Tickets to Saratoga Wine & Food Fest tasting

SPAC Wine and Food Festival.jpgUpdate: The drawing's closed, the winners have been emailed!

The Saratoga Wine & Food and Fall Ferrari Festival is this coming weekend at SPAC. One of the highlights of the weekend is the "grand tasting" on Saturday:

The crown-jewel of the weekend: 200 international wineries including an unparalleled Italian Pavilion that features a myriad of wines, spirits, and authentic products; the region's top restaurants; world-class seminars and a live and silent auction of luxury items. A day dedicated to the epicurean in all of us; a celebration of all things fine.

AOA has 10 pairs of tickets for the grand tasting -- and we'd like to give them away. Maybe even to you. To enter, please answer this question in the comments:

What does it mean to live the good life in the Capital Region?

We'll draw 10 winners at random from the entered comments.

Tickets for the grand tasting are $75 each, so this is a rather sweet prize. The tasting is from 1-4:30 pm on the SPAC grounds. It's age 21 and up.

There are a bunch of other events as part of the festival -- including the Ferrari show at the Saratoga Automobile Museum.

Important: All comments must be submitted by 10 am on Wednesday (September 7, 2011) to be entered in the drawing. You must answer the question to be part of the drawing. One entry per person, please. You must enter a valid email address (that you check regularly) with your comment. The winner will be notified via email by noon on Wednesday and must respond by 10 am Thursday (September 8, 2011).

Yep, the Saratoga Wine & Food Fesitval did advertise on AOA.


Living the good life in the Capital Region means enjoying the local fruits and celebrating regional history and happenings. You can find the good life anywhere from the Troy Waterfront Farmers' Market to the Capital Region Apple and Wine Festival (and of course, the Saratoga Wine & Food Fest). The good life is in the best local, independent restaurants, wineries, and microbreweries. It's in the pizza and wings, and the parks you go to to walk off that pizza and wings. It's eating, smelling, seeing, and touching the Capital Region!

What does it mean to live the good life in the Capital Region?

I think that living the good life means knowing about the little treasures of the Capital Region (many of which we find on AoA). Living the good life is a fresh cider donut at Indian Ladder or a picnic and music on a warm summer evening at SPAC.

To me, living the good life in Albany means that I can go for lunch any day to Kinnaree on Lark Street or Van's on Central, go out with my best friends on friday to the Allen Street Pub, to Palais Royale on Saturday with my friends from college, to drunk brunch on Sunday with my coworkers (maybe), and to McGuire's for special occasions, or when I want to remember what it's like to wear a suit and drink wine from a glass. Any time in between, there's always Crisan's (any other city's bakery can eat its heart out), The Wine Store on New Scotland, and The Fountain, also on New Scotland. No other week/end could be possible without the unique offerings of such a great city; it's a good (gastronomical) life in Albany!

To enjoy everything that it has to offer and not complain about any of its shortcomings.

Living the good life in the Capital Region means taking advantage of all of our seasons. Snowshoeing and sledding in winter, tulips in the spring, kayaking and hiking in the summer, and apples and foliage in the fall! :-)

Enjoying the things the abundance of outdoor activities that don't exist downstate.

Living the good life here means taking part in all the wonderful things our community has to offer, food, music, and of course the people.

Realizing that you can go swimming anywhere you want, not just at state parks. Also riding the first friday trolley around Albany at dusk with friends, wine, and happy little kids.

Living the good life means being able to walk my dog down Lark St. and notice something new/interesting every time -- and, of course, stopping in for an hour-long massage once or twice a month.

What does it mean to live the good life in the Capital Region?

It means berry picking and grafton lake in summer, apple picking and foliage hiking in fall, snowboarding and trips to nearby places in winter and enjoying the green again in Spring.

I think that the good life is having enough free time to enjoy our short summer with the people you love at the region's best summer spots: swimming at lake george & the upper hudson river, losing money at the track, your favorite concert at spac, first fridays in albany, the list goes on forever...

To stop comparing it to other places I've lived and enjoy it as much as I can while I'm here!

Right now living the good life in the Capital Region means being above water (literally and figuratively) and having a job.

For me living the good life in Albany includes: walking down Lark St and downtown Albany, all the outdoor festivals like Tulip Fest and Lark Fest, free events like Park Playhouse and Alive at Five, Saratoga in the summer, taking a cruise down the Hudson in Aquaduck, Dutch Apple or JP Morgan Cruise, seeing shows at Palace Theater and the Egg, and going to St Patricks Day Parade in Albany (without rioting!).

Normally the good life is tooling around the back roads of Sch'dy and Schoharie County, picking up some fresh picked sweet corn and fruit from the stands out on Rt. 30, coming home and kicking back eating corn until the butter runs down your arms. Too bad Irene ruined it all.

Living the good life is going to the Saratoga Wine & Food and Fall Ferrari Festival and hide a piece of cheese in the air vent of a very expensive car.

Being able to take my baby for long walks in my lovely Albany neighborhood- on sidewalks down tree-lined streets while I admire historic homes. We can walk to the post office, pharmacy, gym, pizza place, deli, Stewarts, library, the doctor's, the playground, and even a pond. Living in the City of Albany has everything I wanted as a kid growing up in the suburbs (namely: walkability. and schools with stairs. and frequent fireworks).

Living the good life is having a great family, being able to pay all your bills on time and taking in all the capital region has to offer

Snowshoeing, hiking & exploring the state parks and preserves, apple & berry picking, and cider donut eating. Getting fresh fruits & veggies from the Troy farmers market, indulging in wine at the wine bar, and enjoying fresh coffee & bagels from Uncommon Grounds.

Living the good life is being self employed, working hard and playing hard. Seasonal attractions like the Saratoga track, as well as museums, parks, attractions, restaurants, bars, theater, etc all make for a great quality of life here in Albany. If you are bored it's your own fault!

Taking advantage of what the region has to offer, cultural, culinary and aesthetic. Given this economy, the last one is particularly important...

Living the good life in the Capital Region is a hot dinner date at New World Bistro, followed by a movie at the Spectrum, topped off with a cup of coffee and good conversation at Ultraviolet Cafe.

Living the good life means taking advantage of all the great things, big and small, our towns offer. It's a glass of white wine and a lobster roll on Yanni's deck, it's a glass of red wine and the fireplaces of the Lark Wine Bar, it's Shake Shack at the track, it's the lobster and avocado tart at Creo, it's brunch at Provence, it's the bunnies in my backyard, it's mini-dogs at Famous Lunch (or Gus'), it's wine class at For Love of Wine, it's a backyard BBQ with friends.

It means going to the Troy farmer's market on the weekends and living in a beautiful area.

Living the good life in the Capital Region means always discovering something new to love about it whether it be a new restaurant or a new waterfall to gaze at (thanks, AOA!) and not shortchanging the wonderful things we have here.

Getting to take advantage of our great restaurants, outdoor activities and the "This Week Ahead"/"Things to do this weekend" events on AOA!

Living the good life in the Capital Region means enjoying everything the area has to offer. From the trendy city feeling of Lark Street to the small town vibe of Troy's Farmers Market, it's impossible not to enjoy the area. I've lived here all my life and couldn't be happier.

The good's time for me to stop complaining and realize that I do live a good life in the Capital Region! Lots of things are indicative of the good life around here:
-Abundant farmers markets, as well as plentiful other food sources
-A vibrant online community, which has led me to new friends (online and in real life) and new experiences
-Seemingly endless options for entertainment: Proctors, SPAC, TU Center, myriad community theaters, symphony orchestras (yes, plural!), college sports, etc. Your calendar can be full every night of the week!
-A wide array of dining choices, no matter what you're craving.
-The people around here are just plain nice. Look at what's going on in Schoharie and in Rotterdam Junction - people helping their fellow man. That's the good life.

Being able to enjoy all of the wonderful farmer's markets year round. Also being central to a couple mountain ranges for the best hiking.

It means Troy Chowderfest and Lakeside Farms for apples in the fall. It is the horses at Saratoga and lots of great local music at all of the different summer series (most of them free), and carriage rides through the lights in the park and being close to a lot of great ski ares in the winter. It means Albany's Tulip Fest and a lot of great local fishing spots in the spring.

Being part of a community where I am involved in social action and political advocacy as well as a thriving arts scene.

Kick Butt for all 4 seasons. Laugh at all the Florida transplants for moving to a constant heat wave.

Living the good life in the area is being fortunate to have the means to enjoy many of the events and indulgences featured here, on AoA, and elsewhere.

It means attending events at Saratoga in the Summer, apple picking in the Fall, Skiing in the Winter and loving life even more in the Spring!

I feel the best when I get a deck seat at Brown's on Troy Night Out in the summer time. Good friends, great beer...nothing beats it.

Means spending time with family and friends in a wonderful place with fantastic venues from SPAC to The Egg to picking apples in the fall to relaxing by Lake George in the Summer!

Living the good life in the Capital Region means being fortunate enough to see the beauty and value in all the unique things the area has to offer - from the battlefields to the state parks and the plethora of events.

Enjoying nature in the area. From the trails to hike, to the fruit at the farmers markets. The capital region is so blessed with beauty and activity in all seasons. With so much to do and see, all of us can live the good life in Albany for free.

It means not living the bad life on Long Island!

We are not just Living the Good Life - We are giving the Good Life right here in the Capital Region.

I enjoy the good life here because I am able to have the best of both the 'city' and 'country' worlds. Lots of busy bars and restaurants downtown, but I only have to drive 15 minutes to reach at least two orchards to go apple picking. There's amazing venues for concerts and the area is chock full of historical sights. There's always something to do no matter what I am in the mood for.

C - arrying a six pack home from Brown’s
A - rbitrarily betting on a horse at the track
P - erusing the shelves at Dove & Hudson
I - dly strolling the Mohawk-Hudson trail
T - aking home a pizza from DeFazio’s
A - ttempting to kayak on Saratoga Lake
L - urking on Lark

R - eading at the Troy Public Library
E - ating by the Hudson
G - iving in to ice cream at The Snowman
I - nsisting on farmer’s market fare
O - gling at the scenery on Peebles Island
N - ever getting bored!

The good life....a space of one's own, delicious food, amazing music, beautiful things to see hear taste do abound. There's so much to love. Indie art, design, and music, farm food aplenty, amazing local chefs, an eclectic mix of local bloggers and happening people. The Capital District is pretty effin' rad.

Enjoying all the great outdoor concerts and plays in the summer, the october fests of the fall, fantastic skiing and snowshoeing in the winter, and the beautiful tulips of the spring!

Living the good life in the Capital Region is enjoying all the local events there are and making the most of everything there is to do and see.

it's easy to live the good life in the capital district. one can easily hop from shopping in the city, hitting the farmer's markets for fresh local good and then hike deep into the woods all within one day. the diversity is one thing that makes me love the area.

Balancing the urban and rural, embracing the familiar and going out of the way to explore the new or overlooked, seeking and receiving influences from beyond the region, valuing family and old friends while welcoming newcomers and appreciating the relative ease with which we can enjoy these opportunities given our propitious location and diversity.

Helping others and doing the right thing is Living the Good Life here.

Living the good life in Albany means that I can spend a morning exploring new places and restaurants in the city and then drive for 15 minutes to enjoy the spectacular rolling hills of the country. Yes, you can have it both ways!

The good life is a bag of apple cider donuts and a big mug of coffee. Taking a rainy Sunday to go to the State Museum, and sit in the Daily Grind reading a book. Finishing a night out on Lark with an early morning breakfast at Cafe 217.

It seems silly but, to me, living the good life in the Capital District means seeing an ice cream truck and assuming its cupcakes!

Getting out and enjoying all the fabulous things to do in the area! Parks, chillin on the water, SPAC, the track, more museums than I can count...

Avoiding peak-rush hour and parking in Center Square during the session, taking advantage of our four seasons - particularly Apple Picking, and always asking "What would AOA do?" before heading out to an event... this is how to live the good life in the Capital District.

Living the good life in the Capital Region is to enjoy whatever appeals to you from what the region has to offer. For me, it's the music scene, the food and the beautiful scenery that makes living life good for this Albany transplant.

You are living the good life if you are aware that the Capital Region is the best kept secret on this side of the Mississippi. Forget NYC and you can keep your tourist traps on the coast, the Captial Region has it all. And if you dont realize this then my friend, you are not living the good life

Living the good life in the Capital Region is taking full advantage of the city and country aspects (former NYC resident here) -- friendly neighbors, hiking and running trails aplenty, a view of the Hudson when it's not threatening to flood my apt, great local food and having AOA to tell me about all the great things in the region for me to do! (How else would I know to stalk Ryan Gosling?)

Living the good life in the Capital District means being able wake up with my windows open to the smell of crisp fresh adirondack air, never having to worry about locking my doors, driving to my office in 30 minutes or less with no traffic all while listening to great music and watching the beautiful scenery, encountering truly pleasant and genuine people, participating in a variety of family friendly activities from a run in the Saratoga State Park, to a trip to the lake to apple picking in the fall. The Capital District provides the comforts and conveniences of any big city with the charm and grace of a small town, all while being only 2.5 hours from some of the greatest cities in the world, Boston, NYC and Montreal. The central location of the area provides for an ideal spot to raise a family and live a great life!

Living the good life in the Capital Region means beating the rush hour commute on the Northway, especially the AM bottleneck above the twins and the PM bottleneck at exit 7.

Living the good life in the Capital Region is the privilege of driving with rush hour traffic on the Northway. Who wants to live near where they work!? Plus, then we can all slow down and admire the Twin Bridges, every, single, day...

Living the good life in the Captial Region means getting fresh berries at the Troy Farmer's Market on a warm summer's day, going hiking in the nearby Catskills, watching 4th of July fireworks from my back steps, and enjoying all the other great summer things while they last. I need those things to get through winter!

Revelling in the absence of commuter traffic. Wandering through the state museum. Eating Jason Baker's food. Having tickets to seven different concerts, in seven different genres, at seven different locations, and not feeling cash-strapped. Sitting in on a class at a local university.

To preface, I've only been living in the Capital Region for the past year. However, I've found that living the good life here involves taking advantage of the proximity of great parks, mountains and lakes as well as supporting the farmers markets and local food purveyors. It doesn't hurt to have found a great network of friends here as well.

Living the good life in the Capital Region means taking advantage of all the things going on here - music at the Egg, movies at the Spectrum, Proctor's and the Palace, and sometimes just napping in the hammock.

Taking advantage of all the area has to offer. Apple cider donuts, all the great little resturants, farmers markets, larkfest, tulipfest....

To take advantage of everything the area has to offer, and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere that goes along with it.

Living the good life is eating at all the great restaurants in the area

Having a beautiful wife, a healthy daughter, a house over our heads and a job.

Living in the capital region means getting the best of all worlds. A bit urban, a bit rural, a bit summer, a bit winter a lot of awesome.

Make time to eat and drink with family and friends. My favorite things.

I live the good life everyday with my best friend and wife. My life is fantastic.

Living the good life is realizing that you don't have to leave your neighborhood to appreciate the abundance of activities and beauty that are around you.

I think it's enjoying the great outdoors in the region. We've got such an abundance, from beautiful mountains to a plethora of waterways. Even just driving to work every day on I-90, I almost always see hawks or birds or turkeys.

Direct flights to Las Vegas.

Being in the Capital Region is about being next to all that is good about New York State. The excitement of being near multiple cities, many fine dining locations and entertainment venues, enjoying the beauty of the four seasons, the grandeur of the Adirondacks, the camaraderie of good neighbors, a lengthy and rich history, and the thrill of being at the heart of New York State’s government (which is always entertaining).

What does it mean to live the good life in the Capital Region?

To drive as little as possible, find hidden gems like the Co-op and Kinnaree and Hudson River Coffee House, meet strangers in our neighborhood when they are drawn to our adorable tiny dog, and steadfastly deny winter will ever happen again.

Also, most importantly, it means to accept that the Capital Region is not Seattle, not the Bay Area, not even remotely the West Coast. It is its own unique thing. And it is sometimes maddeningly different from what we are used to. But you won't find a Cardona's out west. You won't live across the street from a park designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. And you won't find Hounds On Hudson, the finest dog walkers in the land!

To me living the good life in the Capital Region is apple cider donuts, fall foliage, and the crisp weather to be enjoyed with great friends. It means delish fondue at the Gingerman, endless rolls at Sake Cafe, and the amazing Tiramisu that comes in your own glass bowl to take home at Ragonese Imports. Desserts from Peaches in Stuyvesant Plaza, the race tracks in Saratoga, and shopping for vintage pins at Elissa Halloran on Lark. That is what the good life is about to me!

I live in Troy, so the good life to me is being able to walk to a public library with Tiffany stained glass windows, play with my dog on the lawn in Russell Sage or Barker Parks, eat til I'm stuffed at Illium Cafe and watch Third St unfold out of my floor to ceiling Victorian era windows in my living room all while being within close driving distance to my family in Averill Park and western Mass.

For me, living the good life in the Capital Region means: going anywhere with my great-nephew, seeing live shows, sitting on my friend's patio overlooking Saratoga Lake, and walking down Lark Street or through Congress Park.

Living the good life means getting out there and exploring what the Capital Region has to offer. There are a ton of great restaurants and activities in a very small area and you can always find something new to try.

Living the good life in the Capital Region means having access to great festivals and entertainment, dining at some of the best restaurants in the state, Lark Street, beautiful parks, and residing around the State Capitol.

Having a wonderful family who I love and a house over my head!

Indulging in the delicious food the capital region has to offer. From Thai to Mexican, Lebanese, Italian, etc. We are lucky to have culinary masters in this area that can take us all over the world. Not to mention the amazing sweets we have like Cheesecake Machismo, Moxies (and all of the other ice cream meccas), cupcakes galore...and the farmers markets are exciting as well.

Living the good life in the Capital Region means enjoying a high quality of life due to an easy commute and a fairly low cost of living.

Enjoying all of what this area has to offer for every season of the year.

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For a decade All Over Albany was a place for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. It was kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who could help you find out what's up. AOA stopped publishing at the end of 2018.

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