2024 Dates Announced for November 21-23

Thousands gathered at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids last month for a global culinary celebration during the 16th Annual Grand Rapids International Wine, Beer & Food Festival. Organizers noted the participation of more than 20 restaurants as well as food and beverage producers covering a world of cuisines and cultures.   “The diversity brought forward in the Festival this year across the food and beverage industries was the best ever,” said Dawn Baker, Festival Manager. “We have worked diligently over the years to build relationships that would bring a more global palate from around the world, as well as from our local community, and to shine a spotlight on these rich cultures.”   Throughout the three-day Festival, attendees savored an array of distinctive fare with Middle Eastern, Spanish, Mexican, Latin American, Jamaican, Caribbean, Dominican, Thai, Korean, Filipino, European and various American influences, collectively offering a progressive night in the city. From the food entrepreneurs featured in the Meijer Marketplace and on the Meijer Food Stage to the Small Plate and Pairing restaurants, the weekend satisfied even the hungriest of appetites while providing an opportunity for attendees to meet with people behind the products.   In addition to the worldwide menu offerings, the Festival also welcomed a group of esteemed leaders from the beverage world including Ray Isle, author of The World in a Wine Glass and longtime executive wine editor for Food & Wine; Vincent Morrow, one of four Black Master Sommeliers in the world, who also serves as Co-Chairperson of the Diversity Committee of the Court of Master Sommeliers and Board of Master Sommeliers at Wine Chips; Jonathan Pullis, Board of Master Sommeliers at Wine Chips, Wine Director at Madame Ushi in Aspen, CEO of Chef’s Club—a collaboration with Food & Wine magazine; Lazar Favors, Serial Entrepreneur and Chief Executive Officer of Black Spirits Legacy / Michigan Black Spirits; and Nicole Roché Triplett, the first Black female winemaker in Michigan and founder of the Roché Collection.   “The caliber of beverage professionals that we hosted this year was truly impressive,” noted Baker. “Our friends at Wine Chips – sponsors of The Vineyard area in the Steelcase Ballroom – went above and beyond in bringing in their team of sommeliers and wine media which helped to elevate the Festival to new heights. We can’t wait to see what they’re able to deliver in 2024 and beyond.”   The dates for next year’s Festival have been announced as November 21-23, with Thursday once again being a VIP Preview Night experience.   Since its inception in 2008, this Festival – named by Forbes.com in 2019 as one of a dozen “Fall Wine Festivals In North America You Don’t Want to Miss” and 8 Best Fall Festivals in Michigan by BestThingsMI.com – has grown into the largest and most popular of its kind in the Midwest. Admission tickets, pairing reservations, tasting sessions and other details will be posted in early fall at GRWineFestival.com.