In my opinion, the best wine and food event in Des Moines is still the annual Wine and Food Showcase. I make sure that I don’t miss this event just as I try not to miss any of the operas at the Des Moines Metro Opera (Don Giovanni this year!). The food is great (and plentiful) and the wine tastings are about as broad as you can get at this level. This is a great way to sample some of the new U.S. and international wines that the wine distributors are bringing to market. From what I can tell, they usually uncork a lot of winners that are great for the price. Glazer’ of Iowas, Global Wines Distribution, Vine Street Imports, and Johnson Brothers will all be there. There will also be the usual domestic and international beer distributors along with Goose Island, Madhouse, Millstream, and Olde Main. For Iowa wine lovers, the selection will be as small as usual with Tassel Ridge being the only one on the list. This year’s event is set for February 17, 2012 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Des Moines Marriott. One additional feature that makes this event special are the auctions. Last year some collectors put their wines out for auction and there were some very interesting selections up for bid.
Don’t eat before you get there because food is provided by Café di Scala, Crème Cupcake + Desserts, Gusto, Maytag, sbrocco, splash, Tartine, and a dozen more. They go all out and make great dishes.
Don’t be put off by the $50 ticket price. It is well worth it. VIP tickets are $100 and they get to start in an hour early. The money goes to support the Des Moines Metro Opera, so it is for a good cause. Of course I’m biased and happen to like opera.