s delicious seafood, including an oyster bar that had me periodically preoccupied most of the night, is a great way to live up the festival.
Altogether, of course I’m going back again next year. Sure I’m a huge wine nerd and love what I do, but everybody from the novice to the expert can enjoy something at Cornucopia, and it’s one of those gems that I think anyone travelling to Whistler can and will enjoy.