Last weekend was Valentine’s Day, which, in my world, can be spent in no better place than with the ones you love and with plenty of booze. This year I had the opportunity to attend the Boston Wine Expo with my boyfriend for a wonderful Valentine’s Day of love, wine, and fun.
The Boston Wine Expo is hosted Valentine’s Day weekend in Boston. This year we were expecting a blizzard of epic proportions – estimated to have the strength of a Category 2 hurricane. I had been biting my nails all week, praying that my boyfriend would be able to fly in from Los Angeles and that the Boston Wine Expo would still go on.
This was our first Valentine’s Day together (aww!) and I was hoping that the plans I made for us wouldn’t be ruined. Someone must have been listening because my Valentine flew in on time Friday night and by Saturday afternoon we were trudging through the blizzard to the Seaport Hotel and World Trade Center. Despite Sunday’s Grand Tasting cancellation because of the storm, Saturday’s event was great!
Neither myself nor my boyfriend had ever attended the Boston Wine Expo so we were excited to experience it together. The Expo did not disappoint! A big supporter of small businesses and startups, I was happy to see a number of small wineries and local Boston companies as well as small businesses from different parts of the country…and wine, of course.
The World Trade Center is huge and between the food demonstrations, wine-inspired shops, and tastings, there was a lot to see! Sectioned with rows of wines on the inside and food and companies on the perimeter, the Expo was surprisingly easy to navigate despite its size. I enjoyed the New York and Florida wine sections – two states overlooked for their production in the wine industry. There were 25 wineries from New York present and it was the first time that NY wineries took part in the Boston Wine Expo.
On the Boston front, my fan-girl favorite Boston wine company, 90+ Cellars was holding court in the center of the room. They had 4 pallet tables set up for tasting both 90+ Cellars and Ironside Cellars wines. I had been meaning to try Ironside wines and was happy to get to taste their Cabernet Sauvignon.
But in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I was on the hunt for something pink and fun to drink. Not that I need any excuse for rosé, but nothing says Valentine’s Day like pink wine. The good folks at 90+ Cellars sent me over to Gerard Bertrand for some of their Crémant Rosé and Gris Blanc. Monsieur Bertrand was on point with his delicate bubbles and crystalline rosé.
Wine app and local Boston startup, Drync, was a sponsor of the event. The Drync app, which allows you to scan, rate, find, and buy wine you love, was keeping track of the most popular wines.
Throughout the day, the Drync team rushed from table to table awarding the “trending” wines on their app with a flag. This not only made the Expo exciting and tied to social media, but it also allowed for attendees to easily follow the user-rated best wines of the day. I’m not exactly a wine connoisseur, so I appreciated being able to rely on the taste buds of Drync users who probably know more than I do about wine.
Once we were tasted-out, the shopping began. Second Glass, the company behind Wine Riot and wine inspired t-shirts, had a table set up at the event. I had seen their shirts before and jumped at the chance to grab one at a reduced Expo price. There’s nothing like shopping after drinking wine, am I right?
My boyfriend and I snagged matching “Drink Wicked Local” shirts in Boston colors, purely by coincidence and not at all because I’m a weirdo who wanted matching shirts. He got the t-shirt and I got the tank top so we’re arguably not really matching. I love the tank top – cute and soft and perfect for anywhere, including the best yoga studio in Boston where I prefer to sweat out the alcohol I consume.
Despite the weather dumping buckets of snow upon Boston, everyone was in good spirits. One of the things I loved about the Boston Wine Expo was that the crowd of attendees was a mix of different ages. Boston is a young city, which lends itself to bars full of a relatively homogeneous group of young professionals and college students. But the Expo drew people of varying ages and relationships – from couples to friends and groups of singles – just looking to have a fun Valentine’s Day.
I’m thankful to have had the opportunity to attend The 2015 Boston Wine Expo. We spent a snowy day drinking and learning about wine, patronizing small businesses, and having fun – a perfect first Valentine’s Day event in Boston!
Note: I received two free press passes to the Boston Wine Expo, but all opinions and sassiness are my own.