Posts Categorized: Seasonal

Wine Paired With Life: Fall Night-In

Fall Night In Image Dry Creek Valley

With October being a busy month for all – sometimes we think the best way to relax is in the comfort of your own home, turn on your new favorite tv show and enjoy the company of your longest friends. This removes the hassle and hustle of going out. While we’re 100% in support of ordering your favorite Chinese take-out for your friends to pair with a refreshing Dry Creek Valley Sauvignon Blanc, why not try something new! Here are a few quick, easy recipes to help you look like a pairing-pro and that are sure to delight even your pickiest of friends (looking at you, Karen!)

 

Rhone Whites & Cheesy Pumpkin Chickpea Croquettes

There’s no doubt that the Pumpkin is the ultimate icon for October, so let’s celebrate with this crunchy take on classic fall flavor. Pair these bites with a medium-bodied Rhone white wine, such as Marsanne-Roussane, Viognier or a blend and let the stone-fruit and nutty flavors complement the cheesy goodness of your croquettes.

We suggest these Dry Creek Valley Rhone Whites:

Trattore Farms & Winery – MR (60% Marsanne, 40% Roussanne), $35

Mounts Family Winery – Verah Blanc (52% Roussanne, 37% Grenache Blanc, 6% Picpoul Blanc & 5% Marsanne), $28

West Wines – Viognier, $23

Find the recipe for Cheesy Pumpkin Chickpea Croquettes by clicking here to go to Babble.com

 

Zinfandel & BBQ Turkey Meatballs

We know that turkey doesn’t take center stage until the end of November, but why does turkey only get Thanksgiving in the sun? This versatile and healthy meat works so well with the spices from your favorite BBQ sauce making it a perfect pairing for Dry Creek Valley’s signature red wine – Zinfandel! We won’t tell your friends how many of these you ate before they actually showed up…promise.

Try pairing any of these Dry Creek Valley Zinfandels:

Dry Creek Vineyard – Old Vine Zinfandel, $32

Chateau Diana – Zombie Zin, $9 or $28 for reserve

Seghesio Family Vineyards – Cortina Zinfandel, $40

Whip up a batch of these spicy turkey meatballs with this recipe from Sugar Dish Me.

 

Carignane & Sweet Potato Rounds with Goat Cheese

Carignane comes typically bursting with fall flavors of cranberries and baking spice. Making it one of our favorite wines to drink when the leaves turn. This wine is renowned for is food pairing capability so you are welcome to branch off and try your own special recipe. One incredible pairing we can’t get enough of is this savory sweet combination of sweet potatoes and goat cheese.

Stock up on these Dry Creek Valley Carignanes for Autumn:

Frick Winery – Carignane, $26

Peterson Winery – Carignane, Bradford Mountain Estate, $30

Amphora Vineyards – Carignane, Forchini Vineyards, $35

Check out Ciao Florentina for this tasty Sweet Potato Rounds recipe.


What are your favorite Dry Creek Valley pairings to share with friends? Share with us on our social channels for a chance to be featured on our page!

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Winter Weather – A Photo Blog

This winter weather in Dry Creek Valley has been anything but dry! But all that rain sure does make for beautiful and unique pictures. Don’t worry, the vines are dormant this time of year and the weather does not harm them (or your favorite wines!) in any way.

Our wineries and visitors have a great eye for the aesthetic and capturing the natural beauty of any season! Here are some of our favorites:

 

Our #california vines got the cold shoulder this morning… #brrr ❄

A photo posted by A Wine&Spirits Top 100 Winery (@drycreekvineyard) on

Frost, fog & floods definitely sum up this winter & @DryCreekVineyard is seizing every picture-perfect moment.

 

We think @DeLaMontanya_Winery captioned this photo best!

 

Foggy vineyards make a moody and dramatic scene at the Dry Creek Valley General Store (@dcgs1881).

 

When you can’t see where the trees begin in the creek – you know it’s been a wet winter! Thanks @TzabachoRanchoVineyards for this great shot.

 

(Check in on the real-time winter weather in Dry Creek Valley – visit our Geography & Climate page!)

 

Lush cover crops between rows of vines at @KokomoWinery provide nutrients to the soils AND gorgeous bursts of colors in this winter weather.

 

Staying warm with our new fire pit… come visit us at #ComstockWines !! #cheers #drycreekvalley #wine #vino #sonomacounty

A photo posted by Comstock Wines (@comstockwines) on

Who says white wine is just for summer drinking? The new fire pit at @ComstockWines is the perfect place to enjoy any Dry Creek wine!

 

That would put the pot of gold right in the middle of Vera’s Block Sauvignon Blanc…

A photo posted by Mill Creek Winery (@millcreekwinery) on

And to wrap up a gorgeous rainbow at @MillCreekWinery. Proof there is beauty to any storm!

 


Instagram_App_Large_May2016_200 Be sure to follow the above wineries and us on Instagram @DryCreekValleyWines to keep up on all things Dry Creek Valley!

Tag us and use the hashtag #drycreekvalley for a chance to be featured across our social media channels.


Olive Harvest in Dry Creek Valley

Dry Creek Valley may be world-renown for its delicious wines, but the same climate and terroir that create such beautiful grapes also are the perfect bedrock for many other crops. You may notice this in the variety of products (other than wine!) that many of Dry Creek Valley tasting rooms offer from day-to-day. One crop in particular grows exceptionally well in Dry Creek Valley and has been for 100+ years – and that is olives! You’ll find a wide diversity of trees such as Tuscan, Spanish and Greek covering acres across the Valley.

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The olive harvest in Dry Creek Valley typically begins directly following the grape harvest. Wineries who have olive trees get no rest until December – if they’re lucky! Wineries harvest these olives and use them to craft high quality olive oils only found locally.

The 2016 Olive Harvest in Dry Creek Valley was overall reported to be lighter than previous years due to drought like climate. But olives are an alternating-bearing crop so comparing to your previous harvest isn’t always an accurate tool to measure by. Here’s a wrap on harvest information from some of our most famous olive oil producers and our newest!


Comstock Wines

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Tracy and Saul Harvesting Olives at Comstock Wines!

The newest winery to the olive oil game is Comstock Wines. This is their first olive harvest in Dry Creek Valley! On their Dry Creek Valley estate, they have over 100 olive trees, mostly the Greek olive variety, Koroneiki, and Spanish variety, Arbequina. The Comstock team was able to harvest all 100 trees in just one day. Hospitality Director, Tracy Bidia said that it was a “fun team building day!” Visit the tasting room in the beginning of 2017 to try their olive oil first!

 

DaVero Farms & Winery

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The Crew Hard at Work Harvesting Olives at DaVero.

DaVero harvests 22 acres of olives on their estate and 5 acres from neighboring property at their Westside property. These olive trees were planted back in 1990 from cuttings that were imported directly from a Tuscan farm. This ancient olive grove is home to olive trees that are over 800 years old!  Olive trees take 25 years to reach full harvest, so DaVero’s trees are in their prime. In 2016 the olive harvest in Dry Creek Valley began for DaVero on October 14th but due to conflicting labor schedules, several rain delays, they are just finishing this week with a sigh of relief. DaVero olive oil is never better than when it is freshly pressed – so be sure to stop by soon to sample some of their acclaimed Olio Nuovo for a real treat.

 

Martorana Family Winery

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The Annual Olive Oil Winemaker Dinner at Martorana was a Tasty Success!

Over 340 Spanish and Italian olive trees line 35 acres of vineyards at Martorana Family Winery’s organic estate. These trees were planted by Tony Martorana back in the early 80s. All of these olives go into their exclusive Olio di Gio olive oil, named after their winemaker/owner Gio Martorana. Gio actually began making olive oil first in his career before deciding to become a winemaker. As a celebration of the new olive harvest, Martorana hosts an Olive Oil Winemaker Dinner each November and gives their members the chance to watch Gio press the harvested olives and taste the freshly pressed oil before a 5-course dinner curated around the current pressing of Olio di Gio – talk about an amazing meal!

 

A. Rafanelli Winery

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Ready for Pressing at Rafanelli

Since 2006 Rafanelli has planted over 1,600 olive trees located at the winery estate and more located on both north and south of the winery.  These groves have both Spanish and Italians varieties planted consisting of Leccino, Frantoi, Pendolino.  Much like Rafanelli’s Zinfandel grapes, there is a high standard for their olives! The trees are hand harvested every year, the olives cold pressed and then the oil is bottled to sell at the winery. This estate extra virgin oil is delicious for dipping, cooking and finishing dishes with. Currently the 2016 olive oil is settling – you’ll have to wait until 2017 to taste.

 

Trattore Farms

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Possibly the most recognized label of olive oil comes from Trattore Farms under the Dry Creek Olive Company label. All around Sonoma County you’ll see these olive oils on shelves and on menus. This year Trattore harvested from their 150+ year old trees for a very special olive oil soon to make its debut. Trattore houses nearly 5 acres of estate fruit and their very own custom olive mill that incorporates both tradition and modern olive oil making styles. Trattore opens its mills to the olive growing community during the olive harvest season during their Community Milling dates. In 2016, olive growers turned out in numbers for a chance to create community olive oil despite the pouring rain.

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Any time of year you can visit Trattore for an in depth lesson and tasting through their olive oils. They even offer perfect variety packs if you can’t choose your favorite!

 

Which Dry Creek Valley olive oil is your favorite? Let us know by tagging us  for a chance to be featured on our pages.

 

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Thanks to all of our wineries for sharing about their 2016 Olive Harvest in Dry Creek Valley!
Tracy Bidia at Comstock Wines / Colleen McGlynn at DaVero Farms & Winery / Andreanna DeForest & Gio Martorana at Martorana Family Winery / Shelly Rafanelli at A. Rafanelli Winery / Mary Louise Bucher at Trattore Farms

Harvest 2016 – A Photo Essay

Harvest 2016 is in full swing in Dry Creek Valley – we’ve seen everything from chardonnay to petite sirah starting to come in. Here in Sonoma County we’ve been seeing consistently cool mornings where the fog lingers until afternoon. While cool weather is a nice break for the vineyard laborers, it definitely slows down the sugar development in the grapes. Even though Dry Creek Valley is only 16 miles long, location and microclimate means that grapes ripen at different rates. Whether you’re in the north end of the valley (where it’s typically warmer) or in the south can make all the difference!

For more detailed information about Dry Creek Valley’s harvest, check out our 2016 Harvest page.

For this year’s photo essay, we took to Instagram for inspiration by searching #drycreekvalley & #scharvest.


Follow us for daily updates from your favorite Dry Creek Valley Wineries:

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Michel-Schlumberger starts juicing their top grapes to produce 2016 Platinum Chardonnay

 

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Comstock Wines brings in their Estate Zinfandel

 

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Looks like grapes aren’t the only thing ripe! Tasty Lemon Cucumbers have arrived at Pedroncelli Winery

 

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Look at the gorgeous color on Mill Creek Winery’s future double gold winning Gewurtztraminer

 

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Mauritson Wines is in full harvest mode – excited to share with you this 2016 vintage

 

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First Fruit by the Truckloads for Peterson Winery’s Zinfandel

 

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Mounts Winery bringing in Roussanne for their Verah label

 

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The last of Dry Creek Vineyard’s 2016 Sauvignon Blanc has been harvested

For predictions about this knockout vintage and more on Dry Creek Valley’s harvest, check out our 2016 Harvest page.


Updates are coming daily from your favorite Dry Creek Valley Wineries – make sure you stay in the know:

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Use the hashtags #drycreekvalley & #scharvest when searching for the latest Harvest 2016 news!

Photo Credits to These Awesome Instagram Accounts:
@brtny_elyse / @m_schlumberger / @supercallafrajalistick / @Peterson_Winery /
@PedroncelliWine / @ComstockWines / @mountswinery / @drycreekvineyard

Veraison – The Final Haul to Harvest

Veraison: the onset of ripening and the change of color of the grape berries. The term is originally French (véraison), but has been adopted into English use.


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We’ve reached a beautiful turning point here in Dry Creek Valley – veraison. With this change in color, eager winegrowers and winemakers can see the culmination of the previous 9-months transform into the 2016 vintage. Excited to sneak a peek, we asked our vineyard members, Bob & Joyce Littell of Treborce Vineyards if we could come learn more about the process. Treborce Vineyards is home to beautiful gardens, 2 German Shorthaired Pointers (Woody & Dee Dee) and acres of Zinfandel and Petite Sirah that are used in many highly regarded and award winning wines in the industry. To learn more about Treborce Vineyards, you can visit our past interview with them from 2014.

On the tour Bob Littell first stops in his Petite Sirah vineyard, which boasts nearly purple bunches. In comparison to his Zinfandel grapes, they are further ahead in this transformation. More typically, Sauvignon Blanc is the first to greet veraison and the first to be harvested, while Zinfandel takes more time on the vine to develop its rich and deep flavors. In this case, Petite Sirah falls somewhere in the middle.

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Interesting to note though is that some of Littell’s Zinfandel vines, in the same block, for that matter, aren’t all at the same veraison point yet. Some vines are 12% changing and others are well over 75%. There are many factors that contribute to this and growers like Littell go through many tests to see what the vines may be lacking or getting too much of and how to adjust accordingly. Vines seem to have their own unique personality just like the growers and winemakers of Dry Creek Valley.

Veraison doesn’t just affect the color of the grapes, but also the texture and taste. The grapes will get juicier and more voluptuous. And the fruit will get sweeter and more complex. In the vineyard we sampled some grapes, still sour but getting closer to world class wines and worlds different from the green grapes yet to begin the veraison process.

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Littell hopes for a more bountiful harvest this year than last which was about 30% lower than average. The increase in rain was great for vine growth. The 2016 Vintage has so far been a great growing year and has many winemaker’s mouths watering with anticipation. And the winegrowers are gearing up for harvest just around the corner. You can find Treborce Vineyard grapes in many recognized Dry Creek Valley labels such as Wilson Winery and Mauritson Family Vineyards.

Stay tuned. Our next stop – harvest!

Thanks and gratitude to Bob and Joyce Littell for welcoming us into their vineyards and for always being  a wealth of knowledge on all things wine and Dry Creek Valley.

 


In the Vineyard with Richard Rued

In honor of upcoming Father’s Day, we decided to focus our In the Vineyard on a man with deep Dry Creek Valley roots, Richard Rued. On a perfectly sunny and breezy morning in June, we sat down with both him and his wife, Dee, at Rued Winery for an update on their vineyards and a deeper dive into his family’s history.


All About the Family: The Rueds

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Steve (left), Paul (on tractor), Richard (back right), Tom (center) & Tyler (lab) Rued

Richard’s great-grandfather, Henry, first came to Northern California in the late 1800s from Switzerland, and planted grapes in Russian River Valley. Henry moved his entire family here in 1890 to a property in Alexander Valley. Both of these locations had vineyards, but were uprooted during Prohibition to plant mostly apples and prunes. The Alexander Valley property was also a small working dairy ranch and the perfect place to raise the Rued family.

It wasn’t until 1957 that the Rueds bought their first Dry Creek Valley property. Richard had taken this new property as a venture for FFA (Future Farmers of America) in High School by growing the family’s first Dry Creek Valley grapes.

Richard remembers getting off the bus from school and going straight to work on their ranch. It was his responsibility to bring in the sheep – a task that his father, Paul, would help him with in a slightly unconventional way. You see, on their property was a small airport. Paul would take Richard up in a plane to search for wherever the sheep were that day so that Richard could ride his horse directly to the flock and not have to spend hours searching. Richard still remembers the steep ascent fondly as time well spent with his dad.

Rued WineryRued Wines - Tasting Room

Both Richard and his wife, Dee, still live in Dry Creek Valley. They have two sons – Steve & Tom, who were both raised in the Valley and now work in the wine business. Tom works in the vineyards with Richard and Steve is the winemaker for the Rueds’ family label – Rued Winery. The label is relatively new with their first vintage in 2000 with their winery and tasting room opening just 10-years ago in 2006. Their wine is a testament to the family’s history of working the ground for many years and are true to the vineyard the grapes were grown in.

In a world of corporate wine – Richard and Dee believe that it’s just as important as ever to keep family wineries around. They both feel pressure as land values increase. The Rueds feel that small production, family style wine has a better value and tastes more authentic. Dee feels that it’s important for guests to see families with a deep history, someone who is living their passion as a way of means, and has been for years. “Most wineries in Dry Creek, when visitors show up, they can almost always talk to an owner, compared to Napa, where you’ll hardly ever see it,” says Richard. “People seem to enjoy talking to us.”

For more Dry Creek Dad’s – check out our Father’s Day blog!


In the Vineyard

In the Vineyard April to June

In Dry Creek Valley, the Rueds have 70 acres including: Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc, and Zinfandel which according to Richard are seeing a great year so far. This year the vines are really growing due to the increase of water they received during winter and the spring rains. The previous drought years were a means for concern, but this year’s growth is a great sign and gives Richard hope for the 2016 vintage.
“Vines are doing good. They look good!” states Richard. Blooms came a little quick this year, but Rued feels that the timing standard has been consistently inching earlier.  His Chardonnay vineyard, planted in 1990, just behind the tasting room, must be nearly 7-feet tall. Bunches of grapes are full and are starting to get tighter.

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What’s next for these vines? The Rueds are anticipating an early harvest in August, but have fingers crossed for September. For these Sauvginon Blanc & Chardonnay grapes, they are harvested first and earliest in the day. White grapes due better when picked in cooler temperatures.

A very big thank you to Richard and Dee for taking the time to sit and talk with us about their family and vines. It’s members like these that make the Dry Creek Valley rich and rooted in values that we hold near and dear. And a very Happy Father’s Day to all!

For daily updates on all of our Dry Creek Valley wineries and vineyards, follow us on Instagram at @drycreekvalleywines and be sure to like us on Facebook @drycreekvalley to keep up to date on all that’s happening!

 

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Dry Creek Valley by Bike

For National Physical Fitness month – we’re celebrating Dry Creek Valley style – by bike! There’s a number of you who have had the chance to sit early morning at the Dry Creek Valley General Store – the air is crisp and the sun is burning off the valley fog. Over a century of agricultural and family history are ever present on the deck of the only commercial building in the Valley.

As you take a sip of your freshly brewed coffee and look at your Dry Creek Valley Map to plan your day, a group of bicyclers come to a rest at one of the five stop signs in the valley and you think to yourself, “what a great way to enjoy the beauty. I’ll have to do that someday.”

General Store Bikes

This article is to help you turn that someday, into this weekend or the next. With local bike companies like Wine Country Bikes & Spoke Folk Cyclery it’s simple to rent and the perfect start to your wine country adventure. You can even schedule your own guided tour! We’re highlighting the perfect winery stops along the way. Dry Creek Valley is the perfect bike ride whatever your skill level.

Suggestions for your Dry Creek Valley Bike Tour

From town you can take the short bike ride over to Dry Creek Road and the adventure begins! Slight hills give your legs the right amount of tingle and the fresh air fills your lungs as adrenaline starts to build. Your view expands as you cycle through the vineyards until all you can see are the endless rows of undisturbed beauty. Peddling past numerous wineries and the thought of tasting on your return ride makes your mouth water.

From town you can take the short bike ride over to Dry Creek Road and the adventure begins! Cycle through the vineyards until all you can see are the endless rows of undisturbed beauty.

 

Dutcher Crossing Winery

Doesn’t it make sense to start your tasting at Dutcher Crossing – whose label is adorned with an old fashioned bicycle? If you don’t start here because of the irony, do it for the beautiful wines. If you brought a picnic lunch with you, Dutcher Crossing has a beautiful Picnic Area for guests with sweeping views of estate vineyards. Proprietor Debra Mathy knows how to treat her wine club, signing up will not leave you disappointed.

Doesn’t it make sense to start your tasting at Dutcher Crossing – whose label is adorned with an old fashioned bicycle? If you don’t start here because of the irony, do it for the beautiful wines. If you brought a picnic lunch with you, Dutcher Crossing has a beautiful Picnic Area for guests with sweeping views of estate vineyards. Proprietor Debra Mathy knows how to treat her wine club, signing up will not leave you disappointed.

 

Zichichi Family Vineyard

After you’ve enjoyed your lunch at Dutcher, continue heading south to Yoakim Bridge where you’ll take the right to Zichichi for barrel tasting of their estate wines. The perfect spot for a bike ride, as all wines are sold as futures, so you won’t need to take up space in your bag and you’ll have one more reason to come back. Family owned and operated, each wine is traditionally blended delivering bold, full flavored profiles.

After you’ve enjoyed your lunch at Dutcher, continue heading south to Yoakim Bridge where you’ll take the right to Zichichi Family Vineyard for barrel tasting of their estate wines. The perfect spot for a bike ride, as all wines are sold as futures, so you won’t need to take up space in your bag and you’ll have one more reason to come back. Family owned and operated, each wine is traditionally blended delivering bold, full flavored profiles.

 

Chateau Diana

Heading back to Dry Creek Road, head south to Chateau Diana for beautiful grounds and a fun atmosphere that will lift your spirits mid-ride. With a wide variety of wines in a variety of price ranges, Chateau Diana has something for any wine lover. Not to mention their wine slushees are guaranteed to cool you down on a hot day.

Heading back to Dry Creek Road, head south to Chateau Diana for beautiful grounds and a fun atmosphere that will lift your spirits mid-ride. With a wide variety of wines in a variety of price ranges, Chateau Diana has something for any wine lover. Not to mention their wine slushees are guaranteed to cool you down on a hot day.

 

Amista Vineyards

Bubbles are the quintessential refreshment after a long day of biking don’t they? You need to stop at Dry Creek Valley’s main sparkling wine producer, Amista, for your last stop in the valley. Their Blanc de Blanc provides a refreshing and crisp libation. Not to mention you’re surrounded by their gorgeous Morningsong Vineyards. Join their wine club and get to taste their limited release Sparkling Grenache.

Bubbles are the quintessential refreshment after a long day of biking. You need to stop at Dry Creek Valley’s main sparkling wine producer, Amista Vineyards, for your last stop in the valley. Their Blanc de Blanc provides a refreshing and crisp libation. Not to mention you’re surrounded by their gorgeous Morningsong Vineyards. Join their wine club and you get to taste their limited release Sparkling Grenache.

 

Winding down your day, cycle back into town. After you return your bicycle you’ll be surrounded by many more tasting rooms or, if it’s time for dinner, world-renowned restaurants.

Winding down your day, cycle back into town. After you return your bicycle you’ll be surrounded by many more tasting rooms or, if it’s time for dinner, world-renowned restaurants.

With over 60+ wineries, each Dry Creek Valley bike ride proves to be a new adventure of meeting winemakers and tasting wines. Amazing experience guaranteed in Dry Creek Valley. Download Spoke Folk’s Bike Map and visit our Interactive Winery Map to get started!

Be sure to share with us your favorite Dry Creek Valley by Bike Itinerary by tagging us Facebook/Twitter: @drycreekvalley and Instagram @drycreekvalleywines.


Learn More About Bike Rentals and Guided Tours in Healdsburg at these Local Establishments:

www.winecountrybikes.com

www.spokefolk.com

 


Passport to Dry Creek Valley 2016 Photo Recap

We had an amazing weekend celebrating the 27th annual Passport to Dry Creek Valley with you and 48 wineries! Each year, our community of vintners and growers come together – eager to share the best of our agricultural bounty with you. We are honored to serve guests from all over the country and take pride that you share your weekend with us. We hope you had as much fun as we did.

We loved seeing all your photos using the hashtag #DCVPassport and wish we could highlight them all as we received hundreds of tags over the weekend. We’re reminiscing in pictures to tide us over until next year’s festivities. We can’t wait to see you in 2017. Here are some highlights from the event:

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We’re still craving these Sriracha Shrimp from Dutcher Crossing.

 

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Passport is the perfect occasion to catch up with friends and mingle with winemakers!

 

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Did ye follow the bagpipes to Fritz Underground Winery to party with these tartan clad lassies?

 

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Stop for a #selfie at beautiful #Fritz – Best #DCVPassport yet!

 

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Time to head over to Martorana for more Passport tradition and fun.

 

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Your’s and mine glasses filled with Dry Creek Valley Chardonnay & Zinfandel.

 

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A little rain on Friday, but other than that the weekend boasted perfect weather for all the festivities.

 

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Flamenco at Mazzocco – what a combination!

 

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This spicy Cajun jambalaya was the perfect pairing with Wilson’s award winning Zinfandel.

 

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We saw so many picture-perfect opportunities at Passport and couldn’t miss this one.

 

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A textbook photo-bomb at Wilson – we see you!

 

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And we’ll be seeing YOU next year for Passport!

 

SAVE THE DATE: PASSPORT 2017 is APRIL 29th & 30th

To view the entire gallery – visit our Passport to Dry Creek Valley page!


Passport to Dry Creek Valley Raffle

Join us in raising money for the Healdsburg Unified School District! This year we’re hosting a raffle to win amazing prize packages from our Passport wineries

100% of our donated dollars support two programs – training preschool teachers in the Healdsburg Unified School District and supporting Pasitos, which helps Spanish speaking children to be successful in school and provides parents with the tools to help maximize their impact on their children’s education. Last year, we raised more than $20,000 through our fundraising efforts and believe Passport is the perfect gateway to our biggest fans.

Raffle tickets are only $5 for 1 ticket, and $20 for 5 tickets. We’ll select winners on 4/27.

Prize packages feature large format bottles from your favorite wineries, bottles for your cellar and even tasting experiences and are an estimated value of $300! As more wineries donate items to the cause, we will add in more packages to accommodate our raffle demand. You do not need to attend Passport to purchase raffle tickets.

Buy your raffle tickets today!

 

Check out below for themes from our donating wineries and be sure to schedule a stop during your Passport Weekend:

 

Forchini Vineyards & Winery

Nothing is better than an Italian experience!  Your travel destination is Italy–welcome to “Under the Forchini Sun!”  In our garden enjoy stunning views and Italian melodies while sipping Papa Nonno, our Tuscan Red.  Chef Muir will serve Cannelloni stuffed with spinach and meat topped with two sauces.  End your Tuscan visit munching glazed chocolate bites, delicious with our Zinfandel and Cabernet.  Special Passport pricing.  Benevenuti a Forchini!

 

Collier Falls at Family Wineries

Join us for our Four Course Mediterranean Wine & Food Pairing. Zinfandel with Canneli Bean and Rocket Salad (Vegan) – Primitivo with Pasta with Sweet Italian Sausage, Artichokes, Roasted Garlic and Tomatos – Petite Sirah with Rustic Italian Braised Short Ribs – Cabernet Sauvignon with Blackberry Gelato and Collier Falls Raspberry Chocolate Sauce.  More Mediterranean wine selections from our 5 co-op wineries in our tasting room.

 

Seghesio Family Vineyards             

Get your Passport stamped at Seghesio Family Vineyards where you will be transported to the largest island in the Mediterranean… Sicily!! Just off the toe of Italy’s boot. Celebrate with us in our historic grove with live music, bocce ball, and of course a Sicilian inspired food and wine extravaganza!

 

Rued Winery                

Step back in time and experience Dry Creek Valley as it once was. The Rued Family invites you to join them in celebrating the rich agricultural history forged by the early settlers. Stroll through our country store, step up to the bar and sip our handcrafted wines, chow down at the cookhouse, tap your toes at the hoedown and enjoy our famous ice cream treats.

 

Pedroncelli Winery          

Pedroncelli is Bistro 1220 this year. Chef Brian Anderson, Bistro 29, will be creating Brittany-inspired fare to complement our wines. Bistro 29 hearkens to the Finistére, Department 29 in France, and is translated as Land’s End. Pedroncelli hails from the eastern-most area Department 1927 (our founding year). A perfect pairing. Featuring our favorite wines where you’ll enjoy a feast for all five senses!

 

West Wines

Grab your Passports and cruise back in time to the 60’s. American Graffiti comes to West Wines with fabulous cars, fun clothes, memorable rock ‘n’ roll and more! Savor our European-style wines next to our Certified Sustainable vineyards. Our small family winery specializes in Cabernet Sauvignon, French and Italian style red blends, crisp white Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Viognier and dessert wine.

 

Comstock Wines 

As our estate vines begin to wake and the growing season begins, Comstock Wines celebrates all that is new this spring with fresh farm-to-table bites paired with special new release wines.  Fantastic food, fabulous wines and new friends – Comstock Wines can’t wait to celebrate spring and share our new winery with you!

 

Fritz Underground Winery

Ye outlanders are in for a treat.  Follow the bagpipes to the highlands of Dry Creek Valley and Fritz Underground Winery. Hidden away in the hillside of our 112 acre estate is our unique subterranean facility. Join the lads and lassies of the winery clad in their finest tartan as you feast on potato cakes with smoked salmon and herbed creme  fraiche with our Estate Sauvignon Blanc and a hearty beef stew with our  bonnie Estate Zinfandel. Aye. Ye Ken ye don’t want to miss it.

 

Cast Wines

Take in stunning views from our outdoor tasting terrace at one of Dry Creek’s newest wineries. Taste wines hand crafted by Mike Gulyash. We will be pouring our signature Sauvignon Blanc and Estate Grey Palm Zinfandel, followed by our robust 2013 Watson Vineyard Old Vine Zinfandel. Pause for a moment in our relaxing setting, an oasis from the hustle and bustle of the day.

 

A. Rafanelli Winery

Take an early spring picnic with the Rafanelli Family into the countryside of Umbria.  Here you can “Pic Nic a Trevi” where  the olive and olive growing traditions are celebrated in this hillside town.  Delight in this spring time festival that fuses the flavors of olives and herbs with local foods.   Enjoy Italian inspired dishes prepared with our own olive oils and deliciously paired with our new wines.

 

Wilson Winery

Get your passport stamped at Wilson Winery as you travel to New Orleans for Mardi Gras!  Join the Wilson Krewe led by our Queen of Carnival, Diane, in a parade of gold medal-winning Zinfandels.  The party continues with authentic Cajun cuisine provided by Lisa Boisset of The Cook And The Drummer, and of course, musical entertainment from DJ FizNik Rick.  Laizzez les bons temps rouler!

 

Kachina Vineyards

Calling all foodies! We are serving up grilled cheesy goodness-Raclette and other specialty cheeses! Blissful days spent creating and perfecting THE best grilled cheesy goodness that pairs with our Bubbly and Cabernet! Unveiling our new Charbono release as well! No foodie experience is complete without dessert! Decadent dark chocolate port-infused truffles paired with out Zinfandel Port. A sweet ending to a foodie experience!

 

Mauritson Family Winery  

Winemaker Clay Mauritson’s superb Rockpile Zinfandels + chef Charlie Palmer’s sublime cuisine = a weekend of perfect wine and food pairings. Plus, don’t miss the highly anticipated release of our 2014 Charlie Clay Pinot Noir. Want signed bottles? Clay and Charlie will be happy to oblige.

 

Göpfrich Winery

Visit Göpfrich Winery ! This is one of the few times in the year that we are actually open to the public. We will be pouring our Dry Creek Valley Estate wines which are only available at the winery since there is no outside distribution of our wines. Enjoy the relaxing ambiance of a small family winery. Why not visit a little piece of Germany this weekend!

 

Nick Goldschmidt’s Salmons Leap Vineyard – Sunday Vineyard Tour

650 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg – begins promptly at 9:30a

Join Yolyn Goldschmidt, owner and president of Goldschmidt Vineyards, along with international winemaker Claudia Del Rio from Chile and Phil Enzenauer, a well-known Dry Creek Valley vineyard manager, for a tour of Salmons Leap Vineyard.

Along with the tour, Vineyard Manager Phil will discuss a variety of topics including establishing and managing vineyards throughout Dry Creek Valley, water shortage issues, the growing lack of farm labor, and the move to sustainable vineyard practices. Phil will talk about pruning on VSP versus split canopy, water usage, best practices during the growing season, the importance of berry size, and how proper viticulture practices can influence berry size.  Winemaker Claudia will compare and contrast grapes grown on this site to similar sites in the Alexander Valley. She will discuss wine differences from the two Sonoma County appellations (Dry Creek and Alexander Valleys) that Nick Goldschmidt and she oversee, and include a tasting of Nick’s wine produced in these appellations. Salmons Leap is one of several vineyards Nick and Yolyn Goldschmidt own throughout the world, giving Claudia a global perspective of viticulture and winemaking. With this view in mind, Claudia will discuss how the team produces the best possible fruit from this vineyard. To conclude, Yolyn will offer a special tasting of other Goldschmidt wines.

To sign up for this international perspective on the Goldschmidt’s Dry Creek Valley vineyards, please RSVP to Karen at [email protected]

 

Download 2016 Passport Map, Themes & Vineyard Tour Information.

 

Current prize packages* (each is an estimated $300 value):

#1 – For your collection a 2002 Hillside Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Magnum from Collier Falls, a bottle of Forchini Pinot Noir & a bottle of Rued Sauvignon Blanc.

#2 – A 2013 Old Vine Zinfandel Magnum by Seghesio Family Vineyards, Forchini Cabernet Sauvignon, Rued  Cabernet Sauvignon,  Mother Clone Zinfandel from J. Pedroncelli, a surprise bottle from Kachina Vineyards & a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc from Comstock Wines.

#3 – A Magnum of 2013 Three Vineyards Cabernet from J. Pedroncelli, a bottle of Rued Zinfandel, Zinfandel from A. Rafanelli, a surprise bottle from Kachina Vineyards and a box set of 3 Wilson wines.

#4 – A Magnum from Cast Wines, a bottle of Rued Cabernet, Zinfandel from A. Rafanelli, a surprise bottle from Kachina Vineyards and complimentary tasting for 8 people at Fritz Underground Winery.

# 5 – A 2005 West Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Magnum, Rued Zinfandel, mystery bottle from Kachina Vineyards, a bottle of Zinfandel and tasting for 4 from our newest winery Comstock Wines.

#6 – A collectors magnum from Gopfrich of their 2007 Cabernet Reserve, 2 bottles from Kachina Vineyards with complimentary wine and truffle tasting for 4, a bottle Grey Palm Estate Zinfandel from Cast, and a bottle of Forchini’s Beausierra Bordeaux blend.

#7 – A Vineyard Tour Inspired Prize Package: A magnum of Mauritson’s Rockpile Zinfandel, a bottle of West Wines West Crest Cuvee, a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc from Cast and a large format bottle of 2011 Cabernet from Forefather’s Wine (Goldschmidt’s Vineyards).

Each prize package is an est. $300 value. Packages may vary slightly and will be updated to include new donations.

 

Tickets are $5 for 1 ticket and $20 for 5 tickets.

Visit Raffle River to purchase your raffle tickets today!

 

*Actual Prize Packages may vary slightly from description but will still hold an estimated $300 value.

Fifth Round of Winery Themes for 2016 Passport

Passport to Dry Creek Valley – Fifth Round of Themes Revealed!

We’re almost done. This round features the last of the wineries out on Dry Creek & Westside Road. We’ll finish next week with our wineries located in the town of Healdsburg! Download your map of this year’s participating wineries, click here.

 

Lambert Bridge Winery

Join us for the perfect wine country escape all whilst enjoying great wine and food, warm hospitality and a game or two of beanbag toss.  A relaxing and fun experience at Lambert Bridge creates the perfect environment to savor small-lot artisanal wines and enjoy a hidden gem in the heart of Dry Creek Valley.  Feast Catering will be handcrafting fresh and local food, focusing on the amazing bounty of Sonoma County.

Lambert Bridge

 

Wilson Winery

Get your passport stamped at Wilson Winery as you travel to New Orleans for Mardi Gras!  Join the Wilson Krewe led by our Queen of Carnival, Diane, in a parade of gold medal-winning Zinfandels.  The party continues with authentic Cajun cuisine provided by Lisa Boisset of The Cook And The Drummer, and of course, musical entertainment from DJ FizNik Rick.  Laizzez les bons temps rouler!

Wilson

 

Comstock Wines

As our estate vines begin to wake and the growing season begins, Comstock Wines celebrates all that is new this spring with fresh farm-to-table bites paired with special new release wines.  Fantastic food, fabulous wines and new friends – Comstock Wines can’t wait to celebrate spring and share our new winery with you!

Comstock

 

West Wines

Grab your passports and cruise back in time to the 60’s. American Graffiti comes to West Wines with fabulous cars, fun clothes, memorable rock ‘n’ roll and more! Savor our European-style wines next to our Certified Sustainable vineyards. Our small family winery specializes in Cabernet Sauvignon, French and Italian style red blends, crisp white Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Viognier and dessert wine.

West Wines

 

DaVero Farms & Winery

Come taste what happens when you work with Mother Nature and embrace natural winemaking. Enjoy remarkable, 100% natural wines from Italian varietals – Sangiovese, Barbera, Sagrantino, and more – most grown right here on our Biodynamic farm and paired with our own lamb, pork, fresh produce and legendary olive oil. You’ll quickly understand why our motto is; “Grow what belongs here. Be patient.”

DaVero

 

Geyser Peak

Join Geyser Peak Winery and our “Taste of the Rat Pack” – Close your eyes and be transported back to the swingin’ days in the Copa Room of the Sands Hotel in Las Vegas.  Can you dig it?

Sample some of Frank, Sammy, and Dean’s favorite tasty bites paired perfectly with our wines.  We are also featuring a “signature themed cocktail” served on our patio overlooking Dry Creek Valley.  Come swing to live music on the lawn area.  See you soon!

 

Geyser peak correct

 

Armida Winery

CADDYSHACK. “Cinderella story. Outta nowhere. A former greenskeeper, now about to become the Masters champion. It looks like a mirac……  It’s in the hole! It’s in the hole!   It’s in the hole!”  Relax in the luxurious amenities of the Bushwood Country Club, along with the Head Pro Menu, the PULSATORS, Barrel Tasting, and of course….. the best Zinfandels in Dry Creek Valley. FORE!

Armida

 

De La Montanya Winery

“Keep on driving south to the last stop in Dry Creek Valley.  If you have visited us before you know we are hard to find but worth the effort.  If you haven’t, we then what are you waiting for?  Food, wine, music, and who knows what other antics will ensue.  Featuring unique varietals in limited quantities that are best enjoyed with friends.”

De La Montanya

 

Next post we reveal our wineries in town: Manzanita Creek Winery, Seghesio Family Vineyards, Selby Winery, Roadhouse Winery, Malm Cellars & Blanchard Family Wines.

 

Any of the above themes seem spark a “don’t miss” in your book? Add them to your virtual planner where you can map out your entire Passport adventure in one place. You can find our virtual itinerary planner here.


To read more about Passport to Dry Creek Valley visit our events page!

There are still a few Prelude to Passport lunches and dinners left – don’t miss this exclusive opportunity to meet your favorite winemakers over a great meal! Learn more here.

 

Sunday Passports are SOLD OUT! Be sure to buy your 2-day Passports soon so you don’t miss out on this amazing event! Click here for tickets.