The Best Wine Festivals for 2024


April 20, 2024

Ellie Lowenstein

The lively hum of a celebration, the chime of glasses being raised, the warm glow of sun-kissed landscapes… it’s no surprise that vineyards are known for drawing a crowd. The chance to practice the art of sommeliership for an afternoon, swirling a flight of varietals in your glass and pairing them with light bites with your closest friends and family is a core memory in itself. But what if you could take it a step further? Enter the world of wine festivals — where you get to explore even deeper and celebrate a bit more.

Wine festivals are not just events; they are immersive journeys into the heart and soul of a place — and the perfect excuse for a getaway, in our opinion. Whether you’re flying solo and looking to meet new people with like-minded tastes (literally), or you’re venturing with a group to celebrate a milestone, you can’t go wrong. As much of the world emerges from winter and embraces the outdoors, we’ve curated a list of the finest wine festivals from around the globe, each representing the essence of its month. Whether you’re a seasoned connoisseur, a curious wine explorer, or even someone who prefers a non-alcoholic sip, these gatherings offer a new adventure for everyone. 

Images courtesy of Passport to Dry Creek Valley.

Passport to Dry Creek Valley

Northern Sonoma County, California. April 26-28, 2024

In the heart of northern California lies a secret paradise for wine enthusiasts who want to discover their next favorite vintage. Just 70 miles north of the Golden Gate Bridge, yet completely tucked away amidst rolling hills and lush vineyards, Dry Creek Valley is a 9,000-acre hidden gem boasting over 60 wineries within a compact 16×2 mile radius. For those seeking a taste of history and quiet luxury, the annual Passport to Dry Creek Valley event — scheduled from April 26 to April 28, 2024 — offers an unparalleled opportunity to explore the region with no reservations required, a rarity in today’s world. Each year during this special weekend, the valley bursts into life, welcoming eager connoisseurs to California’s longest-running wine event. Yet, it’s more than just a gathering to raise a glass; it’s a journey into over 140 years of grape growing and winemaking history in a region that has one of the densest concentrations of varietals in the world. With over 30 multigenerational family-owned wineries participating, guests are invited to embark on private vineyard tours, barrel tastings, and savor sips of limited-production library wines. For those seeking a deeper connection to the land, the event offers an intimate glimpse into the winemaking process — a chance to glean insights from experts and cultivate a profound appreciation for the craftsmanship behind each bottle. Non-drinker tickets are also available for those seeking an alcohol-free experience.

London Wine Fair

London, United Kingdom, May 20-22, 2024

Wine enthusiasts and top industry professionals gather each year at this annual wine fair at Olympia London. As the UK’s largest and most beloved wine event, the 42nd annual London Wine Fair will bring together over 14,000 wineries from more than 35 countries and 500 exhibitors, including wine producers, importers, and distributors. This three-day event offers seminars and masterclasses led by industry experts, tasting areas, opportunities to meet winemakers from different regions worldwide, awards and competitions, and more. You might want to skip this event if you’re not a true enthusiast; however, if you’re a wine buyer, importer, sommelier, restaurateur, or journalist, this is a great place to hear from the top voices in the wine industry. 

Food & Wine Classic

Aspen, Colorado. June 14-16.

The Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, taking place for over 40 years, transports participants into a world of epicurean indulgence. The festival gathers world-renowned culinary leaders and brings together a group of true food and wine enthusiasts to experience three days of immersive culinary exploration. The Food & Wine Festival offers over 40 cooking demonstrations from highly acclaimed chefs and additional seminars and panel discussions, which you can sign up for to learn and hear directly from the experts. Over 70 celebrity chefs and beverage experts from around the country come together to participate in this festival. Additionally, you will likely spot at least a handful of celebrities taking part in the festivities themselves, such as Martha Stewart, who attends the event regularly. The centerpiece and clear show-stopper of the weekend is the Grand Tasting Pavilion, where over 150 brands of wine, food, spirits, and beer offer a delicious taste of their products. 

Image courtesy of Food and Wine.
Photography by Galdones Photography for FOOD & WINE.

Douro & Porto Wine Festival

Porto, Portugal. July 5-6.

The Douro Wine Region of Northern Portugal, nestled east of Porto, is renowned for its production of Port and dry red wines. The Douro River winding through the Marão and Montemuro mountains creates a stunning landscape and fosters a microclimate ideal for cultivating distinct grape varieties exclusive to this region, thanks to its unique geography. An ideal time to visit is during the Douro and Porto Wine Festival, a gathering of top winemakers and chefs from the region, along with musical talents from around the globe. The 2024 festival lineup includes renowned artists like Vance Joy and Corinne Bailey Rae, who sings ‘Put Your Records On.’ Partnering with a local travel agency, the festival even provides personalized suggestions for transportation and lodging, simplifying your travel planning.  This festival has it all: breathtaking scenery, exceptional wines, local cuisine, and live music amidst the summer in Portugal — it’s an experience not to be missed.

Wine Town Stellenbosch

Stellenbosch, South Africa. July 30-August 4.

Wine Town Stellenbosch attracts national and international travelers to partake in their annual celebration of local grapes, wine, cuisine, and cultural heritage. Twenty-five miles east of Cape Town, Stellenbosch stands as one of the most famous wine-producing regions in the world, known for its unique Bordeaux Blend wines, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Chenin Blanc. It is notably the birthplace of Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsaut. This locale has a rich history in cultivation and production, evident even in the mineral qualities discernible in the taste of its wines crafted from grapes grown at the base of its characteristic granite mountains, in soil three times as old as the soil found in Napa Valley. This event encompasses a diverse selection of activities, including live music performances, farm walks, wine-paired meals, and guided tastings, all centered around the region’s exceptional wines.

Photos courtesy of Wine Town Stellenbosch.

Stuttgart Wine Festival

Stuttgart, Germany. August 28-September 8.

Germany’s largest wine festival takes place in Stuttgart, the capital of the country’s most prominent wine-producing region, where the city center is adorned with decorated arbors and lined with traditional German half-timbered framed houses that resemble pages from a storybook. Against this enchanting backdrop, wine aficionados can sample traditional Swabian delicacies perfectly paired with local wines like Trollinger, Pinot Noir, and Riesling. With over 500 varieties of wine available at the festival, the event showcases the region’s rich history – it was first developed for viticulture by the Romans in the 2nd century AD and had evolved into a significant industry in the area by the Middle Ages. Today, winemakers, known for their youthful and innovative approach, continue the region’s longstanding winemaking tradition while integrating modern techniques. This vibrant spirit is celebrated at Stuttgart’s Wine Festival, an energetic event featuring lively competitions, live music, and family-friendly activities such as grape stomping. 

NYC Wine & Food Festival 

New York, New York. October 17-20.

New York City’s Wine & Food Festival (NYCWFF), presented by Food Network, is making its home in Brooklyn for the first time this year. It stands as New York City’s premier culinary event, boasting over 80 events, 500 chefs, and over 47,000 attendees over the course of four days — a true destination for lovers of food, wine, and a good time. Attendees can enjoy walk-around tastings, savor intimate dinners crafted by world-renowned chefs, attend pier parties hosted by well-known DJs, and indulge in the ultimate food and wine experience at the grand tasting. From brunches and lunches to cooking classes and cocktails, NYCWFF offers something for every palate and preference. Beyond culinary experiences, NYCWFF donates 100% of its proceeds to support God’s Love We Deliver, a unique organization that provides life-sustaining meals and nutrition counseling for New Yorkers living with severe illness. 

Image courtesy of Timeout.

Karakterre Natural Wine Festival

New York, New York. November 5.

Wherever you stand on natural wine, there is no denying its surge in popularity in recent years. In contrast to traditional winemaking, defined by technical intervention, natural winemakers use sustainable farming techniques and focus on minimal intervention during the winemaking process, meaning they do not filter or clarify the wine and use additives such as sulfites sparingly. To learn more about natural wines and industry leaders, attend Karakterre, the premier showcase of organic, biodynamic, and natural wines from central and eastern Europe. Bringing together over 70 organic and biodynamic growers in the heart of Manhattan, you can hear from the winemakers themselves about cultural context, environmental impact, and terroir expression, which influence the flavors and notes reflected in each glass. As a bonus, many feel better after drinking natural wine because it has a lower sulfite content than your regular glass. While this isn’t scientifically proven, we would like to abide by this logic. So, taste all of the natural wine at Karakterre without worrying about next-day repercussions. Maybe you’ll discover your next go-to bottle.

Photo courtesy of Cititour.

Palm Beach Food & Wine Fest  

Palm Beach, Florida. December 12-15.

The Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival returns for its 17th year in partnership with Wine Spectator, promising another year of top culinary talent and a selection of premier wines. Affectionately dubbed “where foodies go for the winter,” this four-day event offers a diverse range of experiences. Guests can indulge in delicious poolside bites, intimate private meals with renowned chefs, savor expertly curated wine pairings by master sommeliers, and enjoy festive parties at esteemed venues like The Breakers, Savor at Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa, and The Boca Raton. This celebration also supports a meaningful cause, donating a portion of its proceeds to Els for Autism, an organization dedicated to providing lifelong support for individuals with autism and their caregivers through a range of services and collaborative partnerships. Whether you’re a seasoned Palm Beach regular or seeking a getaway, this festival provides the perfect opportunity to experience the diverse selection of gastronomic creations from celebrated chefs and wine experts amidst the nourishing Florida sun. 

Photos courtesy of PB Food and Wine Fest.

Boston Wine and Food Festival 

Boston, Massachusetts. January 2025 (Exact dates TBD).

The Boston Wine and Food Festival, founded in 1990 by Daniel Bruce, one of the region’s most recognized and accomplished chefs, stands as the longest-running wine festival in the U.S. Setting it apart from others on this list is its distinctive format: A 10-week series of intimate special events and sit-down dinners held from January to March, in contrast to the typical 2-5 day packed schedules of many culinary events. This elongated time frame allows for a more leisurely and immersive experience, drawing wine and food enthusiasts back year after year. Chef Bruce, formerly the executive chef at Meritage, the 5-star Boston Harbor Hotel restaurant, is an industry legend, winning the James Beard Award twice and earning the title of Vice Conseiller Culinaire, Bailliage de Boston from La Chaine des Rotisseurs. His extensive network of winemakers worldwide enriches the festival, featuring dinners hosted by renowned vintners alongside seminars, receptions, and celebrations. These dinners, structured uniquely, spotlight the wines, with culinary dishes meticulously crafted to complement each selection — making it the perfect destination for food and wine enthusiasts seeking a more relaxed experience and opportunity to savor the finest wines paired with gourmet dishes and enjoy Boston’s winter charm. 

Marlborough Wine Festival

Marlborough, New Zealand. February 8, 2025.

More than just a festival, the Marlborough Wine Festival is an immersive celebration that encapsulates all there is to love about Marlborough – from its world-class wines to its warm and welcoming people, its delicious cuisine, and its stunning landscapes. This annual event marks the beginning of the harvest season, attracting food and wine lovers worldwide. Though relatively new compared to other winemaking regions worldwide, Marlborough owes its success and acclaim to its passionate and dedicated winemakers, who have transformed it into a thriving industry and earned global recognition as a top wine-producing region. Winemakers offer tastings of the region’s finest wines, chefs serve delicious bites, and expert-led seminars explore Marlborough’s viticulture. Don’t miss Marlborough’s iconic Sauvignon Blanc – the wine that put the area on the map. This vibrant and relaxed event also includes live music and even helicopter rides for the adventurous.

Photos courtesy of Marlborough Wine Festival.

Charleston Wine + Food Festival

Charleston, South Carolina. March 2025 (Exact Dates TBD).

Established in 2005 by visionary community leaders, The Charleston Wine + Food Festival (CHSFW) is a non-profit organization dedicated to celebrating, supporting, and promoting vibrant Charleston’s food scene. It also aims to proactively contribute to its long-term growth, with a focus on fostering sustainability, preserving culture, and empowering individuals in the culinary, beverage, and hospitality community. The five-day wine festival offers educational programs, immersive events, and engagement opportunities aimed at deepening understanding of local culture and culinary traditions alongside an enjoyable and lively experience with the region’s most delicious food and beverage offerings. Explore the diverse culinary landscape of the Lowcountry with offerings from snack shacks and food trucks, then wander through creatively named drink villages, including the beer garden, cork yard, and rosé garden. Browse artisanal goods at the marketplaces and enjoy live music or dance at the silent disco.

Photos courtesy of Charleston Wine and Food Festival.


Written by Ellie Lowenstein | @ellielowenstein