Autumn is a magical time in Sonoma Wine Country — the culmination of the year-long growing process. The vineyards turn from green to gold to red, providing fall foliage that rivals New England. Fall means the days are mild to hot, but cool nights prevail. Winegrapes are harvested, crushed (more of a gentle press), and loaded into tanks to start the fermentation process.
To truly experience the beauty and complexity of Sonoma Wine Country in autumn, consider the Sonoma County Vineyard Adventures program, offering free, self-guided vineyard tours at Sonoma County wineries. Learn about sustainable grape-growing practices, what goes on in a vineyard during the year, and other interesting tidbits of information.
The vineyard tours are short in length — not more than a mile — and are created for all ages to enjoy. After the walks, you can taste wines from the vineyards. There is no charge for the vineyard tour, but each winery may charge tasting fees.
And fall in Sonoma County is not just about the vineyards and grapes. With the countywide emphasis on farm-to-table eating, restaurants revise their menus to reflect the harvest of autumn vegetables.
Harvest also serves up scrumptious events like the Heirloom Tomato Festival at the Kendall-Jackson Wine Estates & Gardens and the Sonoma Wine Country Weekend. The evenings cool down at the music heats up at the Russian River Jazz & Blues Festival.
Other autumn activities include Sonoma County Art Trails and the Weekend Along Farm Trails. And wine is the star at: Wine Road: A Wine and Food Affair; Fort Ross Harvest Festival; and the Old Grove Festival in the Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve.
For even more autumn options, check our Sonoma County Calendar of Events for current dates and information.