Once upon a time, the only thing to do in early November was to sit by the window, watching the snow line slowly creep down towards the valley.
These days, it’s impossible to think of November in Whistler without conjuring up images of multicourse meals, divine cocktails, and enough wines to send your head spinning (literally and figuratively).
That’s because November 6 to 16 marks the Cornucopia food and wine festival. This 11-day event features tastings, workshops, competitions, debates, multi-course meals, and some seriously show-stopping parties.
If you appreciate a good meal and a fine glass of wine – and really, who doesn’t – we wholeheartedly recommend checking out at least a few Cornucopia events this year. With events suited for every palette and budget, you’re sure to find something that piques your interest. Our guide to all things Cornucopia will help you tackle this festival like a seasoned professional.
Step One: Create a Plan of Attack
On the one hand, with 11 days of festivities, you’re going to want to pace yourself. On the other hand, Cornucopia only comes once a year, and you want to experience as much as you possibly can.
Our tip for enjoying Cornucopia to its fullest is to plan out your course of action ahead of time. There are plenty of events to attend – check out the Cornucopia website for extensive details – and balance is key.
For instance, on Saturday, November 15, you could sign up for back-to-back sessions of “Gin Uplugged”, “Single Malt Seduction”, and “Whisky Revolution”—but that might be too much of a good thing. Instead, swap out “Single Malt Seduction” for the “Holiday Cooking Made Easy” culinary stage series to break things up and fill your belly with food.
Step Two: Get Your Tickets
If you haven’t picked up your tickets already, do it now! Cornucopia is hugely popular, and many of the events sell out in advance. If you waited until the last minute, check out the mid-week events, which are typically a bit quieter than the weekends.
Step Three: Collect Some Friends
Gather an entourage of equally food-and-drink obsessed friends to join you for the parties and tasting events. If you can’t find anyone to join you, check out the workshops and seminars solo. These settings won’t feel weird even if you’ve come on your own, and who knows—maybe you’ll meet some new likeminded friends!
Step Four: Dress to the Nines
If you’re hitting up one of the evening parties or galas, consider swapping the usual Whistler-casual dress code for something a little more stylish. Cornucopia is one of those rare Whistler events where attendees dress to impress, so leave the trainers at home and find those heels/dress shoes buried in the back of your closet.
Step Five: Counter-Cornucopia
The brilliant folks at Cornucopia have incorporated the antidote to too much indulgent food and drink: Nourish. The Nourish series provides the perfect balance to the rest of the events on the schedule. Start your day off with a yoga class or meditation session, and counter rich treats with healthier options, like the raw food luncheon or the “How to Energy Test Your Food” workshop. You could also try the raw cacao ceremony paired with yoga — everything in moderation, right?