“Sip. Savor. Repeat.” is the life motto and overall vibe at Clearwater Beach Uncorked, and I was lucky enough to attend this annual event last weekend. Local friends, it’s a must-attend event every year! Friends not from Florida: not a bad way to enjoy a little vacation before the holiday hustle.
This was my second year attending Clearwater Beach Uncorked [I did receive two free VIP media tickets in exchange for review, but as always all opinions are my own], and it was even better than last year. Okay, so check it: the weather was PERFECT. The morning started off in the high 50’s/low 60s, but by the time we arrived, the weather was seriously amazing; not too hot, and not cold at all. You could not have asked for a more perfect day – weather wise.
If you’ve never been to or heard of Clearwater Beach Uncorked, let me give you some info: with 180 degree views of the Gulf of Mexico, you’ve literally got your toes in the sand as you make your way around to each booth with yummy local bites, snacks, and bevvys! There was something for everyone, from local wineries and breweries [Keel and Curley Winery + Two Henrys, and so many more] to more national brands that you can find at your local Publix, it was a great way to sip and sample a little bit of everything.
Jeni’s Ice Cream made an appearance with amazing artisan flavors, and a prosecco float, which you know is my kind of thing. I’ve heard a ton of people rave about Jeni’s, but this was my first time trying. I totally get the hype, and it’s worth the treat, guys.
Duda Farms was there again this year with the super personable Chef Todd Fisher, whipping up Sweet Corn Hummus [find the recipe here] – and you know I love Duda Family Fresh Corn, so I was excited to see them there with a demo this year. Actually, the Thursday before Clearwater Beach Uncorked, Duda Farms [you’ll probably see them in stores as, “Dandy”] invited a handful of us to a dinner at my local Publix Aprons Cooking School where we enjoyed a full dinner planned by Chef Todd, and executed by the amazing chefs at Publix Aprons Cooking School to kick off the Uncorked Weekend, and everything was creative and delicious.
The original plan was to bring Jason like last year, but he ended up having a really bad cold all week, and didn’t want to get worse, so at the last minute I brought my littlest sister for a girls day, and we had a great time. This event is great for couples, for friends, sisters, whatever…one of my favorite things about living where I do, is how welcoming everywhere is. I know that may sound cheesy, but really how can everyone not be welcome when we have a beach to walk on, with wine to sip?
After Chef Todd’s live demo, we made our way from the main tent at Clearwater Beach Uncorked to the VIP tasting village at the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach. Last year, there were definitely less people in the VIP area, but I kind of liked that it was almost double the amount because again it was beautiful weather and it’s a great way to make new friends [free samples help.]
The VIP area was mainly spirits you’ll find at a Publix liquor store, but there were two sweet treats from Chef Frank Anderson, culinary director at The Rez Grill [found within the Hard Rock Hotel] and another sweet corn recipe from Chef Todd with Duda Farms. Both were delicious, but would you expect anything less?!
The one complaint I think anyone had in the VIP location was the lack of real food with so many spirits. Though honestly, it was a very quick and easy walk back to the main tent to Clearwater Beach Uncorked, so it wasn’t like we were miles away without sustenance [LOL] but it would have been nice for sure.
Clearwater Beach Uncorked really is such a fun event, with amazing views. It was the perfect way to unwind for the day before the holiday hustle kicks in – cheers!