The New Mexico Wine Competition options leisure and eating in ABQ, Las Cruces »Albuquerque Journal

(Illustration by Cathryn Cunningham / Albuquerque Journal)

The popular Albuquerque and Las Cruces wine festivals return on Memorial Day weekend with minor name changes that better represent the state’s wineries overall.

The festivals that were once known as the Albuquerque Wine Festival and Las Cruces Wine Festival are now the New Mexico Wine Festival in Albuquerque and the New Mexico Wine Festival in Las Cruces.

“We are trying to show, from the consumer’s point of view, that we are the industry that has the largest wine festival commemoration weekend in two locations with 24,000-25,000 attendees, and people see that this is a nationwide organization,” said Chris Goblet , Executive Director of New Mexico Wine. “We wanted people, especially out-of-towers, to not believe at New Mexico Wine Fest that Albuquerque is just Albuquerque wineries and Las Cruces is just Las Cruces wineries. We want that they know they cover the entire state and that it’s just one big entity, one membership, all of which make great wines and travel across the state to show them off. “

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The Albuquerque event will feature more than 20 wineries from across the state.

“We want to remind people that there are special prices for bottles and boxes of wine,” said Dean Strober of Blue River Productions, who is organizing the event. “Many of these wineries don’t have tasting rooms. They don’t have a distribution agreement. The only place some of these wines can be found is at the festivals. … It’s a really unique opportunity not only to get great offers on bottles and boxes, but above all to meet the winemakers. They will have really intimate conversations about what is the right wine for you. How do you enjoy your wine And how do you make the most educated decision about which wines to buy and take home with you? And I think that’s so much the core of our wine festivals that the people who pour the wines are the people who make the wines. “

Also part of the event are artisans and artisanal food manufacturers selling maple syrup, honey, crepes, horseradish, salsas, cheese, chocolates, baked goods, and more. There are also painting classes by Kelly Jo Designs By Wine and wine and cheese seminars in collaboration with La Montañita Co-op. Painting classes fill up quickly and attendees can reserve their spots for $ 5 on the Wine Festival website, which also shows which guests will be painting during the scheduled seminars. The wine and cheese seminars take place every day at 12:30 p.m. and cost $ 10.

There will also be seven bands with live entertainment every day. These include Baracutanga, Sol de la Noche, Chris Dracup and Funk of the West, Shark Suit and Fantuzzi.

(Illustration by Cathryn Cunningham / Albuquerque Journal)

The New Mexico Wine Fest in Las Cruces takes place on Memorial Weekend in the southern part of the state. It features about 18 New Mexico wineries, as well as artisanal grocery vendors, food trucks, and artisans and artisans selling their wares. Each day features live entertainment from a range of bands from a variety of genres, including funky jazz, country, reggae, and Latin. Painting courses are offered by I Painted That. Lessons take place according to availability. Participants can make flower wreaths in do-it-yourself courses or paint their own wooden signs. Wine festival guests can also learn a new dance with the help of the Sol Dance Company.

“You can learn how to make salsa, you can learn how to make meringue, you can learn how to do bachata and swing,” said Chelsea Canon, Las Cruces event coordinator and assistant director of New Mexico Wine. “… You will do one dance class every hour. The dance classes last around 25 to 30 minutes. You can just walk in and start taking a lesson. “

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