Wine seminars may be best bargains at South Beach food fest

Guests try new varietals at Wine Spectator's Best of the Best event in 2017.
Guests try new varietals at Wine Spectator's Best of the Best event in 2017.

By now, most of the events are sold out. But you can still take advantage of some of the best bargains at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival: the wine seminars.

With so many flashy celebrity chefs and delectable food choices, we often forget about the wine part of the festival, which runs Wednesday through Sunday and brings joy to hearts and palates throughout South Florida. But look at the name: Wine comes first. And some of the wine events are the best bargains, with tickets running between $85 to $125.

Americans also drink a lot of wine — which means the big Miami audience is quite the lure for the industry, according to Mel Dick, Wine Division president/senior VP at Southern Glazer Wine & Spirits, which hosts the festival. Which means you have a shot at tasting wines you may not have tried before.

“America today is the largest wine consuming country in the world,” he says. “Everybody making wine around the world wants to be in America. I’m constantly asked to speak to groups around the world on how to do more business in America. … We’re fortunate to be so desirable. The winemakers want to be represented, so many come to the South Beach festival.”

Lanyard Wine Glasses at Fontainebleau Miami Beach await patrons at Wine Spectator's Best of the Best, which is sold out for 2018. SETH BROWARNIK

Most events are sold out, but there are a few intriguing events still open. Here are a few of them:

Domaines Ott

11 a.m.-noon Saturday, Eden Roc Hotel - Promenade; $85

Did someone say “prestigious wines?” Domaines Ott is owned by Champagne Louis Roederer. What more do you need to know?

Enroute Winemaker for a Day: Blending Seminar

Noon-1 p.m. Saturday, Eden Roc Hotel - Pompeii; $125

Create your own blend under the supervision of winemaker Andrew Delos.

Climbing Ever Higher with Terrazas de los Andes

3-4 p.m. Saturday, Eden Roc Hotel – Promenade; $85

Want to learn more about South American wines? Sample varietals from the Andes.

Vias Treasures: A Journey Through the Rarest Italian Grape Varieties

11 a.m. – noon Sunday, Eden Roc Hotel – Promenade; $85

Try something you almost certainly have never tried before with Vias Imports.

Chateau St. Jean presents Cinq Cépages Deconstructed: How To Craft a Number One Wine

Noon-1 p.m. Sunday, Eden Roc Hotel - Pompeii; $85

Explore the 2013 Cinq Cepages with winemaker Margo Van Staaveren.