Given the setting – the stunning column-ringed, stained glass-topped rotunda of the historic Cleveland Trust building – it wouldn’t take much to make Grapes Under Glass
a matchless wine-tasting event. But co-sponsors, Heinen’s and The Metropolitan at the 9, have partnered up to make the weekend-long event unforgettable.
“This is an unparalleled wine event at this beautiful venue we have downtown,” says Ed Thompkins, Director of Wine and Beer Events for Heinen’s. “Now, with The 9 as a partner, the event can be spread across all three floors of the Rotunda.”
Heinen's Downtown (2017 E 9th St.) and The 9 will serve as host to multiple wine tastings, educational seminars, and a Sunday brunch that take place from Friday April 28 through Sunday April 30.
The weekend kicks off with the Napa Blue Chip Cabernet Sauvignon tasting, an intimate, small-scale occasion that will take place on the third floor of the Rotunda. The price is $125 per person and includes a commemorative Schott Zwiesel wine glass and samples of some of the finest Napa cabs going. This event is limited to 100 guests.
“It’s always fun to do Napa, but with the string of great vintages that they have had since the 2012s and continued to the 2016s, it’s really an optimal time to dive in,” notes Thompkins. “There will be 20 different wineries, with a lot of winemakers or owner in attendance. Each will be pouring four wines, one of which will be either a barrel sample or an unreleased vintage so you can get a sneak peak of something.”
During the day on Saturday there will be a handful of seminars that dig deeper into a nice selection of wines, wineries, regions and styles.
Saturday night is the main event, which will be spread across all three levels of the Rotunda. In addition to the dozens of wineries offering samples of current, rare and unreleased wines, there will be plenty of food prepared by chefs from Heinen’s and The 9.
“The food will be off the hook; in fact, I’d say that this is as much a foodie event as it is a wine tasting,” says Thompkins. “Sometimes, at large scale wine events the food is arbitrary and is there just to fill you up. But Heinen’s and the guys from The 9 took a lot of care in planning the menu to make sure that these are incredibly wine friendly foods.”
In addition to passed hors d'oeuvres, a large buffet and carving stations, many wineries will be paired with food stations to offer specific food and wine pairings. For example, J Vineyards Brut will be paired with scallops and Meyer lemon foam, and Paul Hobbs Reserve Cabernet will be poured alongside grilled tri-tip.
“That way you get that instantaneous moment of understanding on why certain wines pair with certain foods,” explains Thompkins.
Sunday Bubbles Brunch at Adgea will pair a trio of sparklers – blanc de blanc, brut and brut rose – with heavy brunch items.
For more information or to purchase tickets to individual events or a package that combines more than one, check out this website