National Harbor Food and Wine Festival

I bought the tickets months ago for Veronica’s birthday.  Finally, the end of April was upon us and it was time to enjoy a day on the water in National Harbor for the Food and Wine Festival.  This was something that we had been looking forward to for some time.  After packing some snacks, Veronica and I started our trek to the Metro station.

We arrived at the King Street metro station with no issues and grabbed a taxi to head over to the festivities.  Purchasing VIP tickets and arriving early helped, as we did not have to wait in a single line for the first hour.  When we showed up we saw many white tents covering the lot near the water.  As we entered we discovered that the VIP section was located on the pier that stretched out over the water.  We knew this was going to be a great day.

When entering, the staff handed us our glasses and we headed to the first station.  Boordy Winery was our first stop.  We have enjoyed their wines before and were glad to see the variety they displayed for tasting.  As we tried their wines, we talked with them about their many festivals and concerts they plan over the summer.  This excited the two of us and we can’t wait to head up there over the summer.

I was amazed by the variety of libations that were at the festival to sample.  They had more than just wine, which was awesome!  They had Makers Mark, Basil Hayden, Knob Creek, Bookers, Bakers, and an array of all their companies’ different bourbons.  I was in heaven and tried them all. They also had a great craft brewery section that highlighted summer ales. This was a fun area; we talked with the staff about the different hops used for the summer ales.

At this point, I had my eye on the Cigar booth.  We strolled over and I grabbed myself a nice A Fuente Anejo After my purchase, we decided to start tasting some wines, before I lit the cigar. IMG_3930 We started off with ones we knew to get the ball rolling.  After we had a few tastes, we branched off and tried things we had not tried before; a lot of varieties from Cabs to blends to different sparkling wines.  This soon led us to the VIP area which we had yet to experience.

Veronica and I walked to the pier.  Through the gates and immediately to the left was the Johnny Walker station.  This booth displayed all of their higher end Whiskeys.  It was awesome you could taste as much of the Blue label as you wanted. Right past them was the Silver Oak booth.  Veronica and I love Silver Oak wine and order a magnum bottle every year for the holidays.  It was a pleasant sight to see California wines.  We stayed at their booth for a while and spoke with many of the venders about the event and how great their wine is.

As we strolled down the pier, we noticed lots of free food to sample.  There were ribs, peri peri chicken wings, sliders, pulled pork, oysters being shucked as you ordered them, and some wonderful gazpacho with smoked sable fish.  This was amazing, and by this time we were starving.  We grabbed a glass of vino and walked as we sampled the tasty bites they offered.

After trying all the great food, we proceed to tasting more of the fine wines.  One new wine that Veronica and I were told about was the Sabastiani Winery, a wine that neither one of us had tried before.  They were superb. From their 2012 Sebastiani Cherryblock Cabernet Sauvignon to their 2012 Gravel Bed Cabernet Sauvignon, Alexander Valley to their 2012 Old Vine Cabernet Sauvignon, Sanoma Country.  They had flavors of cherries, blackberries, hints of espresso, cassis, cigar box, and sandalwood.  Each wine was rated a 90 or higher.  These won numerous awards to include the California State Fair.

Once we were done tasting these incredible wines, we decided to relax and sit on the water to enjoy the scenery while I smoked my cigar.  This cigar was smooth, dark, and oddly enough complemented the Silver Oak I was drinking.  We sat for about an hour enjoying the sun and being on the water.  The champagne toast at 5:30pm came quick and we thanked everyone for a great day they provided us.  This was a day that was full of fun, new experiences, great scenery, great food and excellent wine.


Veronica and I are already planning on attending the event next year.  Until my next day off………

Published by anotherchefsdayoff

I am the Chef de Cuisine at Chevy Chase Club in Chevy Chase, Maryland and I have worked at many other clubs on the West Coast. I am from Sacramento, California and moved out to Maryland almost 2 years ago.

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