The calm before the gastronomic storm: A harvest lunch setting at Iron Horse Vineyards in Sonoma where I talked with owner Joy Sterling about her very Presidential wines (see Stark Insider TV segment below).

Oenophiles and foodies alike take note. One of our favorite wine events is right around the corner. Sonoma Wine Country Weekend kicks off this Labor Day weekend. Those who have attended past years know it’s an extravaganza of fine wine, gastronomic pleasures including winemaker lunches and dinners, cooking demonstrations, and wine seminars; and all capped off with a harvest wine auction benefiting the local community.

Festivities begin on Friday (August 31) with a series of winemakers lunches. Wineries participating include Deerfield Ranch, Davis Family Vineyard, Hughes Family Vineyards, Landmark Vineyards among many others too numerous to mention (click here for the complete list)

In addition, you have many choices as well for a winemaker dinner that evening.

Highlighted events throughout the weekend include “Sonoma Starlight Supper Club,” which promises an evening of wine, dinner, and music under the stars, poolside at the iconic Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Alexander Valley. Guests, we’re told, “will enjoy a bountiful array of local, seasonal cuisine poolside, prepared by Jeff MallCarlo Cavallo and Josh Silvers, the Sonoma County trio of luminary chefs that comprise Culinary Cuvee.” Over 20 local wineries will be on hand to share their finest Sonoma County wines, creating infinite pairing opportunities (which I intend to fully explore of course).


Wine Country Photos: Dry Creek General Store, Sonoma

Wine as User Experience – Tales from Dry Creek Valley (with Tim Bucher)

No fine wine for you, you damn populist pig!

MacMurray Ranch hosts this year’s annual “Taste of Sonoma” on Saturday (September 1). More than 170 wineries will be pouring thousands of wines (view a complete list of participating wineries here), and over 60 local chefs will be whipping up pairings.

Chateau St. Jean will host the annual wine auction on Sunday (September 2) which features over 35 auction items. Proceeds benefit local charities. In 2011, Sonoma Wine Country Weekend gave $395,385 to local charities in Sonoma County.

If you’ve never been, here’s a preview video below of the sights and sounds of Sonoma. Joy Sterling of Iron Horse Vineyards located in the Green Valley talks about her Presidential bubbly, and I tour the gorgeous grounds.

Team Stark hopes to see you in Sonoma this weekend!

WATCH: Iron Horse Vineyards, Sonoma – Wines of the Whitehouse

San Francisco Bay Area Food and WineSonoma Wine Country Weekend

August 31 – September 2, 2012

Francis Ford Coppola Winery (Sonoma Starlight Supper Club), MacMurray Ranch Winery (Taste of Sonoma), Chateau Ste. Jean (Sonoma Valley Harvest Wine Auction) plus scores of other wineries across Sonoma County.

Winemaker lunches and dinners. Wine seminars. Winery barbecues. Wine tastings including a grand tasting on Saturday. Annual wine auction on Sunday.

Tickets and more information: Sonoma Wine Country Weekend.

Loni Stark is an artist at Atelier Stark, self-professed foodie, and adventure travel seeker who has a lifelong passion for technology’s impact on business and creativity. She collaborates with Clinton Stark on video projects for Atelier Stark Films. It’s been said her laugh can be heard from San Jose all the way up to the Golden Gate Bridge. She makes no claims to super powers, although sushi is definitely her Kryptonite.