Vintage Beacon Circa 2009: New Ways to Experience Wine

Make it:

scvbeacon logo squareEver been interested in planting your own small vineyard? A reader offered me 6 two-year-old Cabernet Sauvignon plants in pots as well as some cuttings pruned from his vineyard.

Told that they would produce fruit if the ground around them is kept damp for the first year and that 10 to 12 vines could produce 5 gallons of wine, I said sure.   

Taking a tour of the 12 vines they had planted gave me some idea of the process involved.

After writing on the inaugural “Sunset in the Vineyard” last year, benefiting the Assistance League’s programs, I met many local winemakers and was struck by their passion.  It’s a journey I’m not sure I’m up for, so I am interested in your comments.

Walk a Vineyard:

Sonoma Vineyard Walks is a new way to see wine country where visitors can tour private vineyards accompanied by an expert, learn about the local wine industry, and get exercise at the same time.

Program offerings take place in and around the Dry Creek and Alexander Valleys.

A typical Vineyard Walk lasts about 1.5 hours and can be tailored to any activity level and wine interest.

The Vineyard Walks range from $120 per person for a one-day, two-vineyard walk with a group of five to $1800 for an all-inclusive, five-day vacation. Walks take place on five vineyards including Michel-Schlumberger (www. and Quivira ( See for more details.

It’s a new way to see the vineyards and not just the tasting rooms. 

Yours, in wine and out,