After five years of putting the party into pinot noir, entrepreneur Dan Sims is going global. He launches his Pinot Palooza event in Singapore next month, with plans to expand into Hong Kong and Tokyo in 2018, and ultimately the US.
Dan is a former sommelier whose CV includes Taxi Dining Room and Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen. He launched Pinot Palooza at Melbourne’s Ormond Hall in 2012 as an antidote to what he saw as stuffy wine events, centred around “a bunch of old white men telling people what they don’t know about wine”.
Dan reasoned that people wanted to learn about wine in the same way they drink it – in a fun atmosphere with music and good food.
He was on to something. That first year, 350 people turned up to taste pinots from 77 producers. The next year he expanded into Sydney and Brisbane. In 2017, he anticipates 16,000 people will join the fun in nine cities across Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, which will host an even in late November.
But first, Pinot Palooza will take over Melbourne’s Royal Exhibition Building on Saturday, October 7, with 240 pinots to taste from 80 producers, as well as food from SPQR Pizzeria, Epocha, and Maker & Monger, and DJ music sets.
“It’s a fun day out with great tunes and amazing food,” Dan says. “We’ve done the hard work and curated an amazing list of pinot noir from Australia and NZ. In terms of the range of styles, you’d be hard pressed to find anything similar in the world.”
- Saturday, October 7
- Royal Exhibition Building, 9 Nicholson, Street Carlton.
- Entry: $65 (includes a Plumm glass).