This year's LA Wine Festival tapped into two popular trends: organic biodynamic wines, and blood-sucking vampires. Over two thousand attendees congregated around dozens of wine booths, stretching their arms and glasses out in the 80-degree heat, requesting wine refills at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood last Saturday and Sunday, June 5-6. Vampire Vineyards poured heavy reds, while local (and international) wineries poured their own vino samplings. Some California winemakers had fun with their blends. "You know when you drink a lot of syrah and grenache? Why not just drink syrache?" said Peter Work of the hand-tailored Ampelos syrache.
While the festival, sponsored by websites and restaurants such as dineLA, CitySipper, and Breadbar, was short on free foodstuff, food booths offered eats such as bacon-grilled cheese sandwiches from The Must, sushi from Tsunami, and a couple of food trucks of course. Working our way through perspiring crowds under the beating sun for four-plus hours, we found solace inside of a promotional Buick parked in the shade--it seemed worth filling out the one-page questionnaire. Scotch tastings and Absinthe educational classes were available for those who wanted a different kind of wine fest experience. So, maybe mixing whiskey, vodka, wine, and beer wasn't the best idea. Luckily we survived. More photos after the jump.