Take part in Steamboat’s Grape Escape: a multi-day wine festival where oenophiles and new grape drinkers alike can imbibe without limitation in gorgeous Steamboat Springs. The Steamboat Wine Festival features local brewers and distillers like Spring 44 and Storm Peak, and boasts a list of wineries that include Francis Ford Coppola, Estancia, Hess Family Estates, and Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards. It’s like visiting Napa, but cheaper and with cowboys.
Over 500 unique wines, beers and spirits are featured in the wine festival. You’ll have the opportunity to take seminars like, “Want to Get High?” at bistro c.v., an exploration into Colorado wine country at altitude, or “California Dreamin’” which delves deep into the vineyards of Santa Barbara County, CA. But since this is Colorado, you’ll also have your chance to combine wine and play. Other seminars like “Savor the Single Track,” “SUP and Suds” and “Vino and Vinyasa” take you mountain biking, stand up paddleboarding, and to the yoga studio; you’ve also got a near-guarantee to start speaking in alliteration once you start drinking.
The Wine Festival hits downtown Steamboat on Friday night for The Stroll of Steamboat. Take your glass and walk down Lincoln Avenue and Yampa Street to discover new wines at downtown retailers and restaurants. Each stroll stop has wines and beers for you to try. Once you figure out what you like, you’ll have to end the weekend at the signature event, The Toast of Steamboat, on Saturday night at the mountain base area. This finale is held in Gondola Square with hundreds of wines and food from over two dozen local restaurants. There’s live music to serenade your way into a perfect evening.
The four-day festival stretches over a long weekend, so if you need to take a day off, don’t worry! You’ll still be able to spend 75% of your time drinking wine. After all, how will you know what to buy if you don’t sample most of them? The local liquor sponsor, Central Park Liquors, often puts featured wines on sale over the festival weekend, so make sure to stop by and stock up on your favorites before returning home.
The Steamboat Wine Festival is August 5-9, 2015.
Tickets are sold individually or as packages.