2011 WINE EVENTS IN LAKE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA

ONGOING

Concerts with Conversations, Upper Lake

Last Saturday each month, January through May

Monthly concert series January – May features live music in an intimate setting with sumptuous hors d’oeuvres and wine. A benefit for the Soper-Reese Community Theatre Fund. An informal concert and dialogue with the artist follows wine, hearty appetizers, and coffee with dessert. 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Tallman Hotel, 9550 Main Street. Reservations are suggested as seating is limited. (707) 275-2244, www.tallmanhotel.com

Tuscan Village Music & Art Series, Lower Lake

Fridays, year-round

Live music every Friday evening by great performers. Food, wine tasting, and arts and crafts. Outdoors in the orchard during nice weather; inside during other seasons. Presented by 2Goombas Deli and Terrill Cellars. $5 suggested donation. Main Street. (707) 252-8444, www.terrillcellars.com

Fondue Friday, Upper Lake

Year-round by reservation

The Lake County Wine Studio (LCWS) offers a selection of fondue pots by 48-hour advance reservation, along with different Lake County wines. LCWS pours wines from more than two dozen Lake County wineries with a rotating tasting menu of eight to 10 wines, with more than 40 wines available for purchase by the bottle. 9505 Main Street. (707) 275-8030, (707)293-8752.

Gregory Graham Winery Vineyard Tours, Lower Lake

Year-round by reservation

Join winegrower Gregory Graham on a one-hour tour of his vineyards and gain first-hand knowledge of the area and what makes his particular vineyards so special. Then it’s back to the tasting room for samples of current release wines while viewing the winery. Weather permitting. Advance reservations required. 13633 Point Lakeview Road. (707) 995-3500, www.ggwines.com

Tallman Hotel Wine Touring Package, Countywide

Year-round by reservation

Guests of the hotel can enjoy this five-hour limousine tour with a personable and knowledgeable driver. Choose from a guaranteed private tour or a shared tour with others, up to eight guests total. Book the tour and a room by contacting the hotel. Gratuity to driver not included. Add picnic lunch box for $20 per person. 9550 Main Street. (866) 708-5253, (707) 275-2244, or www.tallmanhotel.com

Tulip Hill Winery Tours, Nice

Year-round by reservation

Guided tour of the winery’s production of world-class wines offered by reservation only. Admission is free. 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Vines, Mines, and Wines at Six Sigma Ranch and Winery, Lower Lake

Year-round by reservation

Hop into the Six Sigma Ranch Pinzgauer for the rugged accent to the high altitude Diamond Mine Vineyard. Following the vineyard tour, return to the Stage Coach House for a tasting of current Six Sigma releases. Weather permitting. Allow 90 minutes. $125 for up to 10 people or $25 per person. Various other tours available Monday through Friday. 13372 Spruce Grove Road. (707) 994-4068, www.sixsigmaranch.com

Water Tours, Clear Lake

Year-round by reservation

Guests discover the beauty of Clear Lake from the water. Tours include deluxe seating for eight in a 21-foot pontoon boat with canopy and a knowledgeable guide. Tours are customized to guest specification: wildlife and nature, wine tasting, fishing, or sightseeing. Indian Beach Resort, 9945 E. Highway 20, Clearlake Oaks. (707) 998-3760, www.theindianbeachresort.com

Langtry Estate & Vineyards Tour, Middletown

Tuesday through Saturday, year-round, weather permitting

Guided tours of the historic vineyard travel to the higher elevation of Tephra Ridge for spectacular views of Guenoc Valley. Tours are offered Tuesday through Saturday, 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Includes picnic-style lunch in the vineyard and wine tasting. $45 per person. 48-hours advance reservations required. 21000 Butts Canyon Road, Middletown. (707) 987-2385, www.langtryestate.com

Winemaker Dinner Series, Kelseyville

First Tuesday of each month

Each month, the Saw Shop Gallery Bistro features a special menu paired with a local or regional wine on the first Tuesday of each month. Dine al fresco on the wraparound porch or inside where walls of the circa-1902 building are festooned with local art. 3825 Main Street. (707) 278-0129, www.sawshopbistro.com

Meet the Winemaker Series, Upper Lake

Select Thursdays of each month

The Blue Wing Saloon & Café hosts the owner and/or winemaker of one of the great Lake County wineries whose vintages are featured on the wine list on the first Friday of each month. Special menu items for that day are carefully paired with the featured wines. 9520 Main Street. (707) 275-2233, www.bluewingsaloon.com

Meet the Winemaker/Artist, Upper Lake

First Friday and Saturday of each month (except January)

On the first Friday of the month, the Lake County Wine Studio (LCWS) showcases a local winery as the featured tasting for the evening. Local artists – photography, painting, and more – also are featured. 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. $10.00 per person. 9505 Main Street. (707) 275-8030.

First Friday Fling, Lakeport

First Friday of each month

A reception spotlighting artists currently showing in the Main Street Gallery with music, hors d’oeuvres, and wine; student gallery open. Sponsored by the Lake County Arts Council. 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. 325 N. Main Street. Free. 707-263-6658, www.lakecountyartscouncil.com

Specialty Tasting & Tidbits, Kelseyville

First Thursday of the month, May through August

On the first Thursday of each month, Stephanie Cruz-Green, sommelier and owner of Focused on Wine, will offer a specialty wine tasting served with tasty tidbits and wine education pointers. $10 in advance, $12 at the door. 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Focused on Wine, 3940 Main Street. (707) 279-2112, www.focusedonwine.com

Kelseyville Certified Farmers’ Market, Kelseyville

Saturdays, May through October

Local farmers offer their finest, freshest produce, eggs, baked goods, and cheese. Live music. 8:30 a.m. to noon. Steele Wines, 4350 Thomas Drive. (707) 263-6076, www.lakecountyfarmersfinest.org

Concert in the Vineyard Series, Kelseyville

Select Saturdays, May through September

The Moore Family Winery hosts a family-friendly concert in the vineyard series on Saturdays in the summer. Doors open at 5:00 p.m.; concert begins at 5:30 p.m. Bring a blanket or a low-back lounge chair. Wine, food, and soft drinks available for purchase. $15-$30 per person. Kids 12 and under free. 11990 Bottle Rock Road. (707) 738-0507, www.moorefamilywinery.com

Tulip Hill Winery Concert in the Garden Series, Nice

Select Saturdays, June through September

Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy music in the garden. Doors open at 3:00 p.m.; music 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Includes wine tasting with food pairing and admission. Wine also available for purchase by the glass or bottle. 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Local Cuisine Scene at Lake County Wine Studio, Upper Lake

Second Friday of each month, October through April

Features local food and wines of Lake County. Presented by Cache Creek Catering and Lake County Wine Studio. 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. $15 per person. (707) 275-8030. www.cachecreekcatering.com

FEBRUARY

Crab Boil at Moore Family Winery, Kelseyville

February 5, 2011

Be prepared to get messy at the third-annual Crab Boil at Moore Family Winery. Fresh hot crab, potatoes, corn, and artichokes are served straight from a giant pot to your table. The dinner also includes salad, pasta, French bread, and a glass of wine. Wine by the bottle and glass will be available for purchase. Silent auction and a live pie auction to benefit the Cobb Elementary School and The Cobb Elementary Garden Project. Live music and dancing to follow. 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Tickets $65 per person. 21 years and older. 11990 Bottle Rock Road. (707) 738-0507, www.moorefamilywinery.com

Wine & Chocolate, Lakeport

February 19, 2011

Taste ultra-premium Lake County wines – everything from pear sparkling wine to award-winning Syrah and Port – with luscious chocolates and other tasty food bites masterfully paired by certified sommelier Stephanie Cruz-Green, owner of Focused on Wine. Support Lake Family Resource Center programs and services while enjoying wine, chocolate, food, music, wine- and olive oil-related workshops, wine store, and silent auction. Noon to 4:00 p.m. Mt. Konocti Growers, 2550 Big Valley Road. Admission is $35 per person in advance; $40 at the door. (707) 279-0563.

Tulip Hill Winery Food & Wine Pairing and Release Party, Nice

February 19, 2011

Sample new release wines from Tulip Hill Winery expertly paired with scrumptious appetizers. 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tulip Hill Winery, 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

MARCH

Pruning and Pastries at Six Sigma Ranch and Winery, Lower Lake

March 5, 2011

Six Sigma Ranch and Winery hosts the fourth-annual “Pruning 101” from 10:00 a.m. to noon. The Six Sigma Vineyard crew leads a hands-on winter pruning demonstration. $15 per person; pastries, coffee and juice will be served. Reservations suggested. 13372 Spruce Grove Road. (707) 994-4068, www.sixsigmaranch.com

Venetian Carnival Masquerade Party at Rosa D’Oro Vineyards, Kelseyville

March 5, 2011

Wear a mask and enter the contest at the annual Venetian Carnival Masquerade Party, held in the tasting room of Rosa D’Oro Vineyards in downtown Kelseyville. Guests will enjoy food, winetasting, and fun. Prizes awarded for costumes, 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Admission is $5. Rosa D’Oro Vineyards, 3915 Main Street. (707) 279-0483, www.rosadorowine.com

Irish Feast, Kelseyville

March 12, 2011

Enjoy a night of fun where guests will dine on a traditional Irish feast complete with corned beef and cabbage and Guinness chocolate mousse paired with Moore Family wines. Come dance a jig with the live Irish band. $40 per person. 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Must be 21 years old to attend. 11990 Bottle Rock Rd, (707) 279-9279, www.moorefamilywinery.com

Wine Tasting and Art Show, Lower Lake

March 12, 2011

6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., call for information and location. (707) 995-9316.

Kelseyville Olive Festival, Kelseyville

March 20, 2011

This celebration of locally grown olives will introduce guests to the olive oil and olive products produced from Lake County olives. Hosted by Rosa D’Oro Vineyards and the Kelseyville Olive Mill, which is located on a 10-acre olive orchard (formerly the St. Gregory Olive Farm) with 3,000 olive trees. This family-friendly event also features an olive pit spitting contest, as well as olive oil tasting workshops by a certified olive oil taster, food demonstrations, and wine tasting. Benefit for the programs of the Lake Family Resource Center. Admission is free, $10 for wine tasting. Kelseyville Wine Company, 5625 Gaddy Lane. (707) 279-2995, www.kelseyvilleolivemill.com

Festival of Tulips, Nice

March 26, 2011

Seventh-annual event will feature wine, food, and entertainment set amid Tulip Hill Winery’s gardens blooming with 30,000 tulips imported from Holland. Admission includes a Tulip Hill wine glass for unlimited tastings, sumptuous hors d’oeuvres from several upscale Lake County restaurants, live music, winery tours, barbecue and dessert, and demonstrations. Winery tours will be given and guests will get a chance to explore the crush pad, cellar, and bottling room as the tour guide explains the winemaking process. Noon to 5:00 p.m. 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

APRIL

Historic Family Ranch Day Trip: The Wildflower Tour, Clearlake Oaks

April 1 – 30, 2011 by reservation only

Wildflowers are the highlight of April’s daytrips as guests experience a 90-minute narrated mule-drawn wagon ride that meanders through a valley rich with history, wildlife, and other flora and ends with an authentic chuckwagon barbecue, complete with Dutch oven cobbler and complimentary Lake County wine. Eleven Roses Ranch. (707) 998-4471, www.elevenrosesranch.com

MAY

Tulip Hill Winery Food & Wine Pairing and Concert in the Garden, Nice

May 21, 2011

Sample new release wines from Tulip Hill Winery expertly paired with scrumptious appetizers while enjoying live music in the garden. 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Oysters and Sauvignon Blanc, Kelseyville

May 21, 2011

Oysters and Sauvignon Blanc are an undisputed culinary delight. Moore Family Winery will host a feast of oysters both barbecued and raw, along with Sauvignon Blancs from the winery. Admission: free, Oysters: $1 each and wine $5 per glass. 11990 Bottle Rock Road, (707) 279-9279, www.moorefamilywinery.com

JUNE

Release Party at Six Sigma Ranch and Winery, Lower Lake

June 4, 2011

Taste the new releases from Six Sigma Ranch and Winery at this party on the Six Sigma crush pad. Great wines paired with tasty food. Reservations suggested. 13372 Spruce Grove Road. (707) 297-2927, www.sixsigmaranch.com

Tulip Hill Winery Food & Wine Pairing and Concert in the Garden, Nice

June 11, 2011

Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy music in the garden. Doors open at 3:00 p.m.; music 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Admission price includes wine tasting expertly paired with scrumptious appetizers. Wine also available for purchase by the glass or bottle. 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Lake County Home Winemakers Festival, Lakeport

June 25, 2011

Eighth-annual festival for tasting the winemaking efforts of more than 40 Northern California amateurs, as well as those from leading Lake County commercial wineries; tasters vote on their favorites. This year’s venue will be shaded Library Park, on the shores of Clear Lake. Live music sets the mood with plentiful food from local purveyors available. Sponsored by and a benefit for Clear Lake Performing Arts. 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. $15 per person in advance; $20 day of event. Includes a commemorative wine glass and a chance to vote on the winners. Library Park, Park Street. (707) 277-7076, www.clearlakeperformingarts.org

Concert in the Vineyard, Kelseyville

June 25, 2011

Bring the entire family and listen to The Sons of Champlin with Bill Champlin of Chicago playing on the grass, under the stars at Moore Family Winery. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the show begins at 7:00 p.m. Food will be available for purchase. Tickets $25. 11990 Bottle Rock Road, (707) 279-9279, www.moorefamilywinery.com

Lavender Festival at Ceago Vinegarden, Nice

June 2011(exact date TBD)

Each year, the fragrant fields of lavender on the shore of Clear Lake at Ceago Vinegard is harvested and distilled. Join the festivities at Ceago on the shore of Clear Lake and home to the tasting room of Ceago Vinegarden, the organic and biodynamic wine label of Jim Fetzer. The lavender is used to produce essential oils, soaps, and more which are for sale in the tasting room. Small fee. 5115 E. Highway 20. (707) 274-1462, www.ceago.com

JULY

Tulip Hill Winery Red, White & Blush Food & Wine Pairing and Concert in the Garden, Nice

July 2, 2011

Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy music in the garden. Doors open at 3:00 p.m.; music 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Admission price includes wine tasting expertly paired with scrumptious appetizers. Music by TLC featuring Mojo, Neft, and Dubois. Wine also available for purchase by the glass or bottle. 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Music Festival at Moore Family Winery, Kelseyville

July 10, 2010

Set high in the mountains of the Red Hills AVA, the Moore Family Winery hosts a music festival surrounded by stunning natural scenery. Enjoy a variety of live music including blues, rock, and soul along with a variety of foods, arts and craft vendors, and wine tasting. 11990 Bottle Rock Road. (707) 738-0507, www.moorefamilywinery.com

Concert in the Vineyard, Kelseyville

July 30, 2011

Bring the entire family and listen to wonderful music on the grass, under the stars at Moore Family Winery. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the show begins at 7:00 p.m. Food will be available for purchase. Tickets $25. 11990 Bottle Rock Road, (707) 279-9279, www.moorefamilywinery.com

Lake County Wine Adventure Weekend, Countywide

July 30 – 31, 2011

Seventh-annual Wine Adventure offers guests a chance to explore many wines and wineries of California’s Lake County. Eventgoers can sample distinct high-elevation award-winning wines from participating wineries and enjoy tasty hors d’oeuvres. During this two-day, passport-style event, many locations also feature barrel tastings, entertainment, winery tours, wine and food pairings, and other fun and sustainable wine activities. At the end of the Lake County Wine Adventure route, all participants are eligible to enter a raffle drawing. The purchase of a two-day Wine Adventure ticket includes a logo wine glass, tasting booklet, adventure map, and a weekend of fun in fabulous Lake County. Designated drivers are encouraged. 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. each day. Countywide. (707) 355-2762, www.lakecountywineries.org

AUGUST

Blue Wing Blues Festival, Upper Lake

August 5 – 7, 2011

Fifth-annual blues festival in which acclaimed musicians take turns each night on the hotel veranda, performing for a full crowd in a garden setting. A delicious barbecue dinner is served and each night of the festival is sponsored by a different Lake County winery with tasting available. 9550 Main Street. (707) 275-2244, www.tallmanhotel.com

Tulip Hill Winery Food & Wine Pairing and Concert in the Garden, Nice

August 13, 2011

Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy music in the garden. Doors open at 3:00 p.m.; music 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Admission price includes wine tasting expertly paired with scrumptious appetizers. Wine also available for purchase by the glass or bottle. 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Taste of Lakeport, Lakeport

August 19, 2011

Fourteenth-annual winetasting event featuring food, wine tasting, live music, and dancing. Businesses in downtown Lakeport stay open late for the event, which features hors d’oeuvres at the many tasting stations, as well as live music and dancing. Purchase of a tasting ticket includes a commemorative wine glass and a chance to win raffle prizes donated by the local businesses. Presented by Lakeport Main Street Association; a benefit for the revitalization of downtown Lakeport. 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Main Street. (707) 263-8843, www.lakeportmainstreet.com

Concert in the Vineyard, Kelseyville

August 20, 2011

Bring the entire family and listen to wonderful music on the grass, under the stars at Moore Family Winery. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the show begins at 7:00 p.m. Food will be available for purchase. Tickets $25. 11990 Bottle Rock Road, (707) 279-9279, www.moorefamilywinery.com

SEPTEMBER

Concert in the Vineyard, Kelseyville

September 3, 2011

The final event in the Moore Family Winery concert in the vineyard series. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. Bring a blanket or a low-back lounge chair. Food and wine available for purchase. Tickets are $15 per person, children under 12 are free. 11990 Bottle Rock Road, (707) 279-9279, www.moorefamilywinery.com

Tulip Hill Winery Food & Wine Pairing and Concert in the Garden, Nice

September 10, 2011

Bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy music in the garden. Doors open at 3:00 p.m.; music 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Admission price includes wine tasting expertly paired with scrumptious appetizers. Wine also available for purchase by the glass or bottle. A benefit for Operation Tango Mike featuring music by Twice as Good. Tulip Hill Winery, 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Harvest Education, Lower Lake

September 10, 2011

The Six Sigma Winery, Ranch & Vineyard team will lead a demonstration on “Harvest 101”. The event includes various hands-on harvest techniques followed by a light lunch served with Six Sigma wines. $25 per person. Reservations suggested. 13372 Spruce Grove Road. (707) 994-4068, www.sixsigmaranch.com

Lake County Wine Auction, Nice

September 17, 2011

The Lake County Wine Alliance will hold its 12th-annual Wine Auction gala, a benefit for the arts, health, and community of Lake County with live and silent auctions, wine and gourmet foods from local purveyors, and music. Black-tie is encouraged. The Wine Auction begins at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday; tickets are $125 per person. Ceago Vinegarden, 5115 East Highway 20, in Nice. For tickets and information, contact (866) 279-WINE, www.winealliance.org

OCTOBER

Steele Wines Harvest Festival, Kelseyville

October 8 – 9, 2011

Festival famous for its grape-stomping competition for kids and adults, as well as its Vineyard Run for Literacy — a certified 5K/10K run and 5K walk amid autumn-colored vineyards and orchards. Held the second weekend each October, various musicians will perform live both days. Visitors taste the wines of Steele’s extensive collection and enjoy the 4-H Club’s barbecue, as well as a myriad of vendor booths with plentiful food, fine art, arts and crafts, and other unique souvenirs and gifts. A kids’ corner features a storyteller and face painting. 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. both days. Vineyard Run for Literacy will be held Sunday. Steele Wines, 4350 Thomas Drive. (707) 279-9475, www.steelewines.com

NOVEMBER

Tulip Hill Winery Food and Wine Pairing, Nice

November 19, 2011

Celebrate autumn by sampling world-class wines from Tulip Hill Winery expertly paired with scrumptious appetizers. 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tulip Hill Winery, 4900 Bartlett Springs Road. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

DECEMBER

Tulip Hill Winery Open House and Food &Wine Pairing, Nice

December 10 – 11, 2011

Holiday open house at Tulip Hill Winery includes tasty holiday treats, as well as a sale on wines and merchandise. 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tulip Hill Winery, 4900 Bartlett Springs Road, Nice. (707) 274-9373, www.tuliphillwinery.com

Though Lake County is still often referred to as “The Undiscovered Wine Country,” its grape-growing history dates back to the late 1800s with Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino as its next-door neighbors. The influence of the area’s temperate climate combines with the terroir imparted by its distinct volcanic soils to produce ultra-premium winegrapes that have attracted the interest and investment of several famous winemakers. Visitors will experience these award-winning wines poured in casual tasting rooms that reflect the area’s friendly, relaxed lifestyle. Lake County is part of the North Coast AVA, and within Lake County, five other AVAs exist—Clear Lake, Benmore Valley, Guenoc, and the recently approved Red Hills and High Valley AVAs.