Last weekend we had the pleasure of attending the ninth annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic. The event was held Friday and Saturday evenings, Oct. 26 and 27, and featured the talents of the resorts best chefs and dozens of beverage vendors. We were invited by the Swan and Dolphin Resort to attend the event for this review and it included the opportunity to enjoy a seminar ahead of the main causeway event.
There are 11 different seminars offered at the Classic. We ended up attending the Wine Blending seminar — a $50 per person add-on that started at 4:30 p.m. and lasted right up until the Crescent Lake causeway opened for the full event at 5:30 p.m.
The enthusiastic and knowledgeable instructor Luciano Sperduto is a certified sommelier and director of Food & Beverage at the Swan and Dolphin. And he had his hands full with us, two people who know next to nothing about wine and typically opt for the strongest margarita we can find. I mean, my husband noticed a stain on his wine-blending pipette and called it “this straw thingy,” so, yeah, we’re pretty much elitists.
We started the seminar with six glasses of red: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec. Sperduto took us through each one, explaining them in detail before having us sample and then cleanse our palates with (my favorite part) a yummy cheese and bread spread.
Full disclosure: The seminar wasn’t totally full, so I may have pulled another basket of bread off an empty table.
It all culminated with the opportunity to use that fancy straw thingy to blend our own meritage. To do that, we’d fill up the pipette for every 10% of wine we wanted in our blend, mixing it all together in another glass. Mine ended up with 10% Cab Sauvignon, 50% Merlot, 20% Petit Verdot (So fruity! This was my clear fav) and 20% Malbec.
I wish I could tell you if it was any good, in official wine terms, but it didn’t taste bad! And it was a lot of fun to make. I don’t know if I’d go out of my way to pay $50 to do wine blending again, but I’m glad I did it! Next time, maybe the Cheese Course or Pasta Making seminar? That’s more my speed.
Once 5:30 p.m. hit, some people were still sipping their meritage blends, but all the bread baskets were empty and we weren’t wasting any food time, so we headed out to the causeway.
Read my review of the rest of our Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic night out on the causeway and make plans to attend next year, you won’t be disappointed.
About the author: Lauren Garcia, a 10-year local news veteran-turned-freelance writer, is an Orlando native and lover of all things Disney, where you can usually find her with her toddler.