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Ottawa Wine & Food Show 2008

November 09, 2008 @ 10:51 By: gordon Category: Out and about

I went to the Ottawa Wine & Food Show at Lansdowne Park with some friends Friday evening. The last time I went was several years ago when the show was still at the Congress Centre. We bought tickets for the Tasting Alley, which ran for the first two hours of the show. It consisted of about forty different wines that probably averaged about $25/bottle. Unlike the main show, unlimited tasting tickets for these wines were included in the admission price, as was a free coat check. We had some very good wines and a couple of we dumped after one taste.

At the end of the two hours, we made our way into the main show via the VIP entrance, bypassing the line-ups.  That alone was worth the extra cost of the Tasting Alley.

The main show was absolutely packed and I have to admit that I didn’t like this venue as much as when it was at the Congress Centre.  One major flaw with the VIP Entrance is that there wasn’t a coupon booth where we entered, meaning we had to wander around the show for quite some time until we came across one of the booths.  Also, I didn’t think the selection was as good as it was the last time I went to the show.  I didn’t see any booths offering port or madeira, for example.

Still, I had a fun time and we stayed until the show closed at 9pm, at which point we made our way to the Barley Mow for some post-show food.  After sobering up there for a couple of hours (yes, sobering up at a pub — well, some of us), we headed our various ways.

Would I go again?  Probably.  I thought the Tasting Alley was an excellent value for the money and would happily try it again.  One thing thing they could add to it would be to provide little tasting notebooks so you could rate them as you went along.

2 Responses to “Ottawa Wine & Food Show 2008”


  1. Zhu says:

    I was considering going but found it a bit expensive, especially for a couple… and I barely drink (I guess that’s the main reason).

    I’m surprised it closes that early thought!

  2. gordon says:

    Yeah, if you barely drink then the show is probably not good value for you, even with the handful of food vendors there. 🙂

    Personally, I found I was ready to leave by 9pm and so were some of the people I was with.



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