Birds eye view of the yellow autumn vineyards at Wilson Winery in Dry Creek Valley
Wilson Winery in Dry Creek Valley AVA

Harvest Activities in Sonoma County

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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.

Zinfandel grapes hang on a vine with red-orange leaves in Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County
ZO Wines in Dry Creek Valley AVA

Harvest Tours & Tastings

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.

Honey is drizzled over a fig in Sonoma County
Jordan Vineyard & Winery

Harvest Dining

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. Experience wine country like a local, surrounded by vineyards, barrels, and harvest at Alexander Valley Vineyards for their pizza pairing on Saturdays in September or the the farm to table interactive cooking luncheon at Jordan Vineyard & Winery. Participate in a winemaker or farmer dinner series like the open-air feast under the amphitheater of the Sonoma County night at Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens or the outdoor dinner series at Bricoleur Vineyards.

Harvest Events

If you’ve ever visited Sonoma Valley while the harvest season is in full swing, you know that the air is alive with the electric pulse of myriad hands picking grapes, crush-pads wet with the sticky juice of newly pressed varietals, and the scent of new barrels and pomace permeating the air. Join Muscardini Cellars for a 3-part event including an interactive harvest discussion & demonstration, blending seminar, and harvest lunch.

Or for the ultimate experience for wine lovers, meet owner and winegrower, Tom Meadowcroft, at the Meadowcroft Wines at Cornerstone Sonoma tasting room. Once in the vineyard nearby, you'll be handpicking grapes on a perfect autumn morning, sun glowing overhead, and the sweet fragrance of ripening grapes in the air.

For even more autumn options, check our Sonoma County Calendar of Events for current dates and information.

Get a free visitors guide and map to help you plan your fall harvest activities, and check our listings of travel and lodging deals.