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Yesterday we officially kicked off the PINOT PALOOZA 2016 TOUR.

Really, it’s a birthday party. The event turns 5 this year and when we look back to the first haphazard, fly by the seat of our pants event at Ormond Hall in 2012, to the six city tour, two country beast that it is now, its come a long way.

For those of you who don’t know about the event, its a rocking celebration of our favourite grape, Pinot Noir. How did I come up with it? Well, I was drinking too much Pinot Noir (in enthusiastic moderation!) and I may have called out ‘I’d love to do an event called Pinot Palooza’; a throwback to the classic festival of LollaPalooza.

The rest is history.

And since then, its been amazing to see how its grown and how its been received and supported by not just the wineries involved, but attendees.

Wine is so hot right now. Never before have people been more interested in wine -but they want to learn about it and experience it the same way in which they consume it; socially.

No one wants to sit in a classroom listening to a bunch of old men tell them what they don’t know.

Because wine should be fun first, facts second. I think this is at the core of the success and growth of not just Pinot Palooza, but our other events and many others like them.

Over 60% of our attendees are women. Over 60% of our attendees are under the age of 35 and in that demographic with the percentage of women increasing to 65% and, in some cities, 70%. A far cry from those who say young people aren’t into wine.

I’m stoked we’re kicking off the 2016 tour. This year we have over 250 wines on tasting from 100 odd pinot noir producers from Australia & New Zealand throughout the six city tour. Not only do we return to Adelaide, Perth, Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane but we head to Auckland for the first time.

We’re really ramping up the whole event this year with more awesome Pinot, and we’re taking the food & drinks offering to the next level as well.

Do likes of Burn City Smokers, Ladro, Belle’s Hot Chicken, Bodega, Africola, Gerards, Yarra Valley Dairy, Young Henrys, Sample brew (and heaps more) sound like a good idea? Yeah, we think so too.

We’ve come along way since the first event in 2012. We’ve had over 200 wineries involved. Run the event 12 times with over 15,000 bottles of wine poured. That’s a lot.

Out of those 200, seven wineries have been at every single one and they continue that trend in 2016. Massive thanks to Curly Flat, Moondarra, Yabby Lake, Josef Chromy, Mt Difficulty, Giesen and Greywacke. What I also like about these producers, is that its a snapshot of the broad range of wineries we’ve had involved from so many regions. Its actually quite humbling.

So here we go. Another year of the biggest celebration of Pinot Noir in the country,

What about the next five years?

We’re going to make Pinot Palooza the biggest Pinot Noir event on the planet. Look out Asia and the USA, we’re coming for you!

*mic drop*

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