Pair Reception will direct you to unparalleled food and wine events. Although no food and wine pairing education occurred during the “Guess The Varietal” contest, light cuisine was sold during this sensational, exciting, competitive event. However, Greenwood Ridge Vineyards did provide a tour of their vineyards which included amazing views of the valley and ridge!
Greenwood Ridge Vineyards in Mendocino, California, USA, had a wonderful contest for those who like to compete called the California Wine Tasting Championships. I’ve visited many wineries in Mendocino but I’ve never had more than the Guest The Varietal contest at Greenwood Ridge Vineyards. The objective was to guess the wine varietals of 4 white wines and 4 red wines. The wines were poured blind into your wine glass and you had 4 minutes to guess the varietal. The contest was divided into different levels – Novice, Amateur and Professional. There was a single’s and double’s competition for each level. Once you surpassed the first round, the second round required you to also guess the year the wine was made and to name the winery. The individuals and couples who guessed the most amount of varietals won the contest or placed either 2nd or 3rd. I participated in the single’s competition in 2006 and the double’s competition in 2007. The winery also provided a break area where food could be purchased and you could network with the other contestants. The event was allot fun! I took second place in the Novice doubles competition. The highlight of the event for me was when I guessed the year and name of the winery for one of the flight tastings. I stood up in excitement while many of the attendees clapped and one of my competitors jokingly asked, “what are you doing in the novice competition”? I competed with Marianna Green in the 2007 Doubles Novice Competition. Here’s more information on my historic win.
Here’s me in action. As you can see in the background, the wine was poured into decanters which in turn was poured into our wine glasses. Then the attendees had 4 minutes to “Guess the Varietal.”
Me and my partner’s score in the Novice Competition was “55.”
Our host and owner of Greenwood Ridge Vineyards Allan Green.
The contest has changed over the last two years into the “California Wine Pairing Championships.” Here’s how it works:
- Greenwood Ridge winery chooses two wines from their cellar
- Three competing chefs present dishes they create to complement the two wines
- Attending guests taste each pairing and vote for their favorites
The event is held during the second week in August and is for wine club members only! This contest is more about the chefs competing against one another than the attendees competing against one another. However, the attendees get to consume food paired with wines! Here’s more information on the contest:
For those of you who have the strong desire to compete, Pair Reception is your source for food & wine pairing events!