Holly Hill Inn's Wine Guild: Train That Tongue!


Most of us know so little about wine that the idea of facing a wine list at a restaurant head-on is enough to send us straight to the iced tea column, where the hardest choice is "sweet or unsweetened?" Holly Hill Inn launched its Wine Guild in 2008 as a way to help us make friends with wine and with other people who find it intriguing. Membership is free; charges for particular Guild events vary. Barreling Along, the thorough, informative occasional Guild newsletter, comes by email and serves as a fine free benefit.


Guildmaster Steve Mancuso's background as a debater and debate coach shows in the detailed research and meticulous tasting notes he offers at each Guild event, and in his encyclopedic knowledge of wines and their provenance. Guildmaster Mancuso never takes a debater's attitude with tasters, though, perhaps since there's no successful arguing with a wine taster's preferences or palate. We like what we like -- and what I like, particularly and above all, in both food and drink, is tasting, comparing, considering, conversing, trying things out. So Holly Hill Wine Guild events make me quite happy.

Typical Guild events take place at the beautiful Inn in Midway, Kentucky, and include tasting and learning about six wines. The events last about an hour, and cost $30. Usually the Inn offers two seatings for each tasting, one at 6:00 PM and one at 7:30 PM, with about 12 seats available for each seating. Small plates of cheeses and crackers are available, but the wines are the primary focus. Many people adjourn from the tasting to enjoy a memorable meal at Holly Hill Inn.

Wine Guild tastings happen at least monthly, and special events like winemaker dinners happen often, too, sometimes with special discounts for Guild members. The next tasting event (from Barreling Along):

Our monthly in-house tasting, Spain and Portugal: The Sultry Wines of Iberia, will take place on Wednesday, October 13 and Thursday, October 14.  We'll sample six wines from Spain on the 13th and six Portuguese wines, including a vintage port, on the 14th.  Please join us either night or both.

November's tastings feature Washington state wines, and the December tasting has a holiday theme. See a schedule on the Holly Hill Inn's Wine List page.

All Guild events are not all high end. One new feature is an occasional "do it yourself" tasting in a Guild member's home, for $10 and a bottle of your favorite wine.

Contact stevehollyhillinncom to join the Guild. Over time, you'll notice your Wine List-o-Phobia trickling right down the drain.

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The world is coming to visit central Kentucky this year for the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. To help our visitors know more about Kentucky's food and food ways, Savoring Kentucky is rolling out 116 Savory Kentucky Bites, one for each of the 100 days before WEG begins, and 16 for the days during WEG, September 25 - October 10. Today's Savory Bite is number 98.

116 World EQ Game Postrona