Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Munich held its 23 annual Forum Vini, or Wine Festival, this weekend, and not surprisingly the mood was quite festive around the MOC convention center. We had attended two such events per year while in Paris, and the concept is quite nice. For a small entry fee you get a glass and walk around trying wines from around the world. If you like them, you buy – and if not, you walk on. We certainly didn’t go home empty handed, but not without noticing some pretty distinct cultural differences from the experiences we had in Paris. For one, some of the booths were self-serve, like this extremely popular Rioja booth (pictured here) – where you could try more than 50 different Rioja wines. Second, the entry price was 17 euros versus 7 (and often free) in Paris. (I realize that these first two points could be related.) And finally to complete the picture, unlike its French counterpart, this wine fest was a touch of Octoberfest – so quite a few people there to get drunk. They were there to try, try, and try more wines. Needless to say, the scene became quite colorful near closing time.