It will be day of “foolish pleasure” on Sunday, April 1 from noon to 5 p.m. when the second annual Spring Fever Wine and Food Tasting event is held by the Garden State Wine Growers Association (GSWGA) at the elegant Branches in West Long Branch, presented by the Asbury Park Press, In Jersey and The Breeze 107.1.

This year, New Jersey’s first wine tasting event of the season will offer a sampling of more than 250 award winning New Jersey wines from 24 wineries and gourmet foods in an award-winning setting noted regionally for its elegance and attention to detail.

Admission is $25 per person at the door and includes valet parking and a souvenir wine glass. Attendees will be able to purchase wine by the bottle and case. Advance tickets are also available for $20 by going online at www.newjerseywines.com.  All of the wines available for sampling have been locally produced and feature a number of gold, silver and bronze award winning vintages from major national competitions including the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, The Los Angeles County Fair Wine Competition, the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition and the Beverage Testing Institute Wine Challenge.

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The GSWGA, which represents 34 vineyards from all sections of the state, annually hosts a Labor Day weekend outdoor festival in Monmouth County at Allaire State Park in Farmingdale. Now, those wineries will be gathered together to sample their award-winning product at the state’s only indoor wine festival of Garden State wines.

“There will be something for everyone,” notes Ollie Tomasello, chairman of the Garden State Wine Growers Association and owner of Plagido’s Winery in Hammonton.  “And there will be a number of new releases making their debut at Spring Fever as well,” he adds.

The Spring Fever event also comes exactly one month prior to the new law allowing the direct shipping of wine to consumer homes in New Jersey takes effect on May 1. Thus, attendees will not only have the chance to sample and purchase wine at Branches, but will be able to know they can now purchase wines directly from these establishments in the near future.

Winemakers will be offering a broad palette of wines from dry Bordeaux style with easily recognizable names as well as blends, to more fruity choices. Winemakers will also be offering up several fruit wines, including those made from locally farmed blueberries and cranberries and that have won international awards.

To purchase tickets in advance, visit http://www.newjerseywines.com/spring-fever-2012.html. For more information on the Garden State Wine Growers Association, visit www.newjerseywines.com.