Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Rouge et Blanc 2015

I attended Rouge et Blanc for the first time last year. It's a terrific fun event, though despite the fact they welcome 1750 patrons each year, it is nonetheless very difficult to obtain tickets. They sell out in a day or less. You can read about my experience at last year's event here.

I attended Rouge et Blanc again this year, but I experienced it from the other side of a wine vendor table. Bob and I volunteered as wine pourers.

Bob manned the Gallo tent. I stood two tents away and poured vino from Oak Ridge Winery. "We have a slightly sweet chardonnay, a pinot noir, a red blend, and two Zinfandels -- the difference is the age of the vines. This one is from old vines age 50-80 years old and this one is from ancient vines, 100-120 years old." I had my spiel down after the first couple patrons and said it who knows how many hundreds of times yesterday. "This wine is from Lodi, California."

The wines I served seemed to be a hit with the patrons. Oak Ridge reds are full-bodied and robust. Certainly on the dry side. But the chardonnay is sweeter than the average dry white wine. Several patrons came back for seconds and thirds. It is interesting to observe the change in their sobriety levels as the event progresses.

Four hours flies by quickly when you're pouring wine for a steady stream of oenophiles. And it's lots of fun when a friend or acquaintance stops by to visit and sample the wine. Bob and I enjoy volunteering because it's a great way to participate and help out a worthy cause. Rouge et Blanc is a fundraiser for the Banners Series, something Bob and I have enjoyed for many years. You can read a post I wrote years ago on Banners here.

After the event, the organizers host an after-party for volunteers, with special food and all the leftover wine.

If you want to attend Rouge et Blanc next year, verify the date tickets go on sale, mark your calendar, and call early. Or sign up to be a volunteer!

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