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SOUTHERN INDIANA - Indiana's wine trail event is here. With basketball fever in the air and winter's chill mixing with the first signs of spring, the Indiana Uplands Wine Trail will bring back its most popular event.
Now in its fourth year, the March Gladness food extravaganza will offer four days of food and fun. During Saturday and Sunday, the IUWT allows visitors to experience the wine trail VIP style with behind-the-scenes tours and tastings, gourmet hors d'oeuvres and desserts and special vintage wines.
Now in its seventh year, the Indiana Uplands Wine Trail is composed of nine wineries - Huber, Best, Turtle Run, Winzerwald, French Lick, Carousel, Oliver, Butler and Brown County.
The basketball theme pervades this year's popular food and wine event. Carousel Winery owner Sue Wilson said, "We're just going to have a ball at Carousel" during March Gladness and Winzerwald Winery owner Dan Adams announced that "We've got balls" during March Gladness because all the foods served will be in mini-ball shapes and mini stress ball gifts will be given to each ticket holder.
Tickets are available at any trail winery for only $30 and entitle ticket holders to visit each of nine wineries once over the two-day event.
Tickets may also be used in conjunction with the IUWT's ever-popular Passport program. Participants receive a free picnic blanket upon completion of the trail and are automatically entered into a grand-prize drawings for Indiana-designed amethyst jewelry and overnight hotel packages at the Vintage Indiana Festival in downtown Indianapolis June 5.
All IUWT wineries from Bloomington south to I-64 will pair a wide array of wines with foods:
Winzerwald Winery: The winery will serve mini brie cheese balls with seven-grain crackers, melon balls with fresh raspberries and blueberries, Italian meatball and fresh spinach soup with grated parmigiano-reggiano and mini-sorbet balls all served in the wine cellar with a free thank-you stress ball gift.
French Lick Winery: This winery will offer up tastes from their on-site Vintage Café Restaurant including their "famous" lasagna and fresh garlic bread along with delicious French Lick wine cake for dessert.
Carousel Winery: The winery will be "havin' a ball" and will treat visitors to egg balls - a gourmet twist.
Visit www.IndianaUplands.com for links to individual wineries and their event schedules and how you can become an associate member of the wine trail.