What’s New in Sonoma Valley This Fall
Sonoma, CA (September 2023) – Fall is the time to celebrate the bounty of Sonoma Valley. It’s not only harvest, but a celebration of abundance with cultural and outdoor experiences throughout the region. Even getting here is a heightened experience this fall. Sonoma County Airport is now a modernized air terminal filled with upgraded amenities, new facilities, and local artwork embodying the spirit of its namesake, Charles M. Schulz – the beloved American cartoonist, and creator of Peanuts. Meanwhile, the Spa at MacArthur Place has its big reveal – and it’s spectacular.
Arts, Culture & Events
Don’t miss the the blockbuster solo exhibition of one of the Bay Area’s fastest-rising art stars, Ana Teresa Fernández at the di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art. Ana Teresa Fernández: Listen Louder highlights recent painting, film, and social sculpture. Other key public programs include an expanded Halloween Haunt that will feature a haunted house, hay bale maze, maker’s market, and food trucks. Visitors will also have the opportunity to experience the Center’s newly constructed collection storage facility, housing 2/3 of di Rosa’s world-renowned collection of Northern California art.
Visit Sonoma Plaza History to enrich your experience of living in — and visiting — Sonoma. The interactive website brings plaza history to life and encourages a sense of place through pictures, stories and special events. You can even click a pin on their interactive map and watch a video of the significance of that location.
Enjoy a Floral Wand Workshop & Wine Tasting at Bartholomew Estate Winery. Sip a two-glass flight of Estate wines on their picturesque Oak Knoll, then join the Petal Muse in floriography as she guides you through creating a meaningful flower bouquet that transforms into a beautiful, dried keepsake. Offered on Fridays and Mondays through October 26.
Visit Art Escape Sonoma to discover your inner artist and unleash your creativity this fall! A wide array of wonderful workshops for all ages — from backyard art to glassblowing and beyond — await you and your family. Embark on a journey of self-expression like never before.
Wellness & Outdoors
Before heading out to your favorite winery, restaurant or spa, how about a briefing on 12,000 years of history and information about Sonoma’s historical sites via a three-wheeled electric trike? Pushpak Motors, a Trip Advisor experience award winner, offers excursions through colorful Sonoma wine country vineyards and neighborhoods lined with spectacular homes, and stops at various points of beauty and interest. Pushpak’s wine country historic tours start in Sonoma’s historic Plaza. Wine and cheese tastings are optional (but why not?).
MacArthur Place’s outdoor spaces have always been cozy and inspiring but now the revitalized outdoor pool area for rest and relaxation, artful accommodations, and more was revealed in October. The new Spa at MacArthur highlights three new spa suites, tranquil spaces, product lines, therapies and treatments all inspired by the property’s natural setting, connecting guests to the roots of Sonoma.
Experience a unique connection to nature with this immersive forest bathing and estate wine tasting experience at Bartholomew Estate Winery. Certified Nature Therapy Guide Jenny Harrow-Keeler will lead you through the Japanese meditative practice, shinrin-yoku (forest bathing). Afterwards, you’ll be seated on the Oak Knoll for a tasting of wines grown on the winery’s sustainably farmed estate.
Gloria Ferrer Winery in Carneros, with their newly launched morning Walking Vineyard Tour, offers a get-your-day-started experience in their vineyards to examine their exquisite terroir first-hand. Guests also have the option to to extend their visit by adding other signature experiences like their brand new tapas tasting menu.
On October 7, enjoy the special energy of the Benziger Family Glen Ellen Ranch’s annual Harvest Hike and take in the beauty of their Sonoma Mountain Estate. Chris Benziger hosts the hour-long hike and wine tasting. He’ll share family stories, insight into biodynamic farming practices, and details about their many award-winning wines that come from this unique Sonoma Mountain property.
Tasting & Dining
Corner 103, located on the historic Sonoma Square and ranked as one of the top 10 best wineries in the country by USA Today, now welcomes club members and visitors alike. Ready to enchant every palate, Corner 103 is introducing their new food and wine pairing menus. Come savor the magic that only Corner 103 can offer, Thursdays through Sundays.
The Spread at Bart Estate is serving up delicious Mediterranean delights from the acclaimed Spread Kitchen Sonoma at Bartholomew Estate Winery. Relax under the oaks, take in the stunning views and enjoy a beautiful (and photo-worthy) three-tier tiffin paired with a two-glass flight of Bartholomew Estate wine.
Also at Bartholomew Estate Winery, get a close up view of the final phase of the wine growing season during a guided walking vineyard tour. Learn sustainable farming practices as well as the important history of the estate to the California wine industry (hint: it all started right here!) Taste some wines along the way and conclude with a seated tasting.
On Saturday, October 21, Three Sticks Wines celebrates all things fall with their annual event, Home for Harvest. Enjoy an enchanting event filled with Día de los Muertos-inspired festivities and curated bites from local culinary partner, Valley Bar + Bottle. Sample the new vintage of the Casteñada wines and a special pre-release of Gap’s Crown Pinnacle, a Heritage Vineyard Pinot Noir debuting in the spring of 2024, all while listening to beautiful live Spanish guitar.
Bedrock Wine Co. makes wines from an array of old vineyards from around the state, so tastings there are structured to show a breadth of style while focusing on history, particularly that of Sonoma Valley. Experience their reflective view of wine, whether simply tasting delicious or providing great intellectual fodder. Open 7 days a week with appointments starting at 10:00 a.m., with last tastings at 3:30 p.m.
Benziger Family Winery offers Sunset Sips on the Terrace on Thursday, October 26. Bring the family and relax on their terrace during this new after-hours event. You’re invited to savor specially priced wines by the glass or a bottle of one of our favorite seasonal picks as you end your day immersed in the beauty of this special Sonoma Mountain estate. Cheese and charcuterie are available for purchase or bring your own picnic to enjoy.
Ascend 1,500 feet to stunning views high upon the slopes of Bennett Mountain to Coursey Graves Estate. Take in Sonoma Valley’s most serene mountaintop views and indulge in a 90-minute experience that includes Monet-style gardens, barrel-lined wine caves, and private-guided tasting of wines accompanied by artisan cheeses.
Where to Stay
To maximize relaxation, the Kenwood Inn & Spa has completed a multi-phase renovation project. All 31 guest rooms and suites have been remodeled, as well as the property’s peaceful outdoor common areas, including the poolside cabanas.
The El Dorado Hotel & Kitchen is a quintessential wine country experience just steps from the Sonoma Plaza. Enjoy the Kitchen’s seasonal, farm-driven cuisine, inviting private fireplace lounge, relaxing solar-heated pool, and elegant guest rooms designed for comfort.
The weekend of July 26-28, 2024 Nitro will again rumble through wine country when the DENSO NHRA Sonoma Nationals thunder into Sonoma Raceway, The drag races’s tradition of the Friday night session lighting up the sky will kick off this thrilling three-day event.
Mark your calendars for the 27th Annual Sonoma International Film Festival (SIFF). The star-studded event is slated for March 20-24, 2024 at selected venues throughout Sonoma, including the historic Sebastiani Theatre. In addition to the newest features, documentaries, and short films from around the world, you can anticipate buzz-worthy parties, notable culinary experiences, and other special guests and events throughout the festival. Visit the website to sign up for news alerts, SIFF updates and details on the Flash Pass Sale levels and discounted pricing.
News from Sonoma Valley
La Prenda Wines is pleased to announce the release of the new Blanc de Noir from Fifth Hill Wines. The Fifth Hill 2020 Blanc de Noir Methode Traditionelle is now available in their tasting room.
Bartholomew Estates drops the 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon, ‘21 Merlot and ‘21 Rancho Agua Caliente “RAC” Zinfandel. The vintage was one of low yields and exceptional quality, producing red wines with concentration, complexity, and classic flavors. Enjoy them now or age for a decade or more before you pull one out at a special occasion.
Gloria Ferrer put its very first Monarch electric tractor to use on their estate vineyards. This groundbreaking piece of vineyard technology is a game changer for the winemaking team and supports the winery’s goal of reaching zero net emissions by 2050. This “smart tractor” is one of only 10 Monarch tractors currently in service that can operate autonomously and collect massive amounts of data as it travels down the vineyard rows.
ABOUT SONOMA VALLEY, CALIFORNIA
Located in the heart of Northern California wine country, Sonoma Valley is a 17-mile long area
within Sonoma County, and encompasses the city of Sonoma and the villages of Carneros, The
Springs, Glen Ellen, and Kenwood. The birthplace of the state of California, as well as the state’s
wine industry, the year-round destination is home to more than 100 premium wineries, 85
percent of which are family owned.
For more information, visit SonomaValley.com, or follow us on Instagram at @sonoma_valley, and on Facebook at @ExperienceSonomaValley.
Note to editors: Photos of many of the businesses mentioned are available at
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