Whether it’s red or white, guests can expect a chilly glass of vino at the Columbus Winter Wine Festival.
The first Columbus Winter Wine Festival, hosted by event management firm MGN and alternative rock station CD102.5 FM, will showcase a variety of wines from across the country and abroad next week. The festival will feature tastings, music, food and art Feb. 29 at Brewmaster’s Gate.
“It’s going to be a celebration of wine for people that come and sample and discover new — and their new favorite wines,” Randy Malloy, the owner, president and general manager of 102.5 FM, said.
Individuals aged 21 and older who purchase a ticket to the event will receive 10 wine sample tickets and a commemorative wine sampling glass, according to the event’s Facebook page. Money from ticket purchases will go toward CD102.5 For the Kids, the radio station’s fundraising arm, which donates to causes such as the Special Olympics, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, and Ronald McDonald House, Mallow said.
Wines from 15 to 20 brands will be supplied through Heidelberg Distributing, but a final list of brands and varieties is forthcoming.
The festival complements its summer counterpart, which is entering its third year and focuses more on local wines, Malloy said.
Malloy said 19 local artists are painting 4-by-4 wine-inspired panels for the festival in collaboration with Art Makes Columbus/Columbus Makes Art, a campaign that emphasizes cooperation in the Columbus, Ohio, community.
Malloy said artist participation is important because wine is a typical component of the high-brow museum and gallery culture, and he wants to make the beverage more accessible to people who might not regularly attend those types of events.
Todd Steiner, a research associate in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science at Ohio State who studies winemaking, said the beverage has long been a staple of European culture, but wineries have more recently become a destination for Americans as well.
The festival aims to bring upscale and everyday wine culture together, Malloy said.
“We wanted to make you aware of it. It doesn’t need to be thought that way,” he said. “Wine is accessible to everybody, and — of legal age, of course — that’s accessible to everybody of every culture, every race, and it’s something that you can enjoy with meals, having a conversation, discussing world events.”
The Winter Wine Festival is broken into two sessions: noon to 4 p.m. and 4 to 8 p.m. Feb. 29 at Brewmaster’s Gate, located at 495 S. Front St. Tickets are $30 online and $35 at the gate.