Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction
Kentucky is a magical place to be in the days leading up to “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports” the Kentucky Derby. Each May, LCF host its annual Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction & Derby Gala, the nation’s only charity wine event integrating fine wines and equestrian culture.
Over the years, the event has become one of the cultural and social highlights of Derby week. The auction, attended by more than 500 guests, is held at Donamire Farm, one of the most beautiful Thoroughbred horse farms in Lexington. Attendees include West Coast vintners, affluent Kentucky residents and national guests.
Annually, the event has grown to feature more vintners and has expanded into an abundant four-day Derby celebration.
The following vintners have participated; Silver Oak, Charles Krug, Quintessa, Reynolds Family Vineyards, ROY Estate, Lail Family Vineyards, Revana Family Vineyards, Blackbird Vineyards, Domaine Serene, Jackson Family Wines, Continuum Estate, Fisher Vineyard, Hess Collection, Hourglass, Realm Cellars, Red Mare Wines, Rombauer Vineyards, Tusk Estates, Ziata Wines, Duckhorn Vineyards and many more.
The opening event for the Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction & Derby Gala is an evening of private vintner dinners held in LCF patron homes. Participating vintners are featured at one of five private dinners for 20 guests at beautiful homes located in Lexington. The vintners pour their wines for hors d’oeuvers and during dinner.
The Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction & Derby Gala features an event specifically for vintners to showcase their reds and whites to regional retailers, restaurateurs, collectors and more. Prior to the auction, over 150 attendees sample some of California’s most highly regarded wines at the Trade Wine Tasting.
The auction and gala are the main event, held Thursday. Vintner pouring and silent auction kick off the event, followed by dinner and a live auction. Dancing to live music and socializing among the region’s cultural, community, financial and social leaders follows the live auction.
Live auction items have include trips to Cannes Film Festival, Montage Laguna Beach, private mansion in Carmel with golf at Pebble Beach, donation by Exclusive Resorts with choice of location, Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in New York, exclusive Napa Valley excursions, a Lexus vehicle and many more.
Participating vintners and sponsors attend horse farm tours though the Central Kentucky region and see firsthand the outdoor treasures that make Lexington the “Horse Capital of the World” on Friday. This day of touring comes to a close at the Iroquois Hunt Club, a well-known fox hunting club. At the hunt club, guests are treated to the finest of southern hospitality and enjoy delicious cuisine.
On Saturday, vintners and sponsors travel to Churchill Downs, the premier Thoroughbred racetrack known as the “Home of the Kentucky Derby.” Guests sip Mint Juleps, admire Derby fashions and enjoy all the thrills of horse racing, including, the Kentucky Derby. Guests are seated at impossible to obtain seats, just yards away from the track.
In only eight years, the Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction & Derby Gala has raised more than eight million dollars in support of LCF’s mission to fight cancer.
The Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction is an experience unlike any other!
The 2014 Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction & Derby Gala will be held on Thursday, May 1, 2014 at Donamire Farm, Lexington. For event details, please see 2014 Wine Auction.