Posts Tagged ‘Heart of Sonoma Valley’

Escape House Visitors this Fri/Sat at Heart of Sonoma Valley Open House. AND TWO Drawings!

It’s Holiday Time in Sonoma County!

When you are lucky enough to live in a place where it seems every 4th person is a chef, winemaker cheesemaker, or some other artisan; it’s an extra special pleasure this time of year when everyone is busy preparing things to enjoy the Holiday festivities.

This Friday and Saturday is the 27th Annual Heart of Sonoma Valley Open House.  For those not familiar with the ‘Heart of Sonoma Valley’ its an organization that represents 24 Wineries of Sonoma Valley, located in Glen Ellen and Kenwood, generally on, or close to, Highway 12.

Each Winery will offer special pourings, nibbles, wine sales, artisan wares for sale and more. You can peruse here for a complete list. New to the 2010 Holiday Open House are street food vendors. They will be located throughout the valley including Harvey’s Donuts, A Brewed Awakening, Street Eatz, Fork, Taste of Gyro, Chicago Style Hot Dogs, and Buon Gusto offering a variety of affordable eats!

Participating Wineries include: Audelssa Estate Winery, Benziger Family Winery, Chateau St. Jean, Deerfield Ranch Winery, Enkidu Wines, Eric Ross Winery, Family Wineries, Imagery Estate Winery, Kaz Vineyards & Winery, Kenwood Vineyards, Kunde Family Estate, Landmark Vineyards, Ledson Winery & Vineyards, Little Vineyards, Loxton Cellars, Mayo Family Winery, Muscardini Cellars/Ty Caton Vineyards, Paradise Ridge Winery, St. Francis Winery, VJB Vineyards & Cellars, Valley of the Moon Winery, Wellington Vineyards.

Tickets are $40 in advance, and available here.

TWO Contests this Week

Free Tickets Trivia Drawing

Tomorrow night (Tuesday Nov 23rd) we will draw from the successful entries to the 3 Trivia questions below, for a pair of tickets to the event. Simply post your answers on the blog site, with contact info. Entries won’t be published, so that answers can’t be copied. Entries close at 7 p.m. tomorrow night!

All Answers can be found on the Open House Program.

  1. What Winery (Page 1) is at the Intersection of Hwy 12 and Adobe Canyon Road?
  2. Where can you taste Harvey’s Gourmet Donuts? (highly recommended, fyi.)
  3. What Winery is having the Owner/Winemaker sign bottles? (hint begins with an ‘E’.) (Great gift idea!)

Wine Country Package

First, WineCountry.com has teamed up with Heart of Sonoma Valley with a special incentive: Purchase tickets by Wednesday November 24th and be automatically entered to win a Wine Country Getaway Package! Includes; a one-night stay at the Landmark Vineyards Cottage, an Estate Tasting at VJB Vineyards & Cellars, a magnum signed by a winemaker from Family Wineries, a Wine Blending session at Kaz Vineyards and the two bottles of wine you blended, a Heart of Sonoma Valley 6-bottle wine tote, and two tickets to the 2011 Holiday Open House.

Don’t forget the Simple Hedonisms 4 Suggestions for Wine Events:

Plan. – take a few minutes to peruse the page of offerings. Visit old faves, work in some new ones.

  • Buy. Support these artisans with your purchases. Many will have special sales. If you are have flown in, this is an especially great time to stock up and ship these gems you may not be able to find at home. For visitors, this is also a good time to consider the Wine Club, to keep a regular supply of your favorite winery releases coming.
  • Taste Responsibly. Don’t hesitate to dump wine you don’t want, use a spit cup, and consume plenty of food and water.
  • Have Fun! Remember if it gets busy; A ‘bad’ day in Wine Country (I think this actually doesn’t exist) is always better than a good day at work.

Simple Hedonisms will be out and about on Black Friday (YOU can have the shopping thanks!) so follow on Twitter and Facebook for live event broadcasts and photos.

Here is wishing you the very best of ‘Simple Hedonism’s’, family, friends, food, and wine, over this holiday week.

Cheers!!!

Don’t Miss! Savor Sonoma Event – Winery Sales Promotions

So how do you take a great weekend event in the Heart of Sonoma Valley, enjoying food, wine, music, and art at the 20th Annual  Savor Sonoma Food and Wine Experience (22 wineries in the historic Glen Ellen and Kenwood region) and make it better?

Throw in barrel tasting, future sales, and great sales promotions on existing inventory, thats how! Try great wines, and save money on wine you can take home today, as well as new releases later this year. Print this out and take it along!

St. Francis Winery & Vineyards

  • 2004 Case Sale: Cases of remaining 2004 wines will be sold at 40% off to the public, 50% off to Club members. Mix and match too.
  • Free St. Francis t-shirt with $75 wine purchase
  • Mini Cheesesteak Sandwiches and Triple Chocolate Brownies!
  • A representative from Stella & Dot Jewelry will be here to showcase their latest line

Eric Ross Winery

  • Will be selling futures on the Russian River 2009 Saralee Pinot Noir, a very nice wine similar in complexity to the 2008 vintage. Also a brand new wine  –  2009 Tempranillo with a splash (5%) of Graciano making this a beautiful rich complex wine of Spanish origins. We are especially excited about how this one came out of the cellar which will be released in October.
  • Eric Ross only offers discounts to wine club members and in continuing support of them the only discount we offer is 20% to them. Should anyone like to join the wine club this weekend the discount will apply to all wine purchases.

Mayo Family Winery

Future Sales: 25% discount on 6 or more bottles (mix and match any futures):
  • 2008 Pinot Noir, Laurel Hill Vineyard, Sonoma Valley, Estate Bottled $302008 Grenache, Judge Family Vineyard, Sonoma Valley $352008 Zinfandel, Ricci Vineyard, Russian River Valley, Old Vines $402008 Cabernet Sauvignon, Delaney Family Vineyard, Sonoma County $40
Wine Sales: 20% off 2-5 Bottles, 40% off 6 or more (mix and match):
  • 2007 Pinot Gris, Balletto Vineyard, Sonoma Coast $25
  • 2007 Viognier, Saralee’s Vineyard, Russian River Valley, $35
  • 2006 Syrah, Ostrander Vineyard, Sonoma Valley, $35
  • 2005 Meritage, Rancho Salinas Vineyard, Sonoma Valley $40

Kunde Family Estate

  • Enjoy Barrel tasting in the aging caves of the  2010 Reserve Chardonnay and Rhone blend 2008 Vallee de la Lune
Super Sale wines too– this weekend only!
  • 2007 Chardonnay – C. S. Ridge $96/case
  • 2005 Merlot   $72/ case
  • 2006 Sangiovese $120/case

VJB Vineyards & Cellars

  • VJB Vineyards and Cellars will be barrel sampling from the 08 & 09 vintage and will be offering 30-35% discounts on case purchases of both futures and on case purchases of current release bottled wines.
  • Join owner & executive chef Maria Belmonte cooking live and will be selling her homemade sauces & biscotti’s this weekend!

Chateau St. Jean

The theme this year is Mardi Gras and GatorBeat will be performing on Saturday.

Barrel Samples, Future Sales:

  • Offering 3 barrel samples  this year: 2009 Chardonnay Cold Creek.  2009 Pinot Noir So Co,  2007 Cabernet Sauv. Cinq Cépages.
  • Futures will be available at the following case prices: Chard = $195; Pinot = $135 and Cinq = $555; all 3 of them are super “crazy” deals.

Finished Wine Promotion: Chateau St. Jean is offering a 4 pack of wines, normally $96, on sales for $60. The 4 pack includes:

  • 2007 Pinot Blanc (perennial favorite).  2007 Chardonnay Durell (crème brulee in a glass).  2007 Pinot Noir So Co (burgundian delight) a 2006 Cabernet Sauv. So Co. (chocolate covered cherries aromas) .

“Laissez les bons temps rouler!”

Enkidu Wine

Join Enkidu in their new one year anniversary of their tasting room.  They are  pouring eight wines this weekend, including our new release (and first) Sangiovese.

Enkidu is  are offering 15% off any wine purchase for 4 – 11 bottles and 20% off for 12 bottles or more, this weekend only.

Landmark Vineyards

Special event discount:

  • 10% off 3 Bottles, 15% off 6 Bottles, 20% off 12 Bottles
  • Barrel Tasting Pack: Overlook Chardonnay $28; Grand Detour Pinot Noir $40; Grenache $25. Buy all three for $80 (save $13)

If you haven’t already bought tickets, they are still available for purchase at the door of participating wineries. Click the link to download the full map and program.

As always for events I advise: (1) make a plan so you taste, try what you want. (2) Drink responsibly – its wine tasting. If you are a serious taster/buyer, your palette is changed after only a few pours. Bring your own spit cup, and use dump buckets. (3) Wineries are businesses, often small ones, not charities. They survive on sales, so if you like their wines, buy some. If you REALLY like their wines, consider joining the wine club. Additional suggestions for events are in previous articles, including this one.

We will be out and about Sunday, if you see us, say hi!

Cheers!

Question of the Week: “Why Are There Roses at Each Row of Grapevines?”

This week the  Heart of Sonoma Valley Association, sponsored  “Question of the Week”, the winner receiving  a pair of tickets to the  Savor Sonoma event. (I can’t wait!)

To be eligible to win you had to post a question on their Facebook Fan site. (Which I recommend for following event updates, etc.)

Our winner is Jason Klafter. Jason is an avid lover of Sonoma County and their wines.  Sonoma County is where I first started experimenting with wine about 5-6 years ago. I couldn’t acquire a taste for it at first and now I love it! I am a red wine fan and would say my favorite type of wine is an old vine Zin and his wife is a huge white wine fan. For fun we like to go check out different wineries in Sonoma County and find ourselves changing wine clubs ever year or so so we can get a good taste of each winery.

Jason’s selected “Question of the Day” asked:

Why are there flowers/roses at the beginning/end of each row of grapevines?

Excellent question Jason.

First, it stems from tradition, started in the  wine regions of France. The philosophy was that roses were more susceptible to disease and insects than grapevines, and more visibly affected, thus making them like a miner’s canary, or an early warning system.

More specfically, Roses and grapevines are both susceptible to a fungus called powdery mildew. If a grapegrower noticed that the roses had powdery mildew, they knew it was immediately time to spray sulfur on the grapes to prevent them from getting the same disease. It was believed roses also warn of other diseases and growing problems before they affect the grapevines, and they serve as a habitat for some beneficial insects that eat other undesirable insects.

They certainly aren’t bad to look at either, and one could even match the color of the rose to the grape, red or white.

I have read several rebuttals to this theory, that believe that if this theory was true, then the roses would be like advertising “come here for a treat” to bugs, drawing in bugs that might normally have trundled along towards a flower garden. Sharpshooters,  a known threat to vineyards,  and who purportedly like roses.

Either way, substantial improvements in viticulture, soil and pest management, and other practices have far exceeded this, but then wine is about beauty and enjoyment, so roses sometimes remain.

I hope to see many of you at the event this weekend, or at my Sonoma Wine Meetup in Downtown Sonoma – 80-100 people wine industry, consumers.

For more details on the event, check out the article from earlier this week. Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for a special article on featured sales promotions by wineries – cheers!

March 20-21st – Enjoy the Heart of Sonoma Valley “Savor Sonoma” – Enter to Win Tickets

Never a dull moment here in Wine Country, coming off the heels of 2 weekends of The Wine Road’s Barrel Tasting, we change to another part of Sonoma County, and a ‘cozier’ event, hosted by the Heart of Sonoma Valley Association. The 20th Annual  Savor Sonoma Food and Wine Experience features 22 wineries in the historic Glen Ellen and Kenwood regions.

This event is fun and ‘savory’ – all participating wineries are offering food and wine pairings. In addition many are offering barrel samples, selling futures, and featuring live music and local artists. The full program is available here; as always I encourage attendees to print it out, and make a mini-plan, especially if you only plan one day.

Glen Ellen and Kenwood are easily accessible from downtown Sonoma, Santa Rosa, Carneros and Napa – why not enjoy the scenery, leisurely drive, and spend one day (or both) this weekend enjoying  food, wine, art and music, with wineries large and small, new and historic.

Participating Wineries Include:
Audelssa Estate Winery, Benziger Family Winery, Chateau St. Jean, Deerfield Ranch Winery, Enkidu Wines, Eric Ross Winery, Family Wineries of Kenwood, Imagery Estate Winery, Kenwood Vineyards, Kunde Family Estate, Landmark Vineyards, Ledson Winery & Vineyards, Little Vineyards, Loxton Cellars, Mayo Family Winery, Muscardini Cellars, Paradise Ridge Winery, St. Francis Winery, Ty Caton Vineyards, VJB Vineyards & Cellars, Valley of the Moon Winery and Wellington Vineyards.

Featured Musicians include:

  • Laurent Fourgo’s Trio (Jazz) at Landmark Vineyards
  • Josh Little & his Trio (Jazz) at Little Vineyards
  • Seth Walker (Blues) at Loxton Cellars
  • The Sharks (Saturday) & The Corkpullers (Sunday) at Imagery Estate Winery
  • Sparky Thorne at Benziger Family Winery
  • The Don Giovannis (6-piece Italian Band) at VJB Vineyards & Cellars
  • John Shearer (Acoustic Guitar) at Valley of the Moon Winery.

Featured Artists include:

  • Stella and Dot Jewelry at St. Francis Winery & Vineyards
  • Leslee Maggiora Jewelry at Eric Ross Winery
  • Bella Barrels (Barrel Stave Merchandise) at Valley of the Moon Winery
  • Zaza Gallery (Stretched Canvas Photography) at Valley of the Moon Winer
  • Belgique Truffle Gateaux (Baked Truffles) at Valley of the Moon Winery
  • Twisted Sister (Local Handmade Jewelry) at Valley of the Moon Winery
  • San Tasti (a new drink to relieve palate fatigue) at Valley of the Moon Winery.

Enter “Question of the Week” to Win 2 Tickets, or Merchandise

Wednesday night we will be drawing for a pair of free tickets. To enter, go to the Heart of Sonoma Valley Facebook Fan page, scroll down to the Question of the Week posting, and submit your question.  Wednesday night will draw a winner, and answer the question.

I can’t wait to attend this event! Look for a 1-2 more posts this week, including a special article end of week featuring special winery sales incentives. Until then this recent article on barrel tasting may help as well!

Barrel Tasting Insights – What am I Tasting & Do I Get Splinters? What should I buy?

Wine, food, music, art, Sonoma Valley, for only $55 for 2 days – and you don’t have tickets why? Available online through Wednesday, grab some, they have sold out before!

cheers!

p.s. See some of you at the Friday night Sonoma Wine Meetup in Downtown Sonoma – 75+ wine industry, consumers. Putting the social in Social Networking!


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