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40 Years of History – And Sparkling Wine to Celebrate – At the 24th Annual Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival


Philo, Calif., April 17, 2023 – Now in its 24th year, the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival will celebrate the region’s signature grape on May 19-21, 2023. The festival, which pays homage to Anderson Valley’s 40th anniversary as an AVA, takes place throughout Anderson Valley, with the Grand Tasting hosted on Saturday, May 20th, at Scharffenberger Cellars.

Highlights of the three-day event include a reunion and rare opportunity to hear from the region’s early founders. John Scharffenberger kicks off the Technical Conference on Friday, April 19, 2023, and will be joined by Allan Green, founder of Greenwood Ridge and Deborah Cahn, who with her husband Ted, established Navarro Vineyards. This sure to be memorable discussion will take place at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds in Boonville.

“It is truly an honor to be a part of this year’s Technical Conference that brings together the founders of the Valley, who were risk takers and explorers, and bravely came to Anderson Valley and made the Valley a destination for winegrowers, winemakers and consumers,” says Darrin Low, winemaker at Domaine Anderson and head of the 2023 planning committee.

Author Rex Pickett, who put Pinot Noir in the American consciousness with his book and film “Sideways,” is also a Pinot specialist and will add some levity to our technical conference by leading the panel on oak treatment of Pinot Noir. Pickett will also be signing books at the Grand Tasting and around all weekend to share a laugh when you see him.
Hosting the Grand Tasting at the region’s second largest sparkling wine house, the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association looks to highlight Pinot Noir’s significance and history in the Valley in making both extraordinary still and sparkling wine. The Grand Tasting will feature approximately 50 producers pouring Pinot Noir, ranging in style from sparkling to still to rosé. Wineries pouring include Anderson Valley producers, as well as a few dozen Napa and Sonoma producers that source fruit from the region.
In conjunction with the Grand Tasting, Roederer Estate Family of Wines will be hosting the VIP Bubble Lounge, pouring Champagne from the House of Roederer in France and sparkling wines from Roederer Anderson Valley and their Scharffenberger Cellars.

Aside from the Technical Conference and Grand Tasting, other events during the festival include a gourmet sunset BBQ at Lula Cellars and Sunday winery Open Houses throughout the Valley to conclude Pinot Noir Fest weekend. Winery offerings include lamb chops, vineyard tours, library wine, French food, bbq ribs, live music, and more!

Tickets are going quickly but there are still some available. Go to the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association website at www.avwines.com/pinot-noir-festival. More information can be found online, orby contacting the Association via email at info@avwines.com.


Tech Conference: Friday, May 19, 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Cost: $110
Location: Mendocino Fairgrounds, 14400 Highway 128, Boonville, CA 95415
Educational panel discussions, focused tastings, and more, with breakfast and lunch provided. Learn from winemakers, vineyard owners, wine educators, and members of the wine media.

BBQ in the Vineyards: Friday, May 19, 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Cost: $95
Location: Lula Cellars, 2800 Guntly Road, Philo, CA 95466
This year’s BBQ will feature live music and tons of great Anderson Valley wine! Join us in the Deep End amidst the beautiful vineyard at Lula Cellars for tasty BBQ, live music and Lula’s renowned Pinot Noirs, along with special bottles shared by the valley’s winemakers. It will be a night you won't soon forget!

VIP Bubble Lounge: Saturday, May 20, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Cost: $125
Location: Scharffenberger Cellars, 8501 Highway 128, Philo, CA 95466
The Bubble Lounge at the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival is sponsored by the Roederer Estate Family of Wines. Only 75 tickets are available to gain VIP access to this exclusive room on the beautiful grounds of Scharffenberger Cellars in Philo. You can taste wines from Roederer Estate, Scharffenberger Cellars and Champagne Louis Roederer. Snack on caviar and hors d’oeuvres and talk to winemakers and like-minded bubble aficionados while gazing out over the beautiful Scharffenberger Cellars vineyards, just steps from the Grand Tasting event.

Grand Tasting: Saturday, May 20, 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Cost: $175
Designated Driver Ticket: $75
Location: Scharffenberger Cellars, 8501 Highway 128, Philo, CA 95466
Taste world-class Anderson Valley Pinot Noirs, approximately 50 producers and savor perfectly paired with some of Mendocino’s best culinary bites, designed to complement exceptional Anderson Valley Pinot wines. Bid on auction lots for charity and enjoy live music while you sip, nibble and taste your way through the day.

Winery Open Houses: Sunday, May 21, 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Cost: Varies by winery
Location: Throughout Anderson Valley
Meander along Highway 128 and stop at participating winery tasting rooms with the purple flags for a little extra wine tasting, more music, delicious bites, and special wine discounts.

About the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association

The Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association (AVWA) was founded in 1983 – the same year as the appellation. Made up of 25 vineyard, 66 winery and 63 associate members, the nonprofit organization operates with the goal of supporting the region’s premier grape growers and wineries, as well as promoting the region’s distinguished wines. In addition to acting as a resource for its members, the association aims to better its community by donating funds every year to local nonprofit organizations



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