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Sipping and savoring Santa Rosa: A downtown wine adventure

in Drinks

Wine abides in downtown Santa Rosa

We’ve been chatting about things for a little over a year now – and by chatting, I mean I’ve been throwing my opinion and taco recommendations out to the world, and that’s about the entirety of it. Speaking of opinions… I have something I gotta admit, now that we’ve known each other for awhile… I live in Wine Country, but I don’t like wine. I don’t NOT drink it if it’s offered, but it’s not my deal. I could never have another glass of wine, ever, and I’d be OK with that. HOWEVER, the theme for this month is Sonoma County wines, and if there’s anything I DO like, it’s writing about stuff, downtown Santa Rosa, and Sonoma County. So here we go!

Continue Reading on the Sonoma County Gazette

Sonoma County vineyards named among 150 to visit before you die

in Food

One of California’s oldest pinot noir vineyards sits on Santa Rosa’s van der Kamp Vineyard — a tiny 25-acre vineyard on the north-face bench of Sonoma Mountain.

Indigenous tribes believe the world began right on top of that mountain.

Whether that’s true or not, one thing is for certain — great wine begins there.

For those reasons, the Santa Rosa vineyard is among over 100 featured in “150 Vineyards You Need to Visit Before You Die,” published in December 2022, by Shana Clarke.

Among other Sonoma County vineyards that made it into the book for their uniqueness-factor were Hirsch Vineyards in Healdsburg, Jordan Vineyard and Winery in Healdsburg, and Sonoma’s Bedrock Vineyard and Bedrock Wine Co.

Continue Reading on The Press Democrat

North Coast Wine Challenge set for April 4-5

in Community/Drinks

The Press Democrat will host its 11th annual North Coast Wine Challenge on April 4 and 5 at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds, with more than two dozen judges, including sommeliers, wine writers and other industry experts, evaluating roughly 1,000 wines made in the North Bay.

The winning wines, including the best white, red, rosé, dessert and sparkling wines and the overall winner, will be announced at approximately 10:30 a.m. on April 5 on The Press Democrat’s Facebook page (facebook.com/pressdemocrat).

Continue Reading on The Press Democrat

51 Vineyard Employees Honored as Sonoma County’s Best

in News

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (February 27, 2023) – News was being delivered throughout the day at the newly named Fundación de la Voz de los Viñedos’ 5th annual Vineyard Employee Recognition Celebration. Acknowledged as one of the most innovative and prestigious awards in the winegrape industry, the Employee Recognition award salutes the accomplishments, talent and leadership of vineyard employees who contribute greatly to making Sonoma County a world-renowned wine region and sustainability leader. This year’s event was held at Saralee and Richard’s Barn at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds in front 380 people including vineyard employees, their families, grape growers and community leaders.

Continue Reading on the Wine Industry Advisor

Demand for this white wine grape has some Napa, Sonoma vintners eyeing wider North Coast sourcing

in Business/Community/Drinks

Consumers’ thirst for sauvignon blanc are causing some vintners in Napa and Sonoma counties to look elsewhere in the North Coast appellation for high-quality fruit.

In Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley, Ferrari-Carano Winery released its first wines in 1987, a fumé blanc and a chardonnay. Fumé blanc is a marketing name for sauvignon blanc coined by the late wine pioneer Robert Mondavi in the late 1960s.

As recently as the 2019 vintage, Ferrari-Carano’s fumé blanc had been labeled with a North Coast appellation, according to the company. By federal law, at least 85% of the grapes have to be grown in an approved American Viticultural Area. The North Coast AVA includes all or substantial portions of Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, Lake and Marin counties plus a sliver of western Solano County.

But after Foley Family Wines acquired the winery in August 2020, the Santa Rosa-based company moved sourcing for Ferrari-Carano fumé blanc back to Sonoma County for the 2020 vintage, according to Shawn Schiffer, Foley president.

Continue Reading on The Press Democrat

20 Great Places to Drink Wine in Sonoma County, California

in Drinks

As a San Francisco resident, I’m lucky enough to live within driving distance of many incredible wine-growing regions. But when I want to spend a day (or even weekend) tasting wine among the vines, more often than not I head to Sonoma County’s wine country. The 1,575-square-mile county is home to world-renowned wine and Michelin-starred restaurants, yet its laid-back vibe is perfect for ambling along a dirt road flanked by farms or cruising down a windy, redwood-lined highway as you drive to your next tasting.

Compared to neighboring Napa Valley, Sonoma wine country is varied, expansive, and spread out, with 18 distinct AVAs and dozens of detour-worthy small towns (including Healdsburg, Sebastopol, Guerneville, Glen Ellen, and Sonoma) within its bounds. This range is part of the fun: At a single winery, you might sample a pinot noir grown along the region’s foggy coast, followed by a robust zinfandel from further inland. But it also means you’ll want to pay attention to location if you plan to schedule more than one tasting—which we highly recommend you do.

Whether you want to taste some of the region’s best wines guided by an experienced sommelier or simply open a bottle and picnic among the vineyards, these are 20 of our favorite places to drink wine in Sonoma County.

Continue Reading on AFAR

Santa Rosa Food and Wine Shop Miracle Plum Closing after 4 Years

in Business

Miracle Plum was never just a gourmet pantry, wine shop and place to pick up adorable housewares in Santa Rosa’s Railroad Square. It was owners Sallie Miller and Gwen Gunheim’s brick-and-mortar love letter to Sonoma County food and wine.

But after four years of business struggles, the duo is calling it quits and will officially close the shop Jan. 1. Miracle Plum is just one of more than a dozen restaurant and retail food spaces that have closed in 2022.

“The last four and a half years have been the full range of experiences. We have had the highest highs and the lowest lows. When we initially delayed our opening because of the 2017 fires, we knew we were signing up for uncertainty, but we had no idea just how uncertain things would get,” said a press release announcing the closure.

Continue Reading on Sonoma Magazine

Sonoma County stalls winery ordinance update again

in Food

Sonoma County supervisors stalled a long anticipated update on the county’s winery ordinance late October. Voting 4-1, with First District Supervisor Susan Gorin dissenting, the board sent the updates back to staff for additional work and revisions. The update had been approved by the county’s Planning Commission.

The ordinance would have established new standards for winery events including parking requirements, food service, event coordination, traffic management and noise standards to address the impact of winery visitor-serving uses on agricultural land. New and modified use permits would have been subject to the new standards, while existing permits would not be impacted.

Continue Reading on Sonoma County Gazette

BevZero and Summerland Form Strategic Partnership to Offer White Label Non-Alcoholic Wines

in Business

Santa Rosa, California–(Newsfile Corp. – November 15, 2022) – Beverage industry leaders BevZero and Summerland Wine Brands announced a strategic partnership to bring non-alcoholic wines to market. BevZero’s expertise in NA wine development and dealcoholization technology in collaboration with Summerland’s winemaker craftsmanship, custom label design and production capabilities, and extensive industry relationships combine to produce high-quality private label NA wines to fulfill the growing demand in the market.

The global non-alcoholic wine segment has been experiencing significant growth of over 20% YOY primarily driven by increased interest in health and wellness products that support mindful, consumption-conscious lifestyles while affording guilt-free indulgence. This partnership provides a comprehensive solution for customers to be at the forefront of this burgeoning category, offering incremental revenue and growth potential without the upfront time or capital investment.

Continue Reading on Northern News

Sonoma Based Vineyard Writing Residency Program Opens 10th Season

in Food

Five Sonoma County wineries—Moshin Vineyards, Keller Estate, DeLoach Vineyards, Jordan Winery, and West Wines— will host writers for Writing Between the Vines writing retreat program in 2023.

Now in it’s 10th year, Writing Between the Vines partners with wineries to host writers in residencies of up to one week in length. Participating wineries become part of a professionally managed artist-in-residence program that awards writing retreats to qualified applicants. Over the years the program has received great support and generosity from the community starting with Moshin Vineyards, a champion of the program from the beginning and host for the past nine years. Keller Estate has participated for three seasons.

Continue Reading on Wine Industry Advisor

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