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Monday, September 14, 2009

Food And Wine Festivals

Everyone knows about the annual food and wine festivals in Aspen, Sonoma and Napa Valley. Sometimes the smaller, less infamous festivals are best, due to the fact that there isn't hysteria getting a flight into town and practically no photographers taking up hotel rooms and causing the redirecting of traffic.
Few things in life give me greater pleasure than a fabulous meal and a nice glass of wine in a new locale. I've been known to plot vacations around scored dinner reservations of a notorious restaurant or plan a beach vacation around the best seafood restaurants, or map out days in NYC around cafes, bakeries and wine bars. For me, every travel opportunity is an epicurean journey, but my favorites are the local food and wine festivals, the ultimate celebrations of gourmet delights.

Taste of THE Beach, Northwest Florida
November in the Florida Panhandle is the perfect time to celebrate. The summer crowds have left the beaches of South Walton and have been replaced by the Autumn Tide-a three month long celebration of the area's rich culinary and cultural offerings. Last year was the Inaugural festival that included wine and food tastings and dinners from Panama City to Destin. I recommend staying in Rosemary Beach or Seaside.  Rosemary Beach is beautiful and sophisticated with Sunday jazz brunches on the beach. Seaside is more about casual beach attire. Either way it will be just what you desire.

The Second Annual Taste of THE Beach takes place Nov 5-8. Tickets are sold separately for individual events; visit; for information, or contact the Seaside Cottage Rental Agency for Seeing Red Wine Festival packages.
If you would like to stay in Rosemary Beach, visit;