It’s called Taste of Sonoma. And I finally figured out why. Maybe it’s not rocket science, but, man, yes Taste indeed. With bottles of wine as far as the eye could see, and an abundance of delicious Chef’s samples generously on offer across the beautiful sprawling lawns of the Green Music Center, Taste of Sonoma proved once again to be a top flight affair.

Over the years we’ve attended many events like these in and around the San Francisco Bay Area for Stark Insider. This is the kind of place where it’s easy to get spoiled and take these wonderful experiences for granted. Loni Stark and I never forget to pinch ourselves. For us, at least, Taste of Sonoma ranks right up there with some of the most fun, educational, and possibly indulgent experiences you can find. That list would likely include Premiere Napa Valley, Pebble Beach Food & Wine, and Eat, Drink SF, among so many other events here that could prompt you to believe you’re living in some kind of Norman Rockwell painting.

… we made like Kardashians, sampled many of Sonoma’s incredible wines, nibbled on delicious bites, swayed to some music, then made our way to some informative Wine Talks in the cool hallways of the architectural gem that is the Green Music Center

ALSO SEE: 3 Days in Sonoma short film

As expected on Labor Day weekend in Sonoma, it was sunny and hot (there’s really on two choices this time of year: sunny and hot or sunny and very hot). Fortunately organizers had it all figured out, with plenty of refreshment stations scattered throughout, along with ample supplies of sunscreen. Tip: if you go hats are a must.

So we made like Kardashians, sampled many of Sonoma’s incredible wines, nibbled on delicious bites, swayed to some music (Golden Bell Music), then made our way to some informative Wine Talks in the cool hallways of the architectural gem that is the Green Music Center (located on the Sonoma State University campus). Speaking of Wine Talks, we attended a panel with four winemakers from the newly minted Petaluma Gap AVA. Learning about how the differences of that particular micro climate impacts winemaking, schedules, marketing and the actual styles of wines themselves was interesting to say the least. Kudos to Alexandre Remy (Trombetta Family Wines), Tom Gendall (Cline Family Cellars), Justin Seidenfeld (Rodney Strong Vineyards), and Robert Schermeister (Schermeister Winery) for a thought provoking session.

I’d write more. But I think the photos tell this story best of all (see below for the gallery).

Meantime Loni Stark and I are putting the finishing touches on our new short film 3 DAYS IN PARIS which drops September 13, 2019. /endpromo

My thanks to Loni for being my official Taste of Sonoma model during this shoot — and who managed to even squeeze in some plein air before the gates opened.

And most importantly special thanks to all the hospitable organizers, vintners, Chefs, and volunteers who make Taste of Sonoma an incredible, don’t-miss event that brings this vibrant community together every year.

IN PHOTOS: Taste of Sonoma

Photos by Clinton Stark

WATCH: 3 Days in Sonoma

A short film by Clinton and Loni Stark. Now Playing. Stark Insider.

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