Christine and Charles Mathers, of Delaware, sample wine at the Great Tastes of Tysons this weekend.
Photo by Reena Singh.
Great Tastes of Tysons kicked off what will be a streak of inaugural festivals in the urban center.
The two-day food and wine fest created by Tysons Partnership brought out local and national restaurants, wineries and breweries for visitors to sample as they mingled through the gauntlet of vendors.
“This is a real demonstration of the promise of Tysons and Tysons being a place of community, life and vitality.”
-- Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Sharon Bulova
Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Sharon Bulova came to the event for another inaugural event as well - the ribbon-cutting for the Lerner Town Square.
“This is a real demonstration of the promise of Tysons and Tysons being a place of community, life and vitality,” she said. “This festival and everything else we see around us is a result of a highly successful partnership between the corporate community, the civic community and the residential community.”
Bob Tanenbaum, a principal at Lerner Enterprises, represented the corporate community that is taking on a role to increase community participation in the urban center. Lerner Enterprises is hosting most of the summer’s events on its 10-acre lot across the street from Tysons Galleria.
“Lerner is proud to help develop a community spirit and improve the quality of life in Tysons,” Tanenbaum said in a statement. “We are a founding member of Tysons Partnership, and we are committed to the continued transformation of this exciting region.”
Melissa Alexander, of Williamsburg, with Vacation Village Resorts took advantage of the slower hours when the festival just opened to sample gourmet steak and mashed potatoes from the O’Malley Pub booth next to hers.
“Actually, after trying that, we’re going to eat there tonight,” said Alexander.
She said she signed up to be a vendor for the event because she has had a good relationship with businesses in Tysons Corners.
“It’s all about shop local, resort local,” she said. “You couldn’t have asked for better weather. It can only get better from here.”
In addition to the booths, food trucks - and a Cupcake Winery truck - could be found parked throughout the festival grounds. Early visitors got to visit any vendor of their choosing without having to wait in line.
Christine and Charles Mathers came to the event all the way from Bear, Del., after Charles read about it online while he was still stationed in Afghanistan.
“So far, everything has been very good,” said Christine, holding a wine glass sampler. “We’ve gone to about five different booths so far. I like wine, and he likes beer.”
Lauren London, with Psychic Readings by Lauren, is a Rockville-based vendor who has done other events in Tysons. When her family received a call from Tysons Partnership, they jumped at the chance to be a part of the inaugural event.
“We were born gifted,” said London. “My mom has been a spiritual advisor for 30 years and I’ve been doing this since I was 7.”