Harvest season is in full swing in Sonoma Valley, and many wineries
are celebrating by hosting events and release parties for their new wines. It’s an exciting time to be in Sonoma Valley, so we’d like to give you some front row seats to all the action. Here’s what’s happening throughout Sonoma Valley right now.
Bocce, Lobster, and Landmark
101 Adobe Canyon Rd
Kenwood, CA 95452
: 4.5 stars, 74 reviews
The team at Landmark Vineyards is hard at work harvesting grapes, and they’re showcasing their harvest process on social media. The next couple weeks will be busy for the Landmark team—they recently shared photos on Instagram of their booth at the Los Angeles Food Festival, and also have some harvest events coming up in the next month, starting with the Landmark Vineyards BBQ at Hop Kiln Estate on September 3, and the Lobster Festival on September 30. On October 1, they’re hosting their main event of the season: a Harvest Festival featuring newly released wines, paired with dishes from local vendors. Be sure to check it out!
After doing a tasting, stick around for a game of bocce ball. There’s a court set up next to Landmark’s beautiful patio.
Bountiful Vines at Ledson
7335 Sonoma Hwy
Kenwood, CA 95409
: 4.5 stars, 247 reviews
At the Ledson Winery and Castle, the vines are full of grapes and harvesting is underway. If you’re a car aficionado, don’t miss Porsches at the Castle: this event will be held at Ledson Castle on September 18, and will feature vintage Porches lining the driveway. If you’re more of a Corvette fan, head to Ledson on October 1, when Corvettes at the Castle takes place. After the events, stop into the tasting room to sample Ledson’s wines.
If you’re hungry after your wine tasting, stop by the Ledson Market and pick up a delicious Harvest Blue sandwich, made with roast beef and homemade blue cheese.
Zins and BBQ at St. Francis
St. Francis Winery
100 N Pythian Rd
Santa Rosa, CA 95409
: 4.5 stars, 248 reviews
St. Francis Winery is gearing up for a busy harvest season full of fun events. They recently hosted a lobster feed for their wine club, and they just had their Cabernet Sauvignon pre-release party. Coming up on October 2, St. Francis will hold the annual Blessing of the Animals; then, on October 22, they’ll host their annual Zinfandel and Harvest BBQ. This can’t-miss event includes mouthwatering barbeque dishes paired with delicious, newly released Zinfandels, and has become a yearly favorite.
Reserve a spot at one of St. Francis Winery’s highly rated wine and food pairing dinners. The menu changes monthly, allowing for a new experience with each visit.
Hard at Work at Kenwood
9592 Sonoma Hwy
Kenwood, CA 95452
: 4.5 stars, 63 reviews
Kenwood Vineyard’s Instagram is full of photos and videos of their bountiful harvest, including bins full of Sauvignon Blanc grapes, as well as shots of the crew, hard at work, picking grapes for their red wines, including the Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel. If you want to see the harvesting process up-close, head over to Kenwood Vineyards soon, and take part in a tour and a tasting.
Be sure to try some wines from the Jack London line. They’re made from grapes grown in Jack London State Park: particularly unique, as Kenwood is the only winery allowed to harvest grapes from this state park.
Relax at Keller Estate
5875 Lakeville Hwy
Petaluma, CA 94954
: 4.5 stars, 20 reviews
Harvesting has just begun at Keller Estate, so right now is a great time to see the season in full swing. Start off by reserving a spot for a wine tasting, or hit up one of the many events Keller Estate is hosting throughout September. Every Sunday, Keller has a delicious brunch with three courses of local dishes, paired with five flights of Keller’s wines. But, on September 24, Keller Estate will have their Harvest Celebration, featuring vineyard tours, amazing paella and local dishes, and plenty of wine tastings.
Ask for a side of salted popcorn and olive oil with your wine tasting. If you enjoy the olive oil, grab a bottle to take home.
Goofing Off at Imagery
Imagery Estate Winery
14335 Sonoma Hwy
Glen Ellen, CA 95442
: 4.5 stars, 203 reviews
Imagery Estate Winery is showing off their plump, ready-to-be-picked grapes on social media, but if you’d like to see these berries in-person, sign up for a tasting at the bar, or buy a bottles and head out for a picnic on their lawn. Also, don’t miss their special harvest event on September 10, which will feature a classic grape stomp, and a full dinner with Italian fare and newly released wines.
Each of Imagery Winery’s bottles have handcrafted labels made by local artists. To learn more about any of the artists’ work, ask Imagery’s knowledgeable staff.
Limited Edition at Arrowood
14347 Sonoma Hwy
Glen Ellen, CA 95442
: 4.5 stars, 45 reviews
You can see Arrowood’s grapes on the vine during the winery’s signature tasting, which includes four classic varieties. There’s also a wine and artisan cheese pairing tasting that allows visitors to taste through limited-edition single vineyard wines that have been paired with local cheeses. Plus, don’t miss Arrowood Winery’s 2012 Reserve Speciale Cabernet release: this event takes place on October 22.
If you’re a Cabernet lover, sign up for Arrowood’s Premium Cabernet tasting, featuring four limited-edition Cabernet Sauvignons from Arrowood’s exclusive collection.
Making Memories at Chateau St. Jean
Chateau St. Jean
8555 Sonoma Hwy
Kenwood, CA 95452
: 4.5 stars, 261 reviews
Chateau St. Jean is just wrapping up their harvest, and now they’re turning their attention to their roster of September events. On September 18, Chateau St. Jean will host a concert with local band Mustache Harbor: this fun concert will take place on Chateau St. Jean’s lawn, and will feature food and wine, available for purchase. Then, on October 1, the main event of the season takes place: the Cinq Cepages Grand Tasting. At this event, the 2013 Cinq Cepages will be released, and there will be accompanied by curated dishes from local chefs.
The Cinq Cepages, a blend of five varieties, is a perennial favorite from Chateau St. Jean (their ‘97 was rated the No. 1 by Wine Spectator, and quality has remained high over the years). Be sure to get a bottle to take home with you!
Harvest season in Sonoma County is full of activity, from harvest festivals to vineyard tours. If your travels take you to Sonoma County this harvest season, do yourself a favor and stop by any of the above to experience the energy up-close.