Held at the phenomenal National Wine Centre, Champagne Fest was a day of pure indulgence for champagne lovers from all over Adelaide. Starting at 11am, we were able to delve into the wonderful world of champagne with over forty different champagnes to choose from, as well as a range of stunning sparkling wines and proseccos. Fresh seafood and hand-designed picnic platters from Executive Chef, Steven Clark featured local produce and were available throughout the day. Brian Ruiz and Entertainment Adelaide provided live entertainment that had everybody dancing the day away.
Upon entry we were given our own champagne glass with $8 drink tickets to begin our champagne tasting adventure. The Hickinbotham Hall was decorated with rustic wooden stands of champagne, sparkling wine, and prosecco. An assortment of cheeses from Onkaparinga and Murray River, olives from Penelton Estate and gherkins from Spring Gully, and San José smallgoods were on display at the banquet table along with breads and crackers to create beautiful picnic platters. Wooden tables for groups were set up beneath the high ceilings which were decorated with luminous fairy lights. The space had been opened up so fresh air and sunshine rained upon the inside sitting area.
Outside we found a bright and beautiful day with chattering people enjoying the champagne, food, and sunshine. Wine barrels were set up with seats around the food displays, and lower tables sat beneath the sun where there was a view of the stage. Brian Ruiz and Entertainment Adelaide played an assortment of popular tracks from all decades, so everybody was able to enjoy the music. Overlooking the vineyards and botanical gardens was an open area where people could sit on the grass and soak in the sunshine while enjoying the view and live entertainment.
Masterclasses were available for VIP guests and was a must for those who really love champagne! The Grower Masterclass shone light on six different producers from various parts of Champagne, from Agrapart to Pierre Peters. The Better late, than never Masterclass took us through some of our favourite L.D Champagnes and compared them with some of their local counterparts. Both were brilliant experiences for people to learn more about where their favourite champagnes come from, and gain insight as to how they are made. Complimentary cava tastings were available between 12pm and 2pm, with flocks of people coming to the booth to try the Spanish wine!
Some of our favourite drinks from the day were the 2017 Bera ‘Moscato D’Asti’, the 2018 Spring Seed Wine Co. ‘Sweet Pea Moscato’, and the 2015 Sitella ‘Marie Christine Lugten.’ The Moscato D’Asti’ was a gorgeous prosecco with a sweet and sugary taste, and tropical aroma and flavours. It was not overly fizzy and very gentle on the palate. The Sweet Pea Moscato was a beautiful and sweet prosecco with a delicate pink colour and aromatic qualities. The drink reminded me of spring and the smell of sweet peas. The Marie Christine Lugten was a refreshing sparkling wine with hints of green apple and a slightly sweet touch. The summery drink is perfect for keeping cool by the pool when the hot weather hits.
We could not have asked for a more beautiful day to celebrate this years Champagne Fest, and it was evident by the happy chatter and flowing drinks that everybody felt the same! We are excited to see what Champagne Fest has in store for us next year. Until then, we will have to buy a couple of bottles of our favourite drinks and relive the moment in our own back gardens!
Words by Elisabeth Marie