Anderson Valley’s 21st Annual Pinot Noir Festival
The Association’s “lucky 21st” event moves to a historic Boy Scout Camp, adds live auction and more...
Big changes are in store for the 21st annual Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival, to be held May 17-20. The annually sold-out event, hosted by the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association (AVWA), has moved to a new, bigger venue, and now boasts a refreshed line-up of events.
The festival showcases more than 55 producers of Anderson Valley-designate Pinot Noir, Pinot Noir rosé and sparkling Pinot Noir (Blanc de Noirs). Regular festival events like Friday’s Technical Conference and subsequent Casual BBQ, Saturday’s Grand Tasting and Sunday’s Open Houses will continue, but a live auction has been added and the Winemaker Dinner has been reimagined, with all participating wineries in one venue this year.
“We’re extremely excited to host this year’s festival at Camp Navarro, an idyllic site amid towering redwoods at the deep end of Anderson Valley,” said John Cesano, executive director of the AVWA. “Not only will we have more elbow room, but attendees and wineries will be able to stay on-site, creating a more convivial and social event for everyone.”
Camp Navarro is a historic property, sitting amidst 200 acres of redwoods, yet just minutes away from Anderson Valley’s vineyards and wineries. The camp offers a variety of comfortable lodging options, from newly renovated cabins to luxury teepees with queen beds and down comforters. Spaces will also be available for attendees to bring their own RVs or tents. Camp Navarro boasts gorgeous walking trails, swimming holes, hammocks for relaxing and even a coffee shop for designated drivers. Attendees can find more information on the Camp Navarro Web site, at www.campnavarro.com.
The newest event – a compact live auction – will showcase this year’s top lots, from travel to Anderson Valley experiences and, of course, wines! A silent auction will also be held, and both auctions will benefit the Anderson Valley Health Center, the area’s only health care and dental facility.
This year’s Winemaker Dinner will showcase top wineries all in one spot, with winemakers at every table and a sumptuous menu by Camp Navarro’s executive chef. Participating wineries will include: Roederer Estate, Scharffenberger Cellars, Domaine Anderson, Black Kite Cellars, Handley Cellars, Cakebread Cellars, Harmonique and Balo Vineyards. The evening’s five-course menu will include mouth-watering dishes like: escargot Vol-au-Vent with Maitake mushrooms and a confit garlic herbed cream, and roasted tenderloin with jus of Pinot Noir & dried cherry, spinach, roasted asparagus and farro verde, plus much more.
Featured topics at Friday’s technical conference, open to the public as well as media and trade attendees, will include two vineyard-designate tastings, a discussion of red blotch vine replacement, a wine marketing panel and more. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.
Friday’s Casual BBQ will take place at Husch Vineyards – the only off-site event of the weekend. Gourmet barbecue fare by Mendocino Heritage Pork Company, live blues and rock & roll music and special wines brought by participating winemakers will be on offer all night.
Tickets for the 21st annual Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival are now on sale at www.avwines.com. Lodging packages can been booked at Camp Navarro’s website: www.campnavarro.com and a video tour can be found at www.campnavarro.com/video-tour.
Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association
The Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association operates with the goal of supporting the region’s grape growers and wineries, as well as promoting the region’s 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. For more information about the association, or for a list of association members, please visit www.avwines.com.
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
Friday, May 18 – 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $100 ($60 designated drivers)
Friday, May 18 – 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 19 – Noon to 4 p.m.
Cost: $150 (designated drivers $75)
Saturday, May 19 – 6:00 p.m.
Winery Open Houses
Sunday, May 20 – All Day
Combination tickets are available:
• Technical Conference and Grand Tasting: $220
• Wine Down Happy Hour and Winemaker Dinner: $175
• All Event Pass: $475