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Sonoma County – From Wildflowers to Wineries

Sonoma County – From Wildflowers to Wineries

Springtime in Sonoma County bursts forth with vibrant hues of over 1,000 species of wildflowers and mustard grass creating a Superbloom-like landscape not just in the valleys but also along the coastline. The 2024 Jack London State Historic Park Wildflower Guide “Blooming Now” offers valuable insights into the diverse array of blooms dotting the region. Meanwhile, along the coastline, witness the annual migration of Pacific gray whales spouting water from their blowholes from late winter through spring. Indeed, now is a time of rejuvenation in Sonoma County, inviting all to immerse themselves in nature-inspired experiences as Life Opens Up.
New in Experiences
Seasonal Wine/Food Experience – Ram’s Gate Winery
Ram’s Gate Winery has introduced a new menu for its Seasonal Wine & Food Experience, showcasing ingredients sourced from Sonoma County farms and paired with small-lot wines from their cellar. This communal, multi-course pairing experience, lasting 2 hours, has been curated by General Manager and Winemaker Joe Nielsen and Executive Chef Ruby Oliveros. Each dish on the menu is designed to highlight the nuances of the wines.
West Wines School of Cab – West Wines
School of Cab is West Wines Winery’s informal classroom to educate about Cabernet Sauvignon, the King of Red Wines. Sample highly regarded West Wines Cabernet Sauvignon from separate vintages. Learn how to assess color, aroma, and flavor in a fun and relaxed setting. Tasting includes a cheese and chocolate pairing. April 20 | 10:30 am
Vino and Vinyl’s – Montagne Russe
Montagne Russe, a small winery in Healdsburg, has elevated its wine tasting experience with the grand opening of Vino and Vinyl’s, a record shop located within its tasting room. Guests can now enjoy Montagne Russe’s wine selections while perusing and listening to over 2,000 new and used records, available for trade or purchase.
Taste Destination 128
Travel along the Alexander Valley wine trail and enjoy the offerings of seven premier wineries, showcasing the finest flavors of northern Sonoma County. Each stop along the way presents an assortment of locally sourced artisan cheese and charcuterie spread paired with hand-selected wines. Featured wineries and cheesemakers include deLorimier Winery partnered with Point Reyes Cheese, Pech Merle Winery accompanied by WM Cofield Cheesemakers, Ramazzotti Wines in collaboration with Pennyroyal Farms, Soda Rock Winery featuring Cypress Grove Creamery, and Trentadue Vineyards paired with Valley Ford Cheese. April 6 | 11:00 am
Kunde Family Winery Dog Hike
5th generation winegrower Jordan Kunde serves as your expert guide through the Kunde Estate for seasonal dog hikes. Discover paths that wind from the valley floor in the Valley of the Moon into the majestic Mayacamas Mountain range. Along the way, delve into the sustainable winegrowing and winemaking practices of Kunde Family Winery, gaining insights from grape to glass with your four-legged companion. This moderately strenuous hike, lasting approximately 4 hours, culminates in a Kunde wine tasting paired with a wine country lunch. April 20, June 8, November 2 | 9:00 am
Earth Day at Safari West
Celebrate Earth Day with Safari West as they proudly host 35 conservation organizations. Visitors can immerse themselves in interactive activities, informative displays, and captivating live animal presentations. Earth Day holds special significance at Safari West. Through initiatives like our Earth Day celebrations, Safari West strives to engage the community in meaningful discussions about sustainability and the preservation of biodiversity. April 20 | 10:00 am
Big West Wine Fest
Wine enthusiasts and fans of minimal-intervention wines will gather in Guerneville for the second annual Big West Wine Fest, a celebration of natural wines in Sonoma County. Set in the redwood trees at Solarpunk Farms, a queer-run experimental farm just a mile from downtown Guerneville, this event offers a unique, only one of its kind mix of over 30 local wine producers dedicated to sustainable farming and minimalist winemaking techniques. In addition to sampling a diverse array of wines, attendees will enjoy offerings from local food vendors and enjoy live music, all within a relaxed and intimate atmosphere. Participating winemakers are deeply committed to Earth-friendly practices such as organic, biodynamic, and regenerative farming, resulting in wines that showcase a wide range of styles and grape varieties not commonly found in Sonoma County vineyards. June 1 – 2 | Tickets on sale March 16.
Taste of Sonoma
Taste of Sonoma celebrates Sonoma County’s wine, food, and culinary culture. Held at Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens, this highly anticipated annual event includes wine tastings from local wineries, culinary demonstrations by renowned chefs, gourmet food pairings, and live entertainment. Attendees can enjoy a wide selection of Sonoma County wines and delicious food prepared by local chefs and artisans. This event offers a sensory experience showcasing the Sonoma County best wine and food. Tickets on sale now. June 24 | 11:00 am

New in Culinary

Ethic Cider Farm

At Ethic Cider Farm visitors can sample a selection of 15 to 20 ciders, along with its apple brandy and Pommeau. Approximately 5% of the offerings are nonalcoholic, reflecting a growing trend towards accommodating consumer preferences. Visitors can engage in experiential learning about regenerative farming practices within the orchard through various workshops. Modern Farming Workshops cater to a diverse audience, including agriculturists and backyard gardeners, aiming to provide a comprehensive introduction to farming techniques. Regenerative Farming Workshops offer hands-on experiences, allowing participants to learn while actively engaging in farming activities. | 12:00 to 5:00 pm | Friday – Sunday

Healdsburg Mocktail Trail

Continuing the trend towards embracing low or no alcohol options, the Mocktail Trail in Healdsburg offers diverse mocktail menus from many popular Healdsburg restaurants. Mixologists at Lo & Behold, Spoon Bar, Bravas Bar de Tapas, Chalkboard, Goodnights Prime Steak & Spirits, Little Saint, The Rooftop at Harmon House, and Willi’s Seafood and Raw Bar have crafted drinks that feature a no-spirits menu going well beyond typical alcohol-free cocktails. From Spanish-inspired mocktails to coastal creations, each stop on the trail promises a unique and delightful experience.

Tisza Bistro

Tisza Bistro offers a fusion of Central European flavors with a distinct Californian flair. Chef/Owner Krisztian Karkus has honed his skills in some of the world’s most prestigious resorts, restaurants, and culinary destinations. At Tisza Bistro, Chef Krisztian delights in creating visually stunning presentations blending old-world European charm with contemporary Sonoma County sophistication.

New in the Outdoors

See Also

Chanslor Ranch Regional Park and Open Space Preserve

Chanslor Ranch, a historic dairy ranch on coastal route Highway 1 in Bodega Bay, has been acquired by Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District for use as county regional park, and is open to the public. Long a privately owned getaway known primarily for horseback trail rides, the 378-acre ranch across Highway 1 from Bodega Dunes and Salmon Creek state beaches is now in county hands and open to the public. Visitors can hike 4.5 miles of trail leading up coastal hills, down to Salmon Creek and around the rugged landscape, which is bounded in part by the creek. Horseback riding is available through Five Brooks Bodega Bay. The land is known for a diversity of habitats, from wetlands to coastal prairie, as well as many plants and animals. The wetlands are a stopover for migrating birds, as well.

Sonoma Botanical Garden

Sonoma Botanical Garden (SBG), in collaboration with Sonoma Ecology Center and Habitat Corridor Project announced a new partnership aimed at designing and establishing a cutting-edge California native plant demonstration garden. The project, which recently broke ground at SBG, will unfold over several years, offering visitors an immersive experience to understand the importance of native plants in landscaping, biodiversity, and conservation efforts. Through public programs and tours, the garden will serve as an educational hub, inspiring appreciation for California flora and promoting sustainable landscape design principles.

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