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Saratoga Wine, Food, and Ferrari Festival 2011

Monday, September 12th, 2011 · No Comments

Few things go together like wine, food, and Ferraris. Throw in some blue skies and warm sun, and you’ve got a perfect weekend here in Saratoga Springs.

Not since 2004 when Jen and I had just moved to Saratoga had we been to the Saratoga Wine, Food, and Ferrari Festival, and after all the great fun, delicious food, and fine wine we enjoyed Saturday, we wondered why we hadn’t made it an annual outing; making it one seems like a no-brainer.

As an invited blogger guest of the Italian Trade Commission, I even brought our 5-month-old daughter on Saturday and, of course, she was a hit throughout the festival. Said a woman at one of the tasting tables, “You can’t come here and not let us see your baby!”

From the event’s website:

The 2011 Saratoga Wine & Food and Fall Ferrari Festival presented by the Italian Trade Commission, takes place September 9, 10 & 11 in Saratoga Springs, NY. Presented in partnership with the Saratoga Automobile Museum, this three-day festival, a fundraiser to support education programs at SPAC and the Automobile Museum, encompasses a series of unique events showcasing global excellence in wine, food and design.

The Ferraris are a fairly new addition to the weekend line-up in the last few years, and they fit right in with the event.

A number of Ferraris and other fine autos greeted us outside the grounds of SPAC on the lawn of the Saratoga Auto Museum, whetting our appetite for the afternoon.

Inside SPAC, more Ferraris and Fiats circled the lawn on the picture-perfect day, including an incredibly rare 60-HP 1907 Fiat, one of just five made and the only one known to still exist. To oohs and aahs of the crowd, we even got to hear the 104-year-0ld engine fire up without missing a beat.

Beyond the cars, a series of giant, interconnected tents overtook the SPAC lawn. As we stepped inside the first tent, our ears filled with the cheerful din of people who’d come from far and wide to taste the wines and food.

Armed with our tasting glasses, Jen and I wasted no time filling them at the first stop of the day, Fish Hook Vineyards. Throughout the afternoon, we tried a series of reds, whites, and sparkling wine from wineries and distributors including J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines, Adobe Road Winery, Barefoot Wine & Bubbly, and lots more. We enjoyed a delicious sample of New Hampshire-based Cabin Fever maple whiskey, which was one of the highlights of the day for us. I also sampled a concoction of limoncello and 46 Peaks vodka, a local potato vodka from Lake Placid Spirits, named for the Adirondack high peaks.

Along the way we also tasted a variety of delicious food from Saratoga and surrounding area restaurants:

  • Marché: shrimp grits & beet / blue cheese salad (savory & flavorful)
  • Friends Lake Inn: pumpkin bisque (just sweet enough & super-tasty)
  • Sperry’s: salmon cakes (Jen and I recently celebrated our 8-year anniversary at Sperry’s, and they never fail to deliver)
  • Hattie’s: bean, bacon, and summer vegetable salad
  • Prime: cauliflower ravioli (wow)
  • Irish Times: chilled potato leek soup

As if Saturday’s festivities weren’t fun enough, my dad — in town this weekend visiting his granddaughter (oh, and I suppose his son and daughter-in-law, too) from the San Francisco Bay Area — joined me for Sunday’s jazz brunch at Saratoga National, where we enjoyed a delicious buffet with food such as broccoli rabe, risotto, frittata, and French toast. Another beautiful day, the Ferraris were once again on display.

Such a great weekend and yet another example of what makes Saratoga a special place. I look forward to enjoying the festival again next year!

Tags: saratoga springs