Everyone knows the Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival features some of the greatest chefs from LA and beyond. So much fanfare surrounds chefs like Michael Voltaggio, Nancy Silverton, and Sang Yoon but few media outlets highlight the fantastic wineries pouring at the event.
I had the opportunity to attend the Lexus Grand Tasting and it was a fantastic experience. The event featured over 300 wines from producers ranging from those who make around 1500 cases to internationally distributed, household names. I did some research on the wineries before I arrived to make sure I didn’t miss a great tasting opportunity. I had the chance to stop by about 20 of the different winery booths and found some amazing wines.
One of my first stops was Wind Gap Wines out of Sebastopol. I tasted their Rosé, Trousseau, and Syrah. The 2013 Wind Gap North Coast Rosé ended up being my favorite Rosé of the event. Bright tastes of red fruit along with white pepper, minerals, and healthy acidity left a lasting impression.
After visiting Wind Gap, I headed over to Red Car Wine. The entire lineup was well-made and their 2012 Sonoma Coast Pinot and 2012 Fort Ross-Seaview Pinot Noir were outstanding. Red Car’s wines are graceful, bright, and delicious.
One of the most unique wineries pouring at the Lexus Grand Tasting was Movia out of Slovenia. I had only tried wines from Slovenia one time before and, to be honest, what I tried wasn’t very good. Movia opened my eyes to the potential of wines from the region. I really enjoyed the Modri Pinot Noir…light, vibrant, and balanced.
Lots of other great wineries were present at the event including Baker & Brain, Flowers Vineyard & Winery, Tablas Creek, and Skylark Wine Company. There were also plenty of nationally known wineries pouring as well.
While the food and chefs definitely (and deservedly) get a lot of attention at the Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival, don’t forget about the wine. This is one of the best annual wine events in Southern California!