Best Wine Festivals in the US

Wine offers the perfect excuse to travel. Across the country, wine events and festivals provide the opportunity to taste and learn about wines, and often meet the winemakers, too. Whether you are a wine novice or trained expert, wine festivals are a great way to taste wines from many different wineries, try out new varieties, and enjoy entertainment. You might also find special festival-only discounts available on bottles and cases. So what are you waiting for? Check out some of the best wine festivals in 2014!

Austin Wine and Music Festival

Austin Wine and Music Festival

For a twist on the classic wine festival, check out the annual Austin Wine and Music Festival. This three-day festival held from April 25-27 will combine wine-focused events with one thing Austin is renowned for: live music. In addition to great concerts, this festival also features the chance to get to know local Texas wineries. Tasting events offer an introduction to the fifth-largest wine producing state in the country. Be sure to purchase your tickets in advance and make a reservation at one of Austin's many charming B&Bs.

BB&T Charleston Wine + Food Festival

BB&T Charleston Wine + Food Festival

To learn about wine and food with a Southern twist, plan a trip to the Charleston Wine and Food Festival. This annual event takes places from March 6 through March 9, with activities spread over four days. There are more than 80 events total, many showcasing the distinct flavors of Lowcountry cooking. Many events are wine-focused, with an emphasis on pairing wines with food. Taste while you learn about wines at events such as sommelier talks, showcases of regional wines, and formal dinners with wine pairings. While you’re there, get to know the historic character of the city by staying at a Charleston bed and breakfast. In addition to a cozy place to rest between festival days, you’ll have a local expert who will guide you to the city’s best attractions.

California Wine Festival

California Wine Festival

You can't talk about the best wine festivals in the US without talking about California. The California Wine Festival is held in two locations; the 10th Annual California Wine festival in Santa Barbara will be from July 17-19, and the fourth annual California Wine Festival in Orange County from April 25-26.These festivals give you the opportunity to taste hundreds of wines from the state’s best vintage wines and sample gourmet foods. With over 300 wines to sample, the festival provides attendees plenty of spit buckets and water. Learn how to pair the delicious wines with free appetizers such as cheeses, olive oils, and breads. Live music adds to the fun. The event also has a silent auction; items include exotic large format bottles of top-tier wines and wine country trips.

New York City Wine and Food Festival

New York City Wine and Food Festival

From October 16-19, wine and food enthusiasts gather for the annual New York City Wine and Food Festival. Dozens of events are spread throughout Manhattan (and Brooklyn) over the course of a weekend. One event not to miss is the grand tasting, held on a pier on the Hudson River. A ticket to this event grants access to the dozens of wines and spirits available for tasting. Winemakers share their tips about pairings, aging, and storage. If you want the real New York experience, be sure to look into staying at one of the many Manhattan bed and breakfasts in the area.

Pittsburgh Wine Festival

Pittsburgh Wine Festival

For more than 10 years, wine enthusiasts have traveled to Pittsburgh for the annual Pittsburgh Wine Festival. The central event of the festival is the Grand Tasting, where hundreds of wineries gather in one place to offer tastings and answer questions about their wines. This festival also offers unique events, such as wine dinners in select Pittsburgh restaurants and educational seminars. Experience Pennsylvania like a local by making reservations at a Pittsburgh bed and breakfast.

VeritageMiami

VeritageMiami

Wine lovers will gather in Miami from April 9-12 for VeritageMiami, which was previously known as the United Way Miami Wine and Food Festival. This four-day festival is not only an opportunity to learn about wine, but also to support a good cause. Benefits from the festival go toward supporting the United Way in Miami-Dade County. This festival features a unique “Best in Glass” wine competition, events showcasing top sommeliers from around the country, and prestigious wineries that are enthusiastic about sharing the latest news about their award-winning wines. If you plan on attending, be sure to make your reservation at a Miami bed and breakfast or inn.