The fourth annual Gloucester Wine Festival, which was held on Saturday, Oct. 28, drew in more than 1,500 attendees, according to Makalia Records, executive director of the Gloucester County Chamber of Commerce, which sponsored the event at Brent & Becky’s Bulbs and the Bulb Shoppe and Gardens in Ware Neck.
That number almost doubled the 800 attendees from the 2012 event. Ten Virginia wineries were represented at the festival, and offered their best wines to tasters in attendance. Saudé Creek Vineyards was honored at the end of the day with the coveted "Best in Pour" award, as decided by popular vote in a secret ballot contest.
Of the opportunity to host the wine festival for a second consecutive year, Brent & Becky’s general manager Jay Hutchins said that they "were honored to be selected as the host … We were pleased to see the sun this year and even more pleased to see 1,500 people walk into our gardens smiling, enjoying the shopping, music, and more importantly the finest in Virginia wines. We basically just opened the doors and let the Chamber of Commerce, its sponsors, and the volunteers take over; and we thought that they did a great job putting on this hugely popular event."
Fifty vendors were set up throughout the gardens, both local and those who traveled from across the state, many of them chamber members. Chamber vice president and local restaurateur Juan Carrillo has set up an onsite restaurant at the wine festival for the past two years. He said the event is always a great time, that he loves hearing the positive feedback, and is already looking forward to next year.
Martha Soles, owner of The Silver Box on Main Street, is a new chamber member and a first-time vendor at the wine festival. "Overall it was a good day and a great opportunity for exposure," Soles said. "It was so well organized and I’m grateful for all the planning that went into such an event—many wonderful organizations in Gloucester volunteering for the benefit of our county."
seminars open to all business owners, and the local scholarship for a Gloucester High School student, as well as helping other charitable organizations within Gloucester as the opportunity arises.