VAIL - The 23rd annual Taste of Vail wraps up today with a number of seminars and the signature Grand Tasting and Auction tonight at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort & Spa. The day starts off with an "Exploration of Olive Oil" with Giuliana Imports. Steve Lewis, founder of Giuliana Imports, will present this new seminar where participants will explore six top regions of Italy, France, Spain and Croatia by sampling the unique personalities of olive oil which vary vastly in color and aroma. Each area generates significantly different olive oils with great stories and traditions. The seminar takes place from 9:30 to 11 a.m. at the Four Season Resort Vail and is $50 or included in the festival pass.The Washington State seminar takes place from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and explores the regions that have made this state famous for merlot, syrah and riesling. Join an esteemed panel of winemakers as they explore the history, the territory and the personality of the grape varietals that grow the best in this relatively new region.Another new seminar for the 2013 event is "Riesling: the Forgotten Noble Varietal" with Andreas Wickoff, Austrian master of wine . Riesling is often stereotyped as an inexpensive, low-quality sweet beverage while, but historically riesling has been defined as one of the noble varietals. The riesling grape can produce wines of stunning complexity and comes in a mind-boggling number of styles. In a food pairing context, it is the most versatile varietal. Learn why some of the finest examples come from France, Austria and Germany. "Riesling: the Forgotten Noble Varietal" takes place from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at Matsuhisa Vail and is $55 or included in the festival pass. During the new Oregon seminar, a panel of leading winemakers from Oregon will discuss the character and vision for each region. Wine Spectator recently proclaimed Oregon's pinot noir is the "best in the nation," stating that the only competition in sight comes from France's celebrated Cote d'Or. Oregon's unique combination of geography, climate, soil and creative winemaker personalities generates wines that are superbly expressive. Arguably, they are the most food-friendly domestic wines. Experience how this synergy of place, territory and philosophy produces world-class wines. The seminar takes place from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort and is $50 or included in the festival pass. The Grand Tasting and Silent Auction begin at 6 p.m. at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort & Spa. The culmination of the four-day food and wine festival, the Grand Tasting, is Taste of Vail's annual decadent wine and culinary spectacle. The event features all Taste of Vail wineries, restaurants, spirits and beer. Tickets to the Grand Tasting are $175.For more information about Taste of Vail tickets and events, visit www.tasteofvail.com.
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