When the Vino Express rolls into town for the start of the Orange Wine Festival on Friday it will bring with it profits that extend beyond the wine industry.
With 31 people booked to make the train trip from Sydney for a long weekend sampling some of the festival’s highlights, and a further 40 locked in for the same itinerary on the festivals’ final weekend, several hospitality venues will be kept busy hosting them.
Nile Street Cafe owner Frank Mohun said catering for the group’s brunch on Sunday would have the flow-on effect of bringing patrons at his tables in the future.
Everyone who has the group should feel really lucky, they come with the intention of buying,Julie Dolle
“If we put on a good breakfast and do the right thing they’ll go home talking about the whole experience,” he said.
Having had the Vino Express’s ticket holders stop by last year, Orange Mountain Wine owner Julie Dolle said the economic boost was “fantastic”.
“They want to see what’s around and they want to take something home,” she said.
“Everyone who has the group should feel really lucky, they come with the intention of buying.”
Mrs Dolle said she believed winemakers were able to sell more wine when they had a chance to share their story with the out-of-towners.
This year, that chance will be afforded to a couple of different producers, with Tamburlaine Organic Wines, Nashdale Lane Wines and Mortimers Wines among the wineries set to host the train travellers.
The financial benefits of the Vino Express aren’t limited to the food and wine industries, with the 71 ticket holders booked to stay at the Mercure Templers Mill Hotel, which is almost at capacity for the weekend.
Organisers estimated up to 15,000 people attended wine events at previous editions of the festival, spending somewhere in the region of $1.65 million while in town in 2016.
A survey of attendees revealed that 40 per cent of festival-goers were out-of-town visitors, with the average person staying at least two nights and attending more than two events.
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