The World of Wine Festival is the first event (of, hopefully, many) that The Cellar is organising and sponsoring. It is important to us to be involved in sharing our love and passion of all things vinous to the wine lovers of New Zealand.
I wanted to take moment out to just summarise why it is important to me, Connal, the Director of The Cellar to do events like this.
I love New Zealand just as much as the sandy-jandal wearing-kiwi that you will run in to as you pop in to your local Four Square or dairy this summer to get your iceblock after a hot day at the beach. However, as someone who has decided to become certified as an expert in the world of wine it irks me that there is still no real knowledge of international wine in New Zealand. I long for my time spent in markets like New York and London where it appears that everyone seems to know just 'that' much more than your average kiwi. I am not taking a stab at the locals of my homeland on the contrary, I am wanting to bring about that knowledge in a fun and exciting way. I understand that London and New York where not always like this. It took people like myself to get up off their bums to start talking and educating people. Together we can come together and celebrate our world and how great people are for creating such amazing beverages the world-over.
People often get a bit funny when the subject of wine comes up. The wine trade is either viewed as a bunch of drunks or snobs, or drunken snobs. Sadly that can all too often be the case but there is an emerging group, of which I am proudly a part of, that is young and wanting to bring about a change. I have never promoted cheap wine, bad wine, or the idea of drinking in excess. That is both irresponsible and sad. I have always opted for quality over quantity - that doesn't mean I have forced my customers in to nothing but $50+ bottles of wine. One of my strong points is to find great value wines at all price points - value being the key!
My one and only goal to start The Cellar, and to create The World of Wine Festival, was to bring people in touch with the unknown. If the only place you can buy wine in NZ is the supermarket, liquor store, or a small handful of independent wine stores, where staff have little or limited knowledge and where the range is limited to this months discounted-specials, with nothing more than a handful of 'international wines' at best all lumped together in the back gathering dust, then I think we as a wine producing country really need to up our game. For those that have ever travelled to Italy, France, or Spain, and fell in love with the wines and wanted to recreate that experience back home, it is of no surprise that the $12 bottle of Tempranillo at the bottom of the supermarket isn't going to cut it. I want to show people that there is great wine out there from all over the world and that those wines aren't exclusively found there. I take great pride in hosting tastings where people can try these wines or personally curating mixed wine case selections for my customers. I love to transport people to California or Sardinia all whilst being able to enjoy the view of Rangitoto.
For all of those outside of my mother and the person who accidentally got bounced on to this post by Google, I urge you to come to The World of Wine Festival. It is the first time anything like this has ever happened. NZ's first Global Wine Tasting Event, in fact. There will be wines from 14 different countries with over 140 wines on the Tasting Floor to taste through - even more in the bar. I've wrangled in world leading wine experts and winemakers to come over and host a range of unforgettable masterclasses too.
Tickets are $45 for students and $60 for adults. All tickets include a Riedel wine glass (RRP $25) to taste with and take home and UNLIMITED tastes of all the wines on the floor.
Master Classes are just $25 (or $20 when bought with a GA ticket). 10 in total, 5 each day.
It is going to be on the Sat 12th and Sun 13th of May, 12-6pm, at AUT's main foyer area. Which is centrally located in Auckland City's CBD - right opposite the Auckland Art Gallery and Albert Park.
Bring your curiousity! I'll see you there :)