Posts Tagged ‘winery’

Livermore Valley’s Concannon Vineyard, America’s first Irish-American winery, pays homage to the family’s Irish heritage by introducing Concannon Irish Whiskey. The whiskey, aged in casks from the winery’s iconic Petite Sirah has essence of Concannon’s wine.


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Several new and long-standing events will delight visitors and locals across the Tri-Valley this year. The Irish spirit will be celebrated throughout the region’s downtowns and wine country. Here are some highlights of the exciting festivities:

ImageThe City of Dublin hosts its 29th annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration on Saturday, March 17 and Sunday, March 18 in the Civic Plaza. This admission-free event is perfect for the entire family. The festival promises an authentic Irish experience with three stages of entertainment, an Irish tea cottage, carnival rides, crafts and more. The Dublin Lions Club Parade kicks off Saturday at 9:30 am and the Shamrock 5k is Sunday morning. 


Downtown Pleasanton gets the holiday started early with the first-ever St. Patrick’s Day Brew Crawl on Friday, March 16. Enjoy local craft beer and appetizer tastings in at several downtown Pleasanton businesses. Tickets are available online and at several downtown locations for $30 pre-sale and $35 at the door. The last downtown brew crawl sold out in advance, so get your tickets quickly!

Livermore Valley wine country gets in the St. Patrick’s Day spirit with several wineries holding special events. Gold on Greenville Road invites you to taste the Gold Medal-winning wines from the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition at participating wineries on Greenville Road. Bent Creek Winery will showcase its 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon and 2009 Zinfandel Port, Charles R Vineyards highlights its 2009 Zinfandel, McGrail Vineyards & Winery for its 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve and Wood Family Vineyards showcases its 2009 Zinfandel. This is an admission-free event, but a $5 tasting fee applies at each location.


Cedar Mountain Winery and Eagle Ridge Vineyard will also have special Irish-themed events and wine pairings during the weekend.

For a complete list of St. Patrick’s Day events in Pleasanton, Livermore, Dublin, San Ramon and Danville visit the CVB event calendar. Make it a St. Patrick’s Day weekend getaway and book an overnight stay at one of Tri-Valley’s hotels.

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Have you ever wondered what exactly happens during harvest in wine country? How do those grapes get from vine to barrel to bottle to your glass? Livermore Valley’s Wente Vineyards will answer those questions and more during an exclusive Harvest Tour & Tasting on October 1, 2011.

Wente Vineyards offers a unique experience touring and tasting during harvest 2011.

This intimate experience will provide the public a rare glimpse into the harvest and production of Wente Vineyard’s world-class small lot wines. Sample current vintages and select wines aged to perfection from the winery’s library.

The Harvest Tour & Tasting is offered exclusively on Saturday, October 1, 2011 at 10 am, noon, 2 pm and 4 pm. Space is limited and reservations are required.  Tickets are $15 plus tax for Nth Degree and Wine Club members, and $20 plus tax for guests and are available online.

Tours will take place at Wente Vineyards Estate Winery and Tasting Room, located at 5565 Tesla Road Livermore, CA 94550.

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One of Livermore Valley’s pioneering wineries, Concannon Vineyard, was the first winery in America to plant and bottle the Petite Sirah varietal. The rocky soil and warm climate proved to be the perfect environment for the grape 50 years ago.

Livermore wineries plan several events commemorating the 50th Anniversary of Petite Sirah.

Today, the popularity of Petite Sirah is growing at a rate of four times faster than any other varietal. According to Concannon, 95% of all Petite Sirah planted is still in California. While Concannon may have been the first winery to produce the varietal, it is certainly not the only one. Many other Livermore wineries have a history of producing award-winning Petite Sirah.

The summer of 2011 marks the 50th Anniversary of the varietal and the Petite Sirah-producing wineries of Livermore Valley have organized several public celebrations to mark the varietal’s history in the region.

Kicking off the celebration is Petite Sirah on the Rails, a 2-hour train ride on the historic Niles Canyon Railway, featuring Petite Sirah tastings from Concannon Vineyard, Nottingham Cellars, McGrail Vineyards, Charles R Vineyards and Bent Creek Winery. Tickets are $45 per person and include tasting and light food pairings. Tickets are available online .

Next is a Celebration of Livermore Valley’s Shining Star: Petite Sirah! This is a first-ever all Petite Sirah tasting and dinner. The event will be held at McGrail Vineyards on Saturday, July 30 from 6:30-10 pm. 14 wineries are participating and tickets are $75/person. Only 150 tickets are available and may be purchased online.

The winery that launched the varietal, Concannon Vineyard, will host a two-day celebration of Petite Sirah on August 13-14. Guests can enjoy vertical tastings of vintages hand-picked by the Concannon family. Food pairings and cooking demonstrations will pair the wine with Petite Sirah products like chocolates, chocolate sauce and ice cream. There will also be live music and entertainment.

Adjacent to the tasting room at Concannon Vineyard, Underdog Wine Bar, will feature a new Petite Sirah flight honoring Concannon’s Conservancy, Reserve and Heritage Wines. A festive small plate menu will feature tempting dishes like short ribs braised in Concannon Vineyard’s Petite Sirah.

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A myriad of exciting special events and deals await Tri-Valley residents and visitors this Labor Day weekend. Whether you’re looking for cultural events, wine or entertainment, the Tri-Valley has something enticing.

Day of Discovery Festival

Wente Vineyard’s Discover the Wine, Discover the Music series continues with the Day of Discovery Festival on Saturday, September 4 featuring LUCE and numerous Bay Area bands on three stages in the beautiful winery setting. Tickets are $29 in advance and $35 at the door. Children ages 12 and younger are free. Doors open at noon and music begins at 1 p.m. Food, wine and beer will be available for purchase. Tickets are now available by calling the Wente Vineyards box office at 925.456.2424.For more information visit Wente’s website.

145th Annual Scottish Highland Gathering & Games

Named an ABA (American Bus Association) Top 100 Event in North America for 2010, keeping company with internationally known events such as the Parade of Roses and Indianapolis 500, the 145th Annual Scottish Highland Gathering & Games represents another great reason to visit Tri-Valley on Labor Day weekend. Held at the Alameda County Fairgrounds on Saturday, September 4 and Sunday, September 5, the event attracts over 100 clans and over 100 vendors. Organized by the Caledonian Club of San Francisco, the event features athletic and cultural events, entertainment and food vendors. Admission tickets range in price from $10-22 and admission for children 11-years-old and younger is free. For more information and to purchase advanced tickets, visit the Caledonian Club website.

29th Annual Wine Harvest Celebration

Music, food, crafts and wine await attendees of this popular festival held throughout wineries in the picturesque Livermore Valley. More than 40 wineries will take part in the 29th Annual Harvest Wine Celebration benefiting the Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association on Sunday, September 5 and Monday, September 6, held at wineries throughout the region and Robertson Park in Livermore. Attendees will enjoy complimentary wine tasting, music, art & food vendors, vineyard tours and winemaking seminars. Tickets range in price from $10-65 and are currently available for purchase online, at various locations in Livermore and on the day of the event. Be sure to check out the full event schedule. Due to the festival, visitors should note that tasting rooms at participating wineries will be open only to ticket-holders both Sunday and Monday.

Travel Deals

Many other Tri-Valley hotels, restaurants, wineries and shops are also offering discounts and specials for the Labor Day weekend. For more information about any of the packages, discounts and events scheduled for the holiday weekend, visit the Tri-Valley CVB website or text “Wine” to 91904. Facebook fans can also visit the deals section.

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Underdog Wine Bar, Livermore, California.

Underdog Wine Bar in Livermore offers an extensive selection of local and international wines, paired with a complimenting menu of small plates.

Tri-Valley, California and Livermore Valley wine country welcomes a trendy, urban-style wine bar to the scene this summer. Nestled among the rolling hills and situated between the vines at Concannon Vineyard,

Underdog Wine Bar offers patrons something decidedly new and refreshing.

Underdog Wine Bar makes its official debut Saturday, August 14 with a grand opening celebration that will include live music, flavorful small bites from chef Barbara Llewellyn and wine tasting. The event is open to the public and runs from noon to 8 p.m.

An example of the innovative and resonably priced food & wine pairings at Underdog Wine Bar.

Regular offerings at Underdog Wine Bar include an extensive list of local and international wine and a menu of inspired seasonal small plates carefully designed to compliment the wines available by the two-ounce pour, six-ounce glass, flight or bottle.

The shaded outdoor terrace has seating for more than sixty and is the perfect place to spend a warm afternoon enjoying views of the vines, surrounding hills and the historic victorian house on the property. Inside, the wine bar has intimate tables as well as an open common space.

Covered Patio at Underdog Wine Bar, Livermore, CA.

The covered patio offers an inviting lounge feel perfect for spending an afternoon among the vines at Concannon.

Following the grand opening celebration, Underdog Wine Bar is planning ongoing special events,  including music on Friday nights, enticing discounts and offers as well as a monthly spotlight on an individual winery where people can learn and converse with local and international vintners.

For more information about the grand opening and Underdog Wine Bar, visit the website underdogwinebar.com.

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Palm Event Center's braised lamb served on an Arabian pita

The Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association’s annual Taste of Terroir was held last night at the Palm Event Center. 16 of the area’s top wineries and restaurants teamed up to create special food and wine pairings for more than 400 attendees and judges, who awarded winery and restaurant teams for standout pairings.

Special to this year’s event, acclaimed travel author, Thomas C. Wilmer, held a signing for his latest travel guide, The Wine Seeker’s Guide to Livermore Valley.

Top wine critics, Leslie Sbrocco, Jessica Yadegaran and W. Blake Gray served as judges for this year’s event and named winners in several categories. Guests also voiced their opinion in the People’s Choice competition.

Casa Real's Rabbit Terrine, winner of two awards

And the winners from 2010 Taste of Terroir are…

Best Expression of Local Ingredients
Wente Vineyards & The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards

2007 Nth Degree Syrah, Livermore Valley and Nicolau Farms (Manteca) Goat Cheese Panacotta with Black Pepper, Estate Garden Smoked Tomato Jam, Tiny Purple Basil

A sampling of the desserts paired with Livermore Valley Ports

Judges’ Best

Occasio Winery & Izzy’s Steak & Chops

2008 Petite Sirah, Del Arroyo Vineyard, Livermore Valley and Petite Syrah marinated skirt steak served with ragu and bourbon yams

The big winner of the night with the awards for Most Innovative and People’s Choice

Ruby Hill Winery & Casa Real at Ruby Hill:

2008 Estate Reserve Zinfandel, Peacock Patch, Livermore and rabbit terrine inlaid with dried cherry and pistachio, garnished with locally grown herbs and cherry demi-glace jam on butter toasted challah with Estate Reserve Zinfandel-Infused Mustard

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