by Bronte Valk
Whether you’re taking in the performances of Old Strathcona or watching a prairie sunset from a tarp somewhere on Gallagher Hill, Edmonton in the summertime has something for everyone.
While I’m no stranger to laying in the grass at Folk Fest as music fills the river valley, I was eager to try something new. So, when The Wanderer Online approached me with the opportunity to attend the Moët Party Day held at the gorgeous Marriott Courtyard, I jumped at the opportunity – agreeing to temporarily switch out t-shirts and plastic beer cups for fashion-forward dresses and champagne flutes.
Unabashedly bourgeois? Perhaps. But who wouldn’t jump at the opportunity to drink champagne during the day? Better yet, on a balcony with interesting people? The party was hosted by Tastemakers Edmonton – an Edmonton organization on a mission to become Canada’s leading platform for social activities and networking events, to build a community around innovation and creativity.
The atmosphere was equal parts expected and unexpected. I quickly spotted the usual suspects: the guy in the Tom Ford sunglasses never without his scotch and the aspiring Instagram model in Valentino heels – overall, the crowd was predictably beautiful and refined.
What I did not expect, however, was the laid-back atmosphere courtesy of an incredible DJ. When you “hear champagne tasting party” you half-expect to be put to sleep courtesy of some piano arrangement or a light jazz. Instead, the crowd was energized by a fusion of house music that transitioned into hip-hop as the bottles of Moët Ice Imperial – an innovative champagne designed to be served over ice – began hitting the table.
The first sip was crisp but faded into a gentle effervescence with a great deal of sweetness. I could taste notes of apple, grape, and lychee. The ice cut down the sweetness of the champagne, but as it melted, my drink turned into something akin to a Smirnoff cooler, not quite upholding the prestige of the Moët house. A tad bit underwhelming for a $110 bottle of champagne so we ordered Sangria as our next drink.
If I had to extend one piece of advice to Moët and Tastemakers for future events, it would be to address networking – or more specifically- the way the environment didn’t really allow for it. While the music was good, it was too loud and often made conversations difficult. For an event that aimed to encourage networking, I considered this an odd decision.
Ultimately, Moët Party Day 2017 was the perfect mix of cool drinks and hot sun – a fun afternoon spent with old and new friends, catching up on last year’s adventures and planning new ones for the year to come. The view of the river valley alone left everyone inspired and energized and I can’t wait to see what Tastemakers Edmonton organizes next.
Photography courtesy of Tastemakers Edmonton.