Rob Little (left) and Kent Rode preparing their annual food and wine extravaganza at the Adventure Hotel.

Rob Little (left) and Kent Rode preparing their annual food and wine extravaganza at the Adventure Hotel.

Food and wine festival ‘a spectacular undertaking’

The Adventure Hotel's food and wine festival runs October 17 from 7 to 10 p.m.

At the Nelson Fall Wine and Food Festival on October 17 at the Adventure Hotel there will be 600 bottles of wine to be tasted, and you can try a taste of skewered rosemary swordfish.

“We will have seafood station with live cooking, a full oyster bar, an enormous dessert station, and staff walking around with canapés and hot hors d’oevres,” says Adventure Hotel’s food and beverage manager Rob Little.

“For our chef Kent Rode it is really a spectacular undertaking. It is a great opportunity for him to step out. We have no budgetary restrictions on him and he gets to work uninhibited. He is an artist and that makes him happy.”

The festival has grown over its 14 years to the point where the Adventure Hotel has to remove the furniture from its steak house, coffee bar, sports bar, and banquet room to accommodate it.

“We transform the whole place. It is really a dramatic undertaking for our staff,” Little says. “But in our business this is what we get up for, the accomplishment of pulling it off and seeing everyone enjoying their night, that makes it worthwhile.

“We are at a point where it is hard to grow any further,” he adds. “When we started, it was just in the banquet room with just a handful of wineries.”

This year about 100 wineries will be represented, half of them from B.C., and the others from an array of countries including France, Italy, Australia, Spain, and South Africa.

Little, who is a trained and highly experienced sommelier, says Nelson is a good place for a wine festival because it is midway between two important local wine producing areas: the Creston Valley and the Similkameen Valley. And he says Nelson is a natural for this festival in other ways too.

“Nelson is very cultured, there are lots of ‘foodies’ here. We have a community that is really appreciative of good wine and good food.”

The festival runs from 7 until 10 p.m. of October 17. Tickets are $110, available at the Adventure Hotel front desk. The festival will, as always, donate a portion of the proceeds to a local charity.