Newport is home to many fascinating, enlightening, and fun events every year. One of the most delicious events is the Newport Mansions Wine and Food Festival. Attendees are treated to elegant glasses of wine, superb food samples, and expansive ocean views. Now in its 17th year running, the event is quite sophisticated yet it appeals to everyone from those with cultivated palates to foodies in training to those who just want to experience something new.
When is the Wine and Food Festival?
The 2022 festival will be held over three days in September. Attendees can purchase tickets for events on September 16, 17, or 18, or all three days if they desire. The long weekend features 24 seminars with the first being held on Friday at 11 am and the last starting on Sunday at 3:30 pm.
How Much Does it Cost to Attend the Festival?
Many events and festivals charge a single amount for people to attend the entire festival. This event is unique as it works on an a la carte basis. Attendees can pick and choose the seminars and dinners that they are interested in and only pay for those events. The seminars this year are focused on being intimate and educational. Most seminars are limited to 50 people. Individual events tickets range from $80 to $350. Some fans attend one seminar a day in order to give full attention to each day’s experience. Some devotees pack as much as possible into a single day of tasting and learning. With the price structure of the festival, everyone can build the event that works best for them.
Where are the Festival Events Held?
All of the seminars will be held at Rosecliff Mansion. Rosecliff was commissioned by Theresa Fair Oelrichs in 1899. Three years and $2.5 million later the house was complete. The mansion has a strong French ambiance as it was modeled after the garden retreat of French kings at Versailles. The last private owners gifted the mansion, its furnishings, and an endowment to the Preservation Society in 1971.
Watch for special wine lunches and dinners to be held at award-winning restaurants in Newport as part of the Festival Restaurant Program. More information about those events will be posted as the event gets closer.
There are also plans for a “Newport After Dark” party. Details and location for the event have not yet been released.
Rosecliff is available for daily tours from 10 am until 3 pm. (The mansion is closed to all except Wine and Food Festival attendees from September 16-18.) If parts of the mansion seem familiar, you may recognize them from scenes in films such as The Great Gatsby (1974), True Lies (1994), Amistad (1997), and 27 Dresses (2008). The rose gardens along the Cliff Walk are not to be missed.
How Long Are the Seminars?
Each seminar lasts approximately one hour. Not to worry, these are seated seminars so you will be able to relax while sampling and learning. Seminars are led by experts in their field. Attendees may learn about the history of the wine from that region. They may sample trending wines. Participants may delve into the complexities of a single style of wine that is made in many regions of the world.
What Kind of Food Will be at the Event?
There are a few full meal events along with some food seminars. The Friday evening dinner boasts Italian foods specially paired with Italian wines. The Sunday brunch features station-style food matched with six Israeli wines. Of course you cannot have wine without cheese. There is an entire seminar dedicated to the artisan cheese experience.
Are the Featured Wines from Newport or Rhode Island?
This festival celebrates wine made from around the world. Attendees can expect to find wine from California, Chile, France, the country of Georgia, Israel, Italy, New Zealand, Oregon, South Africa, Spain, and Ukraine. Wines will run the spectrum from sweet to dry, from sparkling to rose, and from white to red.
Is Wine the Only Alcoholic Beverage Available at the Festival?
While technically called the Wine and Food Festival, the event planners know that people enjoy more than just wine. There is a seminar on Montelobos Mezcal, Drumshanbo Gunpowder Irish Gin, Mount Gay Rum, pisco (which is a South American brandy), Woodford Reserve Bourbon, and beers of the world. No matter what your drink of choice is, there is a seminar for you.
Newport Mansions Wine & Food Festival events are sold out except for the restaurant wine dinner series: www.newportmansions.org/events/wine-and-food-festival/restaurant-program-2022