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By Hadas Kuznits

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The 11th annual Philadelphia Wine Festival takes place on Saturday, May 5th.

The event will take place at Lincoln Financial Field, at the South Philadelphia sports complex.  Joe Conti, CEO of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, says this is a great year for the festival in terms of wine quality.

“Some great vintages in 2009 and 2010,” he notes.  “In Europe, Bordeaux in particular and Burgundy.  California, of course, is always strong.  We have more champagne producers than ever before.”

But he thinks the best part about the event will be the chance to meet the growers in person.

“We have 170 at a minimum — anywhere from 175 to 200 different wineries will be represented,” he tells KYW Newsradio.

And Conti says bottles of wine costing upwards of $1,000 will be available for tasting.  What makes some wines so expensive?

“The quality of the grapes, usually the production — the smaller the area of the vineyard, the less yield, so it’s really the combination of the soil (and) the size or yield, if you will.  They’re the main influences on price.”

Hear or download Hadas Kuznits’ full interview with Joe Conti and David Lipson in this CBS Philly podcast (runs 11:47)…

Conti says there will also be experts available to answer all your wine-related questions.

“We will have our Wine and Spirits Advisory Council there,” he says.  “They will have a table, so if you don’t know some things about wine and would like to know, it’s a wonderful opportunity to ask questions and to learn.”

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

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