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Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Time to Pop A Cork


Wine-tasting even returns to Festival Plaza

A local wine-lover’s favorite time of year is almost here.

CORK – A Red River Revel Wine Event returns Saturday, April 1, from 2-5 p.m. at Shreveport’s Downtown Festival Plaza.

A $100 ticket will let you sample almost 100 wines from 23 vineyards. Each booth will offer a minimum of four different wines. There will be table seating; however, reserved table packages, which include 10 tickets, are $1,500.

“If Revel is an event where art is the primary focus, then CORK is an event where wine is the primary focus,” said Revel Executive Director Logan Lewis.

But since it’s never good to drink on an empty stomach, at least 10 restaurants will offer sample bites of food.

“They usually come in two- to four-ounce portions, so it’s more of a tasting,” Lewis said. “Although some people do like to use the opportunity to go ahead and eat and stave off a potential future hangover.”

CORK has aged well, like a fine wine, going into its 17th year. But this year, a concerted effort has been made to improve and refine the event’s collection of wines.

“We took a very close look at each and every wine we offer and tried to cater to a wide variety of wines,” Lewis said. “In the past, some of the distinctions have been a little broader – white, sparkling, red, Moscato. We’ve been trying to find a variety that can cater to just about anyone’s tastes.”

For the first time, CORK will feature wines from three New World countries: Argentina, Chile and South Africa. Think of these booths as a way to introduce you to a whole new world.

“There are always people who find (wines) they’ve never tried, or have been too afraid to try, that turn into some of their favorite beverages.”

And if you find something you like, you can go home with it. Through a partnership with Thrifty Liquor, you can buy bottles of every wine offered for tasting on site. That keeps you from paying for a wine you’ve never tried – and may not like once the cork is popped.

“Wine sometimes can be deceiving in price,” Lewis explained. “The label is as important as the price. There really is some great wine out there that is at an affordable price point. But people may not necessarily know the difference between wines that are $10 apart in price. This event offers them the opportunity to taste the difference without having to go and purchase the whole bottle.”

Education is a big part of learning the type of wine (or wines) for you. To that end, “At each booth, there will be a placard which talks about not only the region the wine comes from, but the type of wine and how it’s made – what that wine is all about,” Lewis said. “Also, its price point.”

As of this writing, CORK officials were reviewing what food restaurants are proposing to serve.

“We just want to make sure the offerings we have are equal to the event’s nature,” Lewis said. “That the quality is worth the $100 ticket price, and that restaurants understand the quantities they need to make sure they don’t run out.”

“People can expect to try a variety of different samples,” Lewis said. “It’s everything from charcuterie to duck nachos we’ve had in the past. We’ve had brisket.”

There will be some other new twists to this year’s CORK. Instead of one act providing music, there will be three. Edi Ki, DJ Faze, and Bond+ will all perform.

Isabelle De Joya Vea, recognized at last year’s Revel, will be CORK’s featured artist. That means you will have an opportunity to buy her jewelry.

You can also buy raffle tickets for $10 each, allowing you to win items in value from $150 to $600.

In addition, CORK’s presenting sponsor, Horseshoe Bossier City, will sell pre-made charcuterie boards. There will also be new Revel merchandise for sale.

To learn more about CORK and buy tickets, you may visit www.redriverrevel.com.


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