Wine Country Blog: Innsights to the Wine Country

Sonoma County and Fall's arrival...

Posted by Meilani N on October 01, 2011

Summer is winding down with a crash!  Misty, foggy, almost drizzling morning- had to use my windshield wipers.  Have you ever wondered what we do in the fall here in the wine country?  This weekend is a perfect example of a couple of the wonderful things we have to keep us busy.

The Sonoma County Harvest Fair is this weekend and the weather will be perfect.  One of my favorite events of the year highlighting the wonderful food and wine and harvest time.  Lots of food and activities for everyone...the Grape Stomp Competition is not to be missed.

Harvest Fair Santa Rosa  Harvest Fair Stomp


Beer and wine tasting! (visit the Marketplace and purchase the award winners -
over 250 gold medals - 20% off case purchases)
Wine tasting seminars and Chef demonstrations
Arts and crafts and shopping
Music- from Strolling Dixieland to Jazz
Cows, llamas, and rabbits (oh my!)
Scarecrow building (and unbuilding) contest
Grape Expectoration Contest (it is exactly what you think it is)
Lego building contest
Pumpkin Carving contest
Easy Bake oven bake off
Great American Pumpkin Toss
Haunted Room and Mummy Wrap
and don't forget the Grape Stomp Competition!!

You may not acually see all the winery people there...The wineries are crazy busy with harvest right now and in a bit of panic mode (I think the winemakers are getting a little grumpy). The weatherman is predicting our first rain in months this next week and it can have a serious impact on the harvest. Only about 20% of the grapes are in so far (with this cool summer we've been having) and this whole weekend they will be working non-stop to get as much harvested as possible. Check out the Farmhouse Facebook  page- we had posted a harvest time video from Russian River Wine Road the other day - Such energy this time of year- those big lights all around the county; they start picking in the middle of the night.  And the rumble of grape trucks everywhere! Many of the wineries are having harvest celebrations too- Harvest luncheons and parties all over the wine country this time of year.

Next up...Levi's GranFondo!! 

Levi Leipheimer’s King Ridge GranFondo charity bike ride-A few of our guests here at Farmhouse Inn are participating tomorrow in the 103 mile bike ride out to the coast and all through Western Sonoma County and the Russian River Valley. 7,500 riders will set out from Santa Rosa, California in a start that will strain the edges of the streets. Last year they had 6000 participants and it only took 25 minutes to get them all started. This is not a race, and no awards are given for finishing first. It is an opportunity to push yourself in some of the greatest cycling country this continent has to offer. Best of all? You get to ride with Levi himself!

GranFondo start Levi's GranFondo   GranFondo Sonoma County

The FondoSonoma Festival is located at the Finley Center, event central where riders will Start and Finish the GranFondo. Everyone in the community is invited—the FondoSonoma Festival is free to all, whether you’re riding the GranFondo, waiting for someone to finish the GranFondo, or a local resident who has no idea what the GranFondo is. Something to do while you are waiting for the riders...if you are not participating. 

And a bit more Harvest fun at McClelland Dairy this weekend- actually every weekend in October, if you can make it.  Visit the farm and try your hand at milking a cow- the big but gentle- Dixie, I think.

McClelland Pumpkin Patch Sonoma pumpkin cows 

Free admission includes a visit to the pumpkin patch, petting farm animals and watching cows being milked in the parlor. Not only will you find cows here but the farm also has goats and chickens! There is a farm store featuring other products produced on the farm like free range eggs, European Style Organic Artisan Butter and Lavendar.

Love it...the light is changing and we can feel fall in the air.  That perfect October weather with our nice warm days (we still have some California Indian summer ahead of us) but those "little crispness in the air" evenings. And a spritz of rain now and then to wash the dust off a little.  Colors and flavors are changing -time for red wine in front of a cozy fire and comfort foods!

Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Russian River, Sonoma County, Harvest Fair, Pumpkin Patch, Farmhouse Inn, Granfondo, wine tasting

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