Tesuque-based cookbook author Cheryl Alters Jamison remembers the first Santa Fe Wine and Chile Fiesta, in 1991. “It was in the parking lot behind what was then Sanbusco Center. I loved it from the beginning. I remember they rented stoves to have in the parking lot,” she reminisced.
Like many of 2020’s festivals and markets, this year’s SFWC Fiesta ran the risk of being canceled, another casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic. How could the bustling restaurant dinners, wine seminars, food demonstrations and foodie schmoozing possibly comply with social distancing and health mandates?
Enter the era of the Zoom wine tasting. After attending an online tasting organized by Spottswoode Winery in Napa Valley, Wine and Chile Fiesta Executive Director Greg O’Byrne saw that, with a few creative tweaks, he could shift the festival to a largely virtual format. With a combination of Zoom events, and outdoor patio wine luncheons and dinners, the Santa Fe Wine and Chile Fiesta will celebrate its 30th year Sept. 23-27.