In just five weeks, wine enthusiasts can see red, white, and rosé in the beautiful, award-winning town of Seaside, Florida. The Seeing Red Wine Festival, produced in partnership with the Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation, will celebrate it’s 26th year from November 3 – 6, 2016.
The four-day festival, which has been recognized as one of the ‘Top 10 Can’t-Miss Fall Wine Festivals’ by Fodor’s Travel, will feature some of the world’s premier vintners, proprietors and beloved local chefs. Attendees can walk around Central Square while sipping on delectable wines in the iconic beach town of Seaside.
This year, The 30A Company is honored to be included in the festival and we will be featuring our new 30A Red Blend and 30A Chardonnay at the Grand Tasting on Sunday and the Charity Wine Auction Walkabout and Walkabout on Sunday. Please stop by and see us!
Will Mercer, owner of Mercer Estates, the esteemed Washington-state winery where our 30A Wines are produced, will also be making an appearance at a special vintner dinner to kick off the festival Thursday night.
Check out this 30A Radio interview highlighting the festival. Guests include Chef Jim Shirley, Bud & Alley’s owner Dave Rauschkolb, Kevin Boyle with updates on fall SEASIDE events and John Russell with the Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation.
Check out this video from the 2015 festival:
“We are absolutely honored to partner with Seaside to produce this long-standing event,” said John Russell, president of Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation. “Many of these vintners have become our friends as we have been fundraising for children in need in Northwest Florida for 11 years. Building on the festival’s long-standing history coupled with the reputation of the Foundation, we’ve been able to include exclusive wines and rare varietals.”
The four days of festivities include reserve wine tastings, dinners and a brunch with featured guest winemakers.
Several of Seaside’s well-known restaurants showcase their farm-to-fork and Gulf-to-table offerings, which pair beautifully with the featured wines.
The celebration kicks off Thursday, November 3, at 7 p.m. with the Vintner’s Dinner at the famed Bud & Alley’s restaurant. Executive Chef David Bishop has created a special menu in collaboration with Will Mercer of Mercer Winery, the featured vintner. A limited number of reservations are available, and reservations can be made by calling the restaurant.
On Friday, November 4, the Al Fresco Reserve Tasting, from 6 to 8 p.m., is an elegant evening showcasing an incredible selection of library wines, featuring vintages that have been cellared to be uncorked at just the right time. An array of hors d’oeuvres will pair perfectly with the featured wines, in addition to Southern Artisan Chocolates made by Olive and Sinclair Co. The evening is complemented by live music under twinkling lights on Seaside’s Lyceum Lawn. The price per ticket for the Al Fresco Reserve Tasting is $250. A limited number of tickets are available.
The Grand Tasting, from 1 to 4 p.m., on Saturday, November 5, is the main event and features more than 250 wines for tasting. Guests will spend the afternoon strolling through Seaside’s Central Square sipping an extensive array of highly sought after wines from around the world, while enjoying live music, light bites from South Walton’s leading local restaurants, and the opportunity to purchase wine on-site. General admission tickets are available at $175.
VIP Grand Tasting ticket holders will receive early admission to the Grand Tasting at 12:30 p.m. for the first taste of the day as well as access to the VIP lounge at beginning at noon, which is furnished with local fare, an exclusive library of wines and libations. The VIP lounge will also feature a “meet and greet” with wine celebrities personally signing bottles of their premium wines featured at the festival. In addition, VIP check-in attendees will receive a Seeing Red Wine Festival cooler bag with festival merchandise. The price of VIP tickets is $325.
On Sunday, November 6, the weekend wraps up with a Celebration of Bubbles, from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., at Great Southern Café in Seaside, followed by the Charity Wine Auction & Walkabout, from 1 – 4 p.m. in Seaside on Lyceum Lawn.
The Celebration of Bubbles features sparkling wines, including Champagne, Cava, and Prosecco, among others, which will be complemented by delectable brunch items. Live music and new friends make for a fun, festival morning on the coast. To reserve your spot, call Great Southern after November 1.
From 1 – 4 p.m., the Fall Walkabout & Charity Auction will feature wines, food stations, live music and our famous “Hangover Station” with Bloody Marys and mimosas. The event is enhanced by a silent auction, featuring items such as rare wines, exclusive dinners, vacation packages, and artwork. This is truly a local’s favorite.
Proceeds from the Seeing Red Wine Festival will be presented to the Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation, which supports 14 local non-profits, serving children in need in Northwest Florida.
The Foundation’s signature event, the Destin Charity Wine Auction, is held annually the last weekend of April at Grand Boulevard at Sandestin. In 2016, the auction raised $2.65 million for children in need and has been ranked among the top 10 charity wine auctions in the country by Wine Spectator Magazine for the last four consecutive years.
Presenting sponsors for the 26th Annual Seeing Red Wine Festival include Coastal Living, The Merchants of Seaside, The Seaside Style, and 45 Central Wine Bar in Seaside.
Free parking and shuttle service will be provided from the Publix at WaterColor Crossings on County Road 395.