Hosted by the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association, the inaugural harvest celebration weekend kicks off Friday night with a pig roast under the stars at the redwood grove of the county fairgrounds in Boonville. In the tradition of a French “Boucherie” festival, renowned chef Scott Baird will prepare a feast celebrating the deep agricultural roots and abundance of this picturesque valley. Others joining the festivities include Anderson Valley Brewing, Mendocino Spirits & Gowan’s Cider. A raffle and Boontling game will be held to benefit the new wine industry exhibit at the local museum.
The celebration continues on Saturday and Sunday with a diverse range of opportunities at 27 participating wineries (ticketed event pass). In addition to harvest inspired tastings and pairings, many wineries are offering seldom seen or tasted VIP experiences. Historic Navarro Vineyards will be offering a tour of their vineyards and their cellars (rarely open to the public), followed by a preview of new releases paired with harvest bites. Meyer Family Cellars will be offering a tasting of their newly barreled Chardonnay, followed by a taste comparison illustrating the flavor difference between French and American Oak barrels. For those interested in learning about old-world winemaking techniques, SEAWOLF will immerse visitors in an interactive experience with grape berry samples. While guests revel in the panoramic views, natural winemakers Emma and Jesse Hall will discuss harvest decisions, and teach the basics of juice chemistry, coupled with the process of sensory evaluation.
Adding to the weekend, on Saturday night the Mendocino Film Festival will host Cinema in the Vineyard at Pennyroyal Farm, with a Boontling inspired short opening the evening. Wine and harvest fare will be available for purchase from the winery and viewers will enjoy the film in the regenerative vineyard.
Highlighting the season, the harvest celebration complements Anderson Valley’s well established Winter White Wine Weekend and the Pinot Noir Festival in the spring. “Harvest is one of the absolute best times to visit Anderson Valley, and we are thrilled to invite wine lovers to “tidrick” with us! The Friday night Boucherie will be a unique and memorable wine country event that only our community can bring to guests,” says Courtney DeGraff, executive director of the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association. Tickets are now available on the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association website www.avwines.com.
About the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association
The Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association (AVWA) was founded in 1983, the same year as the appellation. Made up of 24 vineyard, 54 winery and 63 associate members, the nonprofit organization operates with the goal of supporting the region’s premier grape growers and wineries, as well as promoting the region’s distinguished wines. In addition to acting as a resource for its members, the association aims to better its community by donating funds every year to local nonprofit organizations.