The Adirondack Wine & Food Festival Showcases New York Flavors
July 26, 2023
Last month I crossed another New York food festival off my bucket list. This time my food adventures brought me to Lake George for the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival. The two-day festival is filled with wine, beer, spirits, and food samples from makers across the state.
Thank you to the folks at the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival for inviting me and a friend to enjoy the event in Lake George.
About the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival
Located in Charles R. Wood Park in Lake George, the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival occurs every year on the last weekend of June. The park provides the most scenic background for the event, just as it has for Ice Castles the past couple years.
The festival started in 2017 as a means to introduce visitors to local food and drink vendors. With admission, guests are able to try samples from over one hundred different vendors. That gives them the opportunity to try many new things without having to travel or pay individually for each item.
The purpose of the festival is to support local and encourage guests to purchase full-size items from the booths. And the best part? There is a large pick-up/drop-off tent located in the center of the festival. So you don’t have to worry about carrying around heavy wine bottles and perishable food all day. Just drop off your purchases as you make them and pick them all up on your way out.
Guests are recommended to buy tickets in advance. The tickets are available for either Saturday, Sunday, or the full weekend. With admission, guests receive a commemorative wine glass and entrance to the festival grounds. A VIP ticket option is available
Children under 15 are invited to attend the festival with their parents/guardians for FREE. There is also a designated driver ticket available for $20, and an underage option for guests between the ages of 15 and 21.
Tickets are not needed to visit the food trucks alongside the park, or the craft vendors in the village.
What makes the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival unique?
It’s not surprising to learn that the festival is filled with booths serving samples of their food and drinks. What is surprising are the events and amenities that the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival has.
Let’s start with the cabanas. Folks with VIP tickets to the festival have access to a special tent area with tables, chairs, and live music. For an extra fee, guests can also rent a private cabana tent for the day. The tents offer them a place to get out of the sun – or rain – and have some time to relax between samples.
In addition to the cabanas, there are large, beautiful hammocks at the center of the park. I couldn’t resist taking a break in one and getting a photo.
You may not expect to see some strolling entertainment at a food and wine festival, but there is! Performers strutted among the festival grounds in gorgeous costumes and stilts. Plus there were acrobatic performances scattered throughout the weekend.
Food Demonstrations & Competitions
By far the best – and my favorite – part of the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival is the outdoor demo kitchen. Fully equipped with two kitchen set-ups underneath a large tent, chefs and novices alike showcase their culinary skills all weekend long.
Be sure to check the schedule because Saturday and Sunday are both filled with events, alternating between recipe demonstrations and culinary cook-offs. Local chefs, bartenders, and influencers took the stage as they prepared their dishes and drinks. As a self-proclaimed foodie obsessed with watching The Food Network, I adored this part of the festival.
Food & Drink Highlights
With dozens of New York vendors sampling their products, you are bound to find many delicious things throughout the festival. Since I am only one person – and a responsible driver – I sampled responsibly. That meant I wasn’t able to try everything at the festival in just one day. I focused more on vendors and products that I hadn’t tried before (with one exception). So here are a few of my favorites that stood out:
Of course the star of the festival is Adirondack Winery. With a booth larger than most others, they were still consistently crowded every time I visited. By far my favorite of their wines is one of the most unique – Lavender. They also served samples of it as a slushie mixed with lemonade. You can be sure I bought a bottle to replicate it at home.
Do Good Spirits
Located in Roscoe, NY, I had visited Do Good on a previous trip to the Catskills. And I loved everything about it. So I was thrilled to find their craft spirits at the very first booth I visited. When I tell you that their bourbon cream is some of the best I’ve ever had, I’ve never been more serious. And while I made a point to try new things at the festival, I had to make an exception for this booth.
Lake George Olive Oil Company
When I’m at a food festival and I see a booth with olive oil and balsamic vinegar samples, I know where I’m heading next. And while many of them feature the same delicious garlic oils and fruity vinegars, Lake George Olive Oil stands out from the crowd. Every one of their oils was incredible, featuring flavors like roasted almond and pineapple white balsamic. Not surprisingly, I found myself going home with both a bottle of the herbs de Provence oil and a smoky sea salt rub. If you’re in Lake George, definitely check them out!
Hawaiian Shave Ice
When I first saw the brick-and-mortar location in the village, I was very excited. So when they were at the festival, I had to try some! While not quite as delectable as the Hawaiian shave ice I had in Oahu earlier this year, this one definitely hit the spot on a particularly hot day.
Mean Max Brew Works
Coincidentally, I had just sampled Mean Max beer for the first time shortly before the festival. Knowing my passion for craft beer, a friend had brought some home to me from her trip to Lake George. I loved the chocolate peanut butter she had gifted me. So I was happy to be able to try more at the festival!
Old Tavern Farm
Hands down, Old Tavern Farm wins the competition for best and most unique stand at the festival. Why? Because instead of a typical tent or food truck, the winery set up inside a horse trailer. Amazing. And knowing that their business started as a horse farm brings the whole thing full circle. The trailer even has bar seating on the back of it. As for the wine, it is on the drier side. I was hesitant because I typically favor sweet wines, but their Farm Fresh Rosé was delightful! A little bubbly, a little sweet, a lot perfect for a hot summer day.
Tres Bon Macarons
Creatively flavored macarons with the perfect crunchy exterior and soft insides. Need I say more?
Adirondack Wine & Food Festival 2024
Mark your calendars now – the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival is returning to Lake George on June 29 & 30, 2024.