The Beaujalois and Beyond Wine Festival was an interesting mix of dressy, casual, and weird. The place was seriously bumping by the time I had made it inside. As soon as I walked in, my eyes were immediately drawn to the rosé table—mostly by the brightly-lit Eiffel Tower replica, adorned with a swathe of balloons. Everything was decked out in a sort of French theme that I couldn’t quite discern from the musketeer costumes and the 10-feet-tall circus-tented stilt man traipsing around like it was totally normal to be that colorful and tall. I believe the eclectic mix of Texas and France was summed up by the chant of a particularly persistent musketeer: “Y’all for wine, and wine for y’all!”
Even though Texas wine doesn’t have quite as large a list of exceptional wineries as its west coast competitor, the ones that showed up last night were pretty awesome. One had a red wine that I couldn’t get enough of; it was light and dry. The French wines definitely put up a fight, too. One red wine from Rhone Valley was much fruitier and smoother than other ones I had tried that night. It was nice to talk about and sample such a wide variety of wines.
Among several food tables was La Madeleine, which had a tasty pâté puff thing, and Scardello, which brought a range of nuts and cheeses to enjoy. Henry’s Homemade Ice Cream had brought a couple interesting flavors like apple pie with them, but I went with my gut and got a scoop of mint chocolate instead. (Spoiler: It was good).
After a few rounds of sipping and munching, I snuck a peek at the VIP section while nobody was looking and took note of the cool little champagne bar, as well as the caricature station, which is exactly what it sounds like.
Even Miss Texas 2013, Ivana Hall, made an appearance, joining others on stage to declare a winner for the various silent auction entries going on that evening.
In the end, the night was enjoyable and I left grateful to be invited to such a delightfully oddball experience.
Jake Austin Medina is a D Magazine intern and a journalism major at the University of North Texas.