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7 Things to Know About Cornucopia, Whistler's Food and Wine Festival


A festival celebrating good food and drink in a world-class ski resort town? Sounds like a winning recipe to us.

Before the mountains open up for a season of skiing, the people of Whistler, British Columbia gather to sample delicious foods, to sip terrific wines, and to learn a thing or two from some of the best chefs, winemakers, and distillers around. Here’s what you should know about Cornucopia—arguably the greatest festival on earth!

Why Whistler?
Although a ski resort town might seem like an odd place for all this to happen, Whistler just so happens to host some of the best restaurants in the country: you’ll often see restaurants like Araxi, Bearfoot Bistro, the Rim Rock Café, and Alta Bistro popping up on “best of” lists. Besides, most winemakers, restaurateurs, and other guests are happy to make the two hour pilgrimage from Vancouver to escape city life for a few days.

18 Years of Cornucopia
This November, Cornucopia will celebrate its 18th year in Whistler. Throughout the festival’s life, some things have remained constant, while many others have evolved. One of the biggest changes took place in 2013: the festival expanded to an 11-day affair, taking place over two weekends. The expansion was a hit, and the extra-long format is here to stay.

The Inside Scoop
You can’t assemble people who love food and wine without giving out a few samples along the way. Cornucopia is as much about tasting as it is learning: you’ll get to try plenty of dishes and drinks, but you’ll also gather a lot of knowledge along the way. Workshops tackle topics like wines of different regions, distilling processes, cooking techniques, and more. There are debates and plenty of competitions along the way – in other words, this is not your standard conference!

Go Behind the Food (and Drink)
If you’ve ever wanted to grill a chef about how they came up with such a spectacular dish, or ask a vintner what makes their 2010 chardonnay so different from the 2011 vintage, this is your chance. Cornucopia events offer an interactive experience: you’ll want to soak up as much knowledge as possible, and come prepared with your most pressing questions!

Party On
Most of the daytime events involve sipping, sampling, and learning – but come evening, things get a little more lively. Events like House Party and the Crush Grand Gala Tasting are equal parts indulgence and entertainment.

But Nourish Yourself, Too
A relatively recent addition to the Cornucopia schedule is the Nourish series, meant to counterbalance some of the overindulgence that inevitably happens throughout the festival. The Nourish series includes everything from morning yoga and meditation sessions to all-organic lunches hosted by farm-to-table local restaurateurs. If you’re feeling extra open-minded, you can check out the raw cacao ceremony, presented alongside a yoga class.

Pick Your Poison
There are a lot of events to choose from, many of which run at the same time. You’ll need to spend a lot of time studying the schedule to strike your perfect balance. You can choose to attend just one or two events, or you can go all out and make your attendance a temporary full-time job. You can bundle tickets to earn savings of up to 25% to help you get the most bang for your buck.


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