Niagara loves a good party. For anyone in the know, there’s always an upcoming party, festival or big occasion taking advantage of the local food and the changing of the seasons. These festivals and parties are part of the lifeblood of Niagara’s wine industry, and vice versa.
TD Tailgate Party in Niagara-on-the-Lake
The TD Tailgate Party is considered one of THE parties to attend amongst locals & tourists alike. Every year, the Grape Growers of Ontario association names a ‘Grape King’: an outstanding grape-grower and ambassador for the wine industry, voted for by his or her peers. One facet of the title in its current incarnation is that the current Grape King/Queen hosts the TD Tailgate Party.
For 2015/16, the director of viticulture at Pilliterri Estate, Jamie Slingerland, is the Grape King – and therefore the 2016 Tailgate Party is due for the Pilliterri Icevine Vineyard, inland from Niagara-on-the-Lake.
The party is a chance for local vineyards to gather – generally representatives from at least forty estates are expected. Bringing their recent vintages and summer blends, it’s a great chance for the public and wine producers to share stories with the general public, eager to soak up some wine culture.
Food & Wine
Wine wouldn’t be complete without the food and festive atmosphere to match it, and so chefs are also on-site to use the local produce to their advantage, and the local soundtrack can vary depending on the acts available and the mood of the hosting vineyard-- but there’s always a fun and festive atmosphere.
The TD Tailgate Party has grown to become a lot of things at once: a celebration of the Grape King’s home estate and achievements, a new annual venue for other local winemakers to exhibit their latest creations, and a fun way for the public to enjoy the best wine & food pairings that the region has to offer.
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