Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival: Event Showcases the Many Styles of Cold-Climate Pinot Noir
This year’s Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival, to be held May 16-18, will not only showcase Anderson Valley Pinot Noir as we know it, but celebrate the versatility of the grape. More than 45 producers will pour everything from Pinot Noir Blanc to Blanc de Noirs, Vin Gris of Pinot Noir, and more at this 17th annual event.
The Festival, put on by the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association, kicks off on Friday, May 16 with a day-long technical conference aimed at members of the trade and avid Pinot consumers. Conference topics include: viticulture and winemaking in a drought; the multiple personalities of Pinot Noir (from Pinot Noir Blanc to rosé and more); a tasting of Angel Camp Vineyard Pinot Noirs; a presentation by Clark Smith on his book, “Postmodern Winemaking,” and how it applies to Pinot Noir; and more.
The technical conference will be followed by a casual, outdoor barbecue at Foursight Wines, featuring grilled lamb and other delicacies from Bones Roadhouse in Gualala, Calif., plus live music from locals Dean Titus & The Coyote Cowboys. Pinot Noirs from a variety of producers will be on offer to pair with the meal.
After a press tasting on Saturday morning, the grand tasting will again take place in the vineyards at Goldeneye Winery in Philo. The many styles of Pinot Noir on offer will be paired with Karina’s Paella (including a live cooking demonstration), local smoked salmon and sausages from Roundman’s Smoke House, Pennyroyal Farmstead cheeses, wood-fired pizzas from Piacci Pizza, cookies from The Mendocino Cookie Company and other delicious bites. There will also be live music and a silent auction to benefit the valley’s only medical facility, the Anderson Valley Health Center in Boonville.
Participating wineries include: Angel Camp Vineyards, Ardzrooni Family Wines, Balo Vineyards, Baxter Winery, Bink Wines, Black Kite Cellars, Breggo Cellars, Brutocao Cellars, Cakebread Cellars, Champ de Rêves, Chaname Wines, Domaine Anderson, Drew Family Wines, Donum Estate, Esterlina Vineyards, Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery, Foursight Wines, Frati Horn, Fulcrum Wines, Goldeneye Winery, Greenwood Ridge Vineyards, Handley Cellars, Husch Vineyards, Knez Winery, La Crema, Lazy Creek Vineyards, Lichen Estate, LuLa Cellars, Maggy Hawk Wines, Navarro Vineyards, Nelson Hill Winery, Panthea, Philo Ridge Vineyards, Roederer Estate, Saintsbury, Scharffenberger Cellars, Toulouse Vineyards, Twomey Cellars, Waits-Mast Cellars, Wind Racer Wines, Witching Stick Wines, Woodenhead and Zina Hyde Cunningham, with more to come.
On Saturday evening, May 17, local wineries will host three winemaker dinners in Anderson Valley. This year’s dinners include: Navarro, Lichen and Goldeneye at the Boonville Hotel; Roederer, Harmonique and Husch at Roederer Estate; and Handley, Bink and Greenwood Ridge at Handley.
The weekend will conclude on Sunday, May 18 with open houses at Anderson Valley wineries, featuring special tastings, educational talks, music and food (a list of winery open houses will be available at www.avwines.com, closer to the event).
Tickets for the 17th annual Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival go on sale March 15 at www.avwines.com.