Fall Food Festivals 2013: Hudson Valley Wine and Food Festival, Cauliflower Festival, and Garlic Festival

Three food fests take place in the Valley in 2013

It really shouldn’t be a surprise that the Hudson Valley is a foodie’s delight, not with celebrity chefs calling the area home, numerous four- and five-star restaurants, and the world-class Culinary Institute of America sitting smack-dab in the middle of it all.

We love our food — and we love our food festivals.

“There’s no doubt all these festivals are an economic boon to Ulster County, and the Hudson Valley as a whole,” says Rick Remsnyder, Ulster County’s Director of Tourism. “People come by and large for the food. It’s a huge draw.”

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In fact, in September alone, three unique events are being held in three different counties in the area. Read up on them below:

Hudson Valley Wine and Food Festival

It’s the 12th year for the Hudson Valley Wine and Food Festival, which started at Greig Farm in Red Hook before moving to the Dutchess County Fairgrounds in 2007 to accommodate its growth.

“It’s just a great day out for people who like the foodie and wine lifestyle,” says Jennifer Cristaldi, vendor coordinator for Grape Events Partners, which promotes the festival. “We’ve seen people come to the festival and then, the next year, bring their friends and leave the kids at home. We’ve even seen bachelorette parties spend the day here.”

More than 75 wineries, gourmet and food vendors, and market vendors are in attendance.

When: Sat., Sept. 7 & Sun., Sept. 8
Where: Dutchess County Fairgrounds, Rhinebeck
Hours: Sat. 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Tickets: $40 one-day tasting; $70 weekend tasting. Beer-tasting glass, food samples and food concessions are all separate.
What’s new: Cooking demonstrations by Chef Peter Kelly, who graduated from Marist College and owns several critically acclaimed restaurants in the Valley; a new gourmet food truck corral; a craft brew component.
Web site: www.hudsonvalleywinefest.com

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Cauliflower Festival

Hey, if Rosendale can have its Pickle Festival, Margaretville can have a Cauliflower Festival. And this unique event is marking its 10th anniversary this year.

“Cauliflower was a cash crop for many years in Delaware County,” explains Carol O’Beirne, executive director of the Central Catskills Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the Cauliflower Festival. “The last cauliflower farm stopped operating about 10 to 12 years ago, but it’s always been a part of our heritage.”

The festival will feature more than 50 vendors of an eclectic nature.

When: Sat., Sept. 28
Where: Village Pavilion, Rte. 28 and Bridge St., Margaretville
Hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Tickets: Free, with a nominal charge for some children’s events to defray costs
What’s new: Sheep and Wool Festival. At nearby Belleayre Mountain, check out the Ski Timber Festival, which is cross-promoted with the Cauliflower Fest
Web site: www.cauliflowerfestival.com

Hudson Valley Garlic Festival

Who knew?

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Well, apparently, Pat Reppert knew. A Saugerties resident, Reppert owned and operated an herb garden 25 years ago. To promote her business, she decided to have what was affectionately known as a little “garlic get-together” at her home on a quiet street near Cantine Field.

“After about three years, when cars starting parking up and down her street, her husband told her, ‘You have to do something to get this out of here and into a new place,’ ” said Beth Bechtold, the current president of the Kiwanis Club of Saugerties and publicity chair for the Garlic Festival. “She came to the Kiwanis Club and the rest is history. This will be our 22nd year of sponsoring and the 25th anniversary overall.”

How has it grown now? Put it this way: according to Remsnyder and confirmed by Bechtold, good weather means the Garlic Festival will pull in up to 40,000 people over the two days.

That’s a lot of cars.

When: Sat., Sept. 28 & Sun., Sept. 29
Where: Cantine Field, Saugerties
Hours: Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun. 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Tickets: $7 in advance, $10 at the gate
What’s new: An expansion of the area where guest lecturers speak and where chefs conduct their demonstrations. “That has become very, very popular,” Bechtold says, “so we really needed to expand there.”
Web site: www.hvgf.org


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