Pleasanton Weekly

Arts & Entertainment - September 2, 2011

Celebrate California wines in September

Livermore Valley Harvest Wine Celebration holding 30th harvest celebration

Break out the sparkling wine -- Gov. Jerry Brown has proclaimed September as California Wine Month, according to Wine Institute and California Association of Winegrape Growers. This marks the seventh year that the California government has recognized the wine industry and its contribution to the state with its many wineries, grape growers and vintners.

Locally, the Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association is hosting its 30th Harvest Wine Celebration this weekend. Between noon and 5 p.m., Sunday-Monday, Sept. 4-5, wineries will offer Livermore Valley's best wine, food, art and music to ticket holders.

On Sunday, guests are invited to ride shuttle buses between winery locations. The buses will travel three different routes, each serving six to 11 wineries. Free parking will be available at Robertson Park in Livermore, where guests can board buses and transfer between routes during the day.

Bus stops may be as far as 300 feet from winery locations, so guests riding buses must be prepared to walk up driveways.

On Monday, guests will enjoy a more intimate affair, as wineries offer different wine experiences, such as winemaking demonstrations or tasting of wine varietals, to highlight the experience.

Thirty-two wineries will be pouring at their tasting rooms across Livermore Valley, with artists, musicians and food vendors adding to the festivities. Eleven more wineries will be pouring and hosting festivities at either Concannon Vineyard or Wente Vineyards on Tesla Road.

Food at all locations will be locally prepared and moderately priced (under $8). Admission includes a commemorative Livermore Valley wine glass, tastings of at least two wine varietals from each participating winery, an official event program and discounts on wine purchases.

Tickets are available online at www.LVwine.org, at all participating Livermore Valley wineries, the Wine Steward in Pleasanton, First Street Wine Company in Livermore and Safeway stores.

California has more than 4,600 grape growers and accounts for about 90 percent of wine production in the United States, according to the Wine Institute and the California Association of Winegrape Growers.

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