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Loads of Wine Events for this Pre-Holiday Weekend

wreathOnlyWithType2011webIf you survived Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and your credit cards haven't cried "Uncle" yet, this will be a great weekend to go shopping for your wine-loving friends. Or your wine-loving self. Wineries all over northern California are pouring not just wine, but holiday cheer. There are art and gift shows, tree lightings and plenty of tasty treats. And two big region-wide Passport-ish events: Rutherford and Livermore Valley. So, skip that crowded shopping mall this weekend and head out to your local wineries.

If you happen to be in Paso Robles this evening, start the weekend off right with some mulled wine and cookies at Vina Robles tree illuminating celebration. No RSVP is necessary. 5:30 - 7:30pm.

East Bay

Wine Wonderland Open House — Rock Wall Wine Company, Alameda: 1 - 5pm, Saturday Dec. 3
A variety of selections from Rock Wall and their resident producers: Blacksmith Cellars, Carica Wines, Ehrenberg Cellars, Eno Wines, John Robert Eppler Wines, Joseph Gary Cellars, Mercy and R&B Cellars! More than 65 wines in all.

Stomping Girl Winery Pop-Up — Zut! On Fourth restaurant, Berkeley: 3 - 5pm, Saturday Dec. 3
A complimentary wine tasting with the winemakers.

Tessier Release Party — BarCeluna, Alameda: 1 - 4pm, Sunday Dec.. 4
A trio of brand new Tessier wines will be poured from the 2010 vintage—a Pinot Noir from the Carneros region, the Russian River blend, and a very special bottling from Saralee’s Vineyard.

Lake County

Art & Wine Reception with Obsidian Ridge — Lake County Wine Studio, Upper Lake: 4 - 7pm, Saturday Dec. 3
Meet artist Renee Geare, while sipping delicious newly released wines from Obsidian Ridge Vineyard paired with delectable appetizers.

Livermore Valley

Holiday in the Vineyards — Livermore Valley Wineries: noon to 5pm, Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 3, 4
An annual wine country tradition where wineries showcase their tasting rooms with arts and craft vendors, special wines, festive activities, santa visits, carolers, and more.


Downtown Lodi Holiday Wine Walk — Lodi: noon - 5pm, Saturday, Dec.. 3
Sample wines at nine tasting rooms.

Napa Valley

Art & Wine at Nichelini Family Winery — St. Helena: 11am - 5pm, Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 3, 4
After 121 years [Wow!], Nichelini Family Winery hosts the opening of its first ever art show. Featured will be ceramic sculptures and functional art objects created by renowned Napa artists Wendy Spiers and Carlos Oropeza.

Rutherford Passport Weekend — Rutherford Wineries: 11am - 4pm, Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 3, 4
Enjoy special pourings, barrel and tank tastings, paired food and wines, and conversations with the winemakers

Holiday Party & Tree Lighting — Robert Mondavi Winery, Oakville: 3 - 5pm, Saturday, Dec. 3
The annual tree lighting ceremony and party, including horse and buggy rides through the To Kalon vineyard, Moscato d’Oro and other Robert Mondavi Winery wines, hot apple cider, carolers, Italian cookies, cheese, charcuterie and a visit from Santa Claus.

Paso Robles

Changala Winery Holiday Open House — Paso Robles: 11am - 5pm, Saturday Dec. 3
Enjoy live music, nibbles, great wine and chocolate, all sorts of goodies and fun.

San Francisco and SF Peninsula

Best of California Cabernet Tasting — K & L Wines, Redwood City: 1 - 4pm, Saturday, Dec. 3
13 Cabernet Sauvignon from the 2008 vintage, including Dominus, Staglin, Quintessa and Paul Hobbs Beckstoffer To-Kalon. [I'll be there and hope to see you.]

Shypoke Cellars tasting — Que Syrah Wine Bar, San Francisco: 5 - 8pm, Saturday Dec. 3
Peter Heitz will be pouring four wines from his current vintage.

Sierra Foothills

Deaver Vineyards Holiday Open House — Plymouth: 11am - 5pm, Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 3, 4
Nibbles, recipe ideas and wine tasting.

Sonoma County

Siduri/Novy Family Holiday Open House — Santa Rosa: 9am to 4pm, Saturday Dec. 3
Celebrate the Holiday Season with a large selection of wines, many offered at special Holiday prices, plus gourmet nibbles (at least as gourmet as we get), and prizes for the ugliest Holiday outfits.

Sonoma Valley Wine Market — Sonoma: noon to 4pm, Saturday Dec. 3
Unprecedented access to over 35 Sonoma Valley wineries all in one place!

Townley Wines Holiday Party — Sonoma: 1 - 4pm, Saturday Dec. 2
They will pour tastes of our new wines and serve light appetizers with lots of holiday cheer. [Randy Townley's wines aren't widely known, but I've really enjoyed his Pinot Noir and Syrah over the years. Try to get out there to taste them if you can. - Fred]

Kenwood Vineyards Art, Food and Wine Experience - Kenwood: 2:00 - 3:30pm, Saturday & Sunday Dec. 3, 4
Taste exceptional Cabernet Sauvignons while learning and viewing the renowned Artist Series Collection. These are tours, so you should reserve a spot and arrive at or before the stated start time.

Annual Catalan Holiday Luncheon at Gloria Ferrer — Sonoma: 11am - 2pm, Sunday Dec. 4
A special Catalan-inspired holiday luncheon featuring traditional Spanish feast with a sparkling wine reception. [I can tell you from personal experience that Gloria Ferrer knows how to put out an excellent spread!]

Southern California

Best of California Cabernet Tasting, Session 1 — K & L, Hollywood: 1 - 3pm, Saturday, Dec. 3
Robert Craig, Lewis Cellars, Phelps insignia, Dominus and more.

Best of California Cabernet Tasting, Session 2 — K & L, Hollywood: 4 - 6pm, Saturday, Dec. 3
Robert Craig, Lewis Cellars, Phelps insignia, Dominus and more.

Winter Wine Classic — Santa Barbara: 4 - 7pm, Sunday Dec. 4
A grand tasting of nearly 100 classic California wines.


Do you or your favorite winery have an upcoming event involving Northern California wine? Event organizers can publicize it in'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 Copyright 2011 NorCal Wine. Photo courtesy of Livemore Valley Wine Growers. All rights reserved.