Garagiste Festival expands to Sonoma County

The Garagiste Wine Festival brings its unique micro-winery events to Sonoma County with the inaugural Garagiste Northern Exposure festival on May 12, in the town of Sonoma in eastern Sonoma County.
Based in Southern California, the Garagiste Wine Festivals celebrate undiscovered micro-wineries who produce handcrafted small-lot wines. The first Garagiste Northern Exposure festival showcases 40 excellent but hard-to-find wineries from Napa, Sonoma, Livermore, Lodi, and Mendocino, with more than 20 different varietals. More than 90 percent of the participating wineries do not have a tasting room, so this is a singular opportunity to taste their wares.

The term “garagiste” originated in the Bordeaux region of France to denigrate renegade small-lot wine makers, sometimes working in their garage, who refused to follow the “rules.” Now “garagiste” represents the cutting edge of small-production winemaking with no rules.

Ticket sales to Garagiste festivals are limited, creating a comfortable, uncrowded experience, and giving guests the opportunity to talk with the winemakers. Admission to the May 12 event will be $85 for early access tasting (1-5 p.m.); $65 for the Grand Tasting (2-5 p.m.); or $115 for early access tasting plus a VIP seminar and boxed lunch (11:30 a.m.-5 p.m.); group discounts are available. Garagiste Wine Festivals is a nonprofit organization that supports scholarships to Cal Poly University in San Luis Obispo.


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