Greetings from the spectacular Mendocino coast of California, where the air is clear and the temperature is about 30 degrees cooler than it is only a few miles inland.
During much of the year, this area is shrouded in fog and it can be downright cold. But during the summertime, I can think of no other place I’d rather be.
And if tradition holds true, the weather should be spectacular this September, when the 25th annual Winesong! event is held in an intimate bluff-top setting overlooking the Pacific.
I’ve been fortunate to attend a bunch of Winesongs! through the years, and it never gets old. How could it? The grand tasting event is a three-hour extravaganza featuring more than 100 wine producers from all over California (not to mention Australia, Chile and South Africa), tasty “wine country cuisine” and live music.
It’s a little bit of heaven in a truly idyllic setting.
A barrel tasting of Pinot Noir wines from Mendocino County’s bucolic Anderson Valley kicks off the event on Friday, and Winesong! closes with a three-hour charity auction immediately following Saturday’s grand tasting.
The best part about Winesong! is that you can attend without experiencing even an ounce of guilt. That’s because proceeds benefit a very worthy cause: the Mendocino Coast Hospital Foundation.
To learn more about Winesong! 2009 — scheduled for Sept. 11-12 — call 707-961-4909, or visit winesong.org.
Can’t wait until September for a wine weekend? Then check out the 5th annual Lake County Wine Adventure, to be held due east of Winesong! and north of the Napa Valley on the weekend of July 25-26.
While Winesong! is a walk-around event, the Lake County Wine Adventure is a drive-around festival. More than 20 wineries — several of which do not keep regular retail hours — will open their doors and tap their barrels so guests can get a preview of what will be appearing in bottles within a year or two.
Some wineries also will offer tours, and entertainment will be featured at some of the estates. And the $30 Adventure ticket price includes a logo glass that you can take home.
To learn more about the 2009 Wine Adventure, call 707-350-0700 or go online to lakecountywineries.org.