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NorCal Wine Blog

10 Big Wine Events to Look Forward to in Early 2012

As many people are looking forward to a spending this weekend at home with family and friends, there aren’t a lot of wine events. So, with the New Year just around the corner, this week’s event article is focused on iconic events you can look forward to for the first four months of 2012.

hdr_20_year_sealThese are the big ones. They are the multi-day events that wine lovers build their schedules around. Some sell out fast. Others offer early-bird discounts. Consider buying tickets now or as soon as they come available.

Winter Wineland — Alexander Valley, Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley: January 14 - 15 2012
The 20th anniversary of Winter Wineland and a great opportunity to meet winemakers, taste limited production wines, new releases or library wines. Advance sales end on January 9!

ZAP — San Francisco: January 26 - 29, 2012
Four big Zinfandel events culminating with the Grand Tasting. If you like Zinfandel, you can't miss this event. This year, the pairing and Grand Tasting events will be at The Concourse at 8th and Brannan rather than Fort Mason. It should be a more comfortable location and easier to access. ZAP Epicuria is the Thursday pairing event. ZAP Flights is a tasting seminar that's been interesting every year. The ZAP Winemakers Dinner gives you a chance to hang out with winemakers.

Bring Out the Barrel — Placerville: January 29 - 30, 2012
Enjoy barrel tasting of El Dorado wines and go on a winery scavenger hunt. Be the first to taste the upcoming wine releases.

International Alsace Varietals Festival — Boonville (Anderson Valley, Mendocino County): February 18, 2012
This annual festival celebrates Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Gewurtztraminer, Muscat and Riesling with three excellent events. a Technical Conference, a Grand Tasting and a Winemakers Dinner. Everybody knows how good Anderson Valley Pinot Noir is. Learn about the AVA's other specialty.

Paso Robles Rhone Rangers — Paso Robles: February 19, 2012
The Paso Robles chapter of the Rhone Rangers invite you to a Seminar and Winemaker Lunch followed by a Grand Tasting and Silent Auction. This is a good opportunity to gain a good understanding of how different parts of the big Paso Robles AVA differ with respect to Rhone-variety wines.

Premiere Napa Valley — Napa Valley: February 23 - 25, 2012 *Trade only*
Napa Valley opens its door to the global wine trade in this annual event. There's a three-vintage tasting of many Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot wines, tasting of special lots and then a big auction where those lots are sold. Many individuall wineries have associated events too.

Behind the Cellar Door — Plymouth: March 3 - 4, 2012
You tasted the El Dorado barrels. Now you've got to try those from Amador as its wineries open their doors for food, fun, music and tasting.

A Weekend Celebration of American Rhones — San Francisco: March 24 - 25, 2012
The annual Rhone Rangers tasting is always a really good event. It combines a big Grand Tasting (Sunday) with interesting seminars and a Winemaker Dinner/Live Auction. This year the seminars include a rare wines tasting, a pairing of Rhone wines and bacon, and a survey of Syrah from various American regions.

Hospice du Rhone — Paso Robles: Aprill 27 - 29, 2012
Hospice du Rhone is the biggest and best festival in the world devoted to Rhone-variety wines. There are 5 excellent seminars, a Tavel rosé lunch, an auction lunch (always big fun!) and two massive tastings. If you like Rhone-varietal wines — be they from France, Australia, California or Washington — HdR is the place to be.

Passport to Dry Creek Valley — Dry Creek Valley wineries: April 28 - 29, 2012
This event is perhaps the king of the regional passports. Two days and 50+ wineries in beautiful Dry Creek. This event always sells out fast. Order your tickets as soon as the online sales start at 10am on February 1 (seriiously).

Happy Holidays!

 

Do you or your favorite winery have an upcoming event involving Northern California wine? Event organizers can publicize it in NorCalWine.com's Event Calendar. It's easy and it's free. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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This article is original to NorCalWine.com. Copyright 2011 NorCal Wine. Photo courtesy of Livemore Valley Wine Growers. All rights reserved.