By Paul T. Choate
April 5, 2013. In conjunction with the Blue Ridge Wine and Food Festival that runs from April 10-14, the Green Park Inn will host The Great Green Park Gatsby Party on Saturday evening, April 15. The event will feature five course menu and wines from Robert Baile Vineyards.
According to Lorry Mulhern, Green Park Inn general manager, the hotel occasionally likes to put on themed events and said the 1925 novel The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald was chosen for multiple reasons.
“During the period The Great Gatsby was set in, the Green Park Inn was a hub of the social community in this area,” Mulhern said, adding with a laugh that who knows what prohibition-era activities had taken place there.
Mulhern also noted that the theme was chosen because the first day of the Wine and Food Festival, April 10, is also the 88th anniversary of the date The Great Gatsby was originally published.
The event will kick off at 7 p.m. with a “Speakeasy Hour.” Attendees are encouraged to wear Roaring Twenties-themed apparel and all who register are given a password to gain entry. The “Speakeasy Hour” will feature classic cocktails of the time period and passed hors d’oeurves suitable to the times.
Following the cocktail hour, three courses will be featured and paired with Robert Baile Vinyards wines. Desert will be English Trifle paired with various ports. To see the full menu, click here.
Mulhern said Robert Baile Vineyards, based in Napa, Calif., was appropriate for the theme of the party because the vineyard because the Baile family had an interesting way of selling their wines around the time of Prohibition. In addition to running a farm and selling eggs, a young Aldo Baile discovered in the 1930s that he could make some money selling a homemade wine.
A teenaged Baile began discreetly selling his homemade wine to a few wine-loving Napans. Because his rural home phone was a “party line” frequented by nosy eavesdroppers, he used a code name whereby his customers could order wine without the risk of revealing his secret operation. Thus “Black Chicken” was born – the nickname for a jug of homemade wine from his barrels hidden in the barn.
At The Great Green Park Gatsby Party, the Biale Black Chicken Zinfandel, Biale Pollo Bianco Sauvignon Blanc and Biale Party Line Zinfandel will be featured.
Tickets to the event are $60 and as with every themed event the Green Park Inn puts on it will sell out fast. Mulhern said there are about 80 or so spaces available for the event.
For more information, visit greenparkinn.com/GreatGatsby.