Bay Area 
Wine Society
Upcoming Events

 2014 Romancing the Rhones: 
Grand Tasting & Shootout Challenge

  • Kensington Park Hotel

    450 Post Street, San Francisco, CA (edit map)

  • Located in the 3rd floor historic Elks Lodge 1925 ballroom
  • Early Bird Prices end Sun. Aug. 25th: start at $34.00/58.00 for two + other savings listed below

    Refund policy

Similar to our Cabernet Challenge in January, the Third Annual Romancing the Rhones,  cosponsored by the Bay Area Wine Society's PAIRINGS fundraising arm and Affairs of the Vine consists of five components:

  • a People's Choice blind tasting of the finalists of a previous judging conducted over the summer by experts: wine writers, winemakers, retailers, restaurateurs etc.
  • a VIP panel session at the public tasting of winemakers who specialize in Rhone style wines
  • a walk around Grand Tasting of over 20 wineries where guests can discuss Rhone releases with the vintners and winemakers while enjoying some nifty nibbles
  • a raffle and the sale of wines being poured  to support  Meals on Wheels which delivers healthy meals to homebound seniors 
  • following the presentation of the professional judges plus attendees best of tastings awards, a cash bar will be available after the tastings for those who want to linger.  And expect to be able to do some dancing
  • includes a membership in which offers discounted wines, tastings and tours

Following the awarding of the professional judges plus attendees best of tastings awards, a cash bar will be available for those who want to linger. 

Affairs of the Vine professional judging panel is expected to evaluate approximately 300 Rhone wines, most from California and Oregon but some from Washington, Texas, Michigan, Australia, and France.  The wines range from Syrah, Grenache, Petite Sirah and blends, to Viognier, Roussanne, Grenache Blanc, and Marsanne, plus Rosés of the red grapes.

A core group from the judging panel, a diverse assemblage of over 50 wine professionals, will rate the wines over the summer. Only 32 wines will be tasted by the experts per day in multiple flights, allowing the judges to be completely immersed, focused and fair to the wines. Palate fatigue is not a factor in these tastings. The wines are tasted completely blind without reference to appellation, vintage or price.  Each wine submitted to the Rhone Shootout will be tasted a minimum of twice. Top rated wines are then tasted by the total panel of judges at the Rhone Shootout Finals to be held on August 16 . 

The Rhone Shootout judges’ decisions are put to the test during the Rhone Shootout Challenge  at  Romancing the Rhones public tasting in the Kensington Park hotel. 

Following a VIP winemakers panel,  in a distinctly different format and atmosphere from other wine-tasting events, the attendees blind taste the wines and pit their palates against the pros. The wines are divided into two groupings, wrapped individually and identified by a random color. As with the expert judges, the male and female votes are tallied separately. Each participant is given 5 chips to vote for as many as 5 wines or as few as one, indicating their passion for each wine by the number of chips they drop in the “ballot box.”

The blind judging is followed by a walk around tasting allowing wine enthusiasts to discuss the wines entered in the competition with the vintners.
The day concludes with the announcement of Best of the Best Rhones chosen by both the experts and the participants in the public voting.  Visit the Affairs of the Vine page to view  the voting results from our inaugural event.


Regular price for Romancing the Rhones Shootout Taste-off + meet the vintners & sample their current releases   $69 Add to Cart
1/2 price Early Bird tickets/discount ends on Sunday, Aug. 25th: $34
 Add to Cart  $58 for two Add to Cart       View Cart 
Regular VIP ticket includes
 Winemakers panel + Rhones Shootout Taste-off + Meet the vintners & sample their current releases: $89 Add to Cart
1/2 price Early Bird VIP discount ticket $44 Add to Cart  Discount VIP tix for two $74  Add to Cart

QUESTIONS:  CALL  TOM  MERLE  707.337.3663

Website Builder