Tasting Stories: A New Neighborhood Tradition in North Dakota
Written by Alyson Aiello on February 20, 2018
Have you ever wondered what it’s like to Host a Traveling Vineyard wine tasting? Introducing Tasting Stories from Traveling Vineyard, where we bring you inside a real wine tasting party and tell you what made the event memorable and fun for the Host and their Guests! Tasting Stories are inspired by Five Star reviews submitted by real Hosts.
Neighbors become more neighborly when they spend time together—from monthly book clubs to supper clubs, it’s all about building and nurturing a sense of community. Wine Guide Heather Abar has discovered that exploring wine is a perfect reason for neighbors to get together. In fact, this month, Heather will conduct her sixth neighborhood wine tasting! Here is the story of how Heather has inspired a new neighborhood tradition.
Host Kelly Berntsen decided to host her own neighborhood wine tasting party in Grand Forks, North Dakota, after attending Heather’s first neighborhood wine tasting event.
“I love to throw a party and I really enjoyed my time at the Traveling Vineyard event. I had never been to one, so I decided to throw a party myself … it was right in between Thanksgiving and Christmas so it was a great excuse to unwind and have fun with friends,” Kelly says.
Kelly served up “wintry-type comfort foods” like savory dips and hot appetizers along with sweet treats like dark chocolate-covered cherries. Heather helped Kelly pair the menu with five bottles of wine, including our 2016 Jitterbug Sauvignon Blanc, California and 2016 Oja! Monastrell Syrah, Yecla.
Heather engaged the group of wine connoisseurs-in-training by sharing wine wisdom along with humor and storytelling. One of Heather’s favorite memories from Kelly’s event was the “wine paper plate game,” during which
Guests placed a clean paper plate on their heads, and were asked to draw a picture—an ice breaker that always leads to big laughs. Heather also enjoyed the crowd of laid-back, “really fun” Guests!
“My friends all enjoyed a night of relaxation, great food, amazing wine—and I feel that they each learned a little something different!”
For Kelly, the event was an opportunity to get her friends together (without the kiddos) and learn more about wine.
“I never really learned about how to tell if a wine is light-, medium- or full-bodied. The swirling in the glass and watching the ‘legs’ was fun! Something I will do from here on out!”
Kelly also discovered that she likes sweet wines, which surprised her. She is now a fan of Double Date Sweet American Rosé—and she is now a REWINED subscriber, which means she is getting her favorite Traveling Vineyard wines, like Double Date, on repeat every other month!
The neighborhood tastings with Heather are also on repeat. Each one has been unique!
“The fun part is that after being at five parties now, each time there are a few different wines to taste,” Kelly says.
While Wine Guide Heather loves introducing new wines and teaching her Hosts and Guests new things, she says they have also “taught me something new.” Her advice for a great tasting? “Have fun right along with them.”
If you’re interested in Hosting a Traveling Vineyard wine tasting at home, drop us a line and we will connect you with a Wine Guide near you! Come tasting with us and create your own story!