Watching movies under the stars sounds lovely, watching them in the beauty of vineyards with a glass of wine in hand and it’s downright poetic! That’s what awaits you if you head out to the Niagara Integrated Film Festival June 18-21.
The festival is entering it’s second year and recently held a media tour to give a hint of what attendees will experience. Let us tell you, you’re not going to want to miss out on this unique collaboration of wine & film. In fact, we’re giving away a pair of tickets to Posthumous, screening on Saturday June 20 at 9:30 pm at Southbrook Vineyards (581 Niagara Stone Rd). This includes a glass of wine during the film! All you have to do is follow us on twitter @avineromance and we’ll select a random winner on June 11th.
For now let’s get back to the media tour. We started out at Pillitteri where the menu consisted of Thyme and Butter Tossed Mushrooms en Croute with Goats Cheese and Crisps (Wine Pairing: Pinot Gris), Beef tenderloin with fingerling sea salt frites and saffron aioli (Wine Pairing: Cab Merlot) and Confit Duck “ Cornish Pasty” with Pickled Blue Cheese (Wine Pairing: Vidal Ice Wine).
Next up was Konzelmann Estates. The menu here was paired with their Pinot Noir and included Mini Chicken Caesar On Frico Basket Parmesan cheese basket filled with arugula, chicken and crispy bacon with garlic mayo, Smoked Salmon Blinis Savoury pancake with Smoked Salmon & Creme fraiche and Mascarpone & Strawberry Muffin Mini cornmeal muffin filled with Mascarpone cheese and strawberry wedge.
Finally we visited PondView where our palates were tempted by Brie Cheese (Wine Pairing: Harmony white),Grand Padano (Wine Pairing: BellaTerra Chardonnay) and Aged Cheddar and Capicola and Prosciutto(Wine Pairing: Choice of Harmony Red or Cabernet Merlot).
The postcards for the festival say ‘Uncork your love for cinema” and at each winery we watched two short films, all of which were by Canadian filmmakers. A really nice touch to pair great Canadian wine with great Canadian films!
As a vegan, I was disappointed that I couldn’t sample any of the food but this is my ‘beef’ (pun intended) with the area of wine pairings in general. Wine is typically paired with meat and cheese, which is fine for most folks but there certainly is a growing niche audience of people like myself who choose a vegan diet for a variety of reasons and who’d love to find out great pairings for the foods they eat. Some smart businessman or sommelier is going to corner that market–hey it may be myself and Alex!
Nevertheless, the Niagara Integrated Film Festival is a fantastic way to enjoy the outdoor movie experience surrounded by a truly beautiful landscape. It is the brainchild of Bill Marshall, founder of the Toronto International Film Festival, so you can be sure the films (and wines) selected meet high standards.
Remember to follow us on twitter (@avineromance) for your chance to win a pair of tickets!
Newfoundlander, Alex may have model looks (yes, he was a Harlequin cover model in another life!) but he is also a Certified Sommelier who lives, breathes, and of course, drinks wine. Alex is very passionate about wine and was the sole person in a class of over 200 to earn a perfect score on his Wine Specialist Exam in Napa, CA!
With her background as a comic performer and producer, Priya is a consummate and entertaining hostess. She’s produced and hosted events for groups of 100 to over 2000 people so she knows a thing or two about how to get things done and get them done right.
Together they aim to make wine fun, flirty and accessible regardless of your income bracket. Let us make your next wine tour or event truly memorable!