As if you needed another reason to celebrate wine, the 5th annual Wharf Uncorked Food and Wine Festival will be coming to Orange Beach Thursday, Sept. 13, through Saturday, Sept. 15. Local talent meets more than 100 wine labels, book signings by James Briscione and Brooke Pankhurst, and a luxury yacht walk as well as silent auctions benefiting Make-A-Wish Alabama.

Thursday begins with a VIP kickoff and Chef Showdown with high-end wine tastings, small plates and an open bar with a signature cocktail from Opelika’s John Emerald Distillery. A fight for the best Alabama Gulf seafood begins when Chef Chris Kelley puts his title on the line against three local chefs. Tickets for this event are $45.

Friday night is an evening of wine dinners as several of The Wharf’s on-property venues offer curated menus with wine pairings. Make a reservation with the restaurant of your choosing. The full list is available at www.thewharfuncorked.com.

Sept. 15 wraps up the festival with a Saturday night Grand Tasting presented by Rouses Markets. Main Street and Wharf Parkway will be the official entertainment district as vendors line the area with offerings of wine, beer and spirits. Expect small bites from more than 12 local restaurants in the culinary competition. Guests have their chance to cast votes for their favorite dish for the People’s Choice Award while taking in chef and mixology demonstrations at the Rouses Markets Culinary Experience Stage.

Grand Tasting event tickets are $70. Combination Grand Tasting/VIP/Chef Showdown tickets are available for $100. Tickets can be purchased online at www.ticketmaster.com or at The Wharf box office. For more information about the festival visit thewharfuncorked.com; to learn more about the venue go to alwharf.com.


Anheuser-Busch pokes fun at PSL with gimmick logo

Let me say my father was a Busch man and with this stunt I may become one myself. With the latest release of fall’s most “basic” trend of pumpkin spice latte (PSL) buzzing the crowd, Anheuser-Busch threw their hat in the game with the release of “Busch Latte.”

Don’t be misled. It’s too good to be true, but their new ad campaign shows pics of redesigned Busch Light cans sporting the new name. It is highly unlikely these cans will ever see the fluorescent light of a mini-mart or grocery shelf, but if this campaign takes off (and I hope it does) the fine folks at Busch should rethink their strategy and release a collector’s edition.

Though the new cans aren’t available you can still purchase plenty of Busch Latte merchandise, including T-shirts, hats and beer huggers. Busch got the idea for this marketing scheme from fans who already refer to their beer as Busch Latte on Twitter, so I’d say this is the better option to the most