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Washington, DC, Food and Wine Galore at the National Harbor Festival

If you find yourself in the Washington, D.C., area this weekend and get a craving for delicious food paired with a stunning array of interesting wines and beers, you should hop in the car and head over to the 2012 National Harbor Wine and Food Festival.

This is the 5th year that the popular event s being held at the National Harbor on the banks of the Potomac River. The festival is open from 1 pm to 6 pm on Saturday and Sunday, though VIP admission is available starting at noon on both days to get a jump on the crowds.

There is nothing like a food and wine festival to give you access to a grand array of tastes and pairings in one place. The National Harbor Festival boasts that it brings together world-renowned chefs, artisanal craftsmen and culinary pioneers under one big tent. Attendees will be able to sample more than 150 different wines, beers and spirits in a feature they are calling All-You-Care-To-Taste. The wines will range from $8.99 to $349—giving you a rare opportunity to decide if a $300 bottle of wine is truly worth all that money. And if wine isn’t your thing, the festival will offer a craft beer tasting Bier Garten, and also a Whiskey and Bourbon Experience tasting lounge, which will include hand-rolled cigar demonstrations.

If you’re such a foodie that you don’t even want to go home between Saturday or Sunday—or if you fear that you might not be able to make it back home—the nearby Gaylord National Resort is offering room and festival packages for $165 for one night (includes a VIP pass to the festival) and $265 for two nights (includes a VIP pass to the festival and an event t-shirt).

There are a variety of options to secure tickets to the festival, starting with a 2-day VIP all-access pass for $185. The cheapest ticket is the general admission for $37 in advance (online) and $45 on-site (it includes access from 1 pm to 6 pm, a souvenir wine glass, unlimited samples and all performances and cooking demonstrations).

Go to for more information and to purchase tickets.

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