I can't remember exactly when it was that Professor Sakkie Pretorius, head of the Australian Wine Research Institute in Adelaide, first approached me about being the keynote speaker at the eighth International Cool Climate Symposium in Tasmania early next year. I think it was just as the Bronze Age was drawing to a close…
What I do know is that I have had the dates 31 Jan - 4 Feb 2012 in a succession of diaries, and now, finally, it's time for participants to register for this week of sustenance for mind and body, focused on viticulture, oenology and, most importantly, great food and wine in a beautiful part of the world - Australia's coolest state. See Wine Tasmania's surely irresistible view above left.
Full-price tickets to the event are AUD$1,205 apiece but those who register on or before 14 October pay AUD$1,095, an Australian dollar being worth very slightly less than an American one. The organisers point out that early registration allows you to:
• Guarantee a workshop seat - workshop places are strictly limited and will be filled on a 'first in, first served' basis
• Avoid peak season - get in early and access the most flexible travel and accommodation options for the peak summer travel period
• Enjoy discounted registration - register on or before 14 October and receive a discount on your registration fee.