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Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival aerial view.

Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival May 17-19

By Published On: March 21st, 2024

One Varietal. One Appellation.

Immerse yourself in the Anderson Valley wine scene during the annual Pinot Noir Festival May 17-19, 2024. The festival offers educational seminars, sunset BBQs, LIVE music and the Grand Tasting featuring Pinot, rosé, and sparkling wines.

LIVE music with a beautiful vineyard view during Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival.
LIVE music with a beautiful vineyard view.

Elevate your experience with VIP access to the Bubble Lounge. Explore valley wineries during Sunday open houses for a wine journey in Anderson Valley’s stunning landscape. To learn more, we interview the Board President and Executive Director of the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association.

Why do Pinot Noir lovers enjoy this festival?

Douglas Stewart, Proprietor, Winegrower and Board President of the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association: For many reasons, but most importantly the Pinot Noir Festival focuses on a single varietal from a singular region. Our Pinot Noir is distinct and has a hallmark of bright, cherry component.

Guests enjoying wine at the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival.
Guests enjoying the Pinot Noir Festival.

This festival brings together wines from 50 different producers who pour three or four wines each but all Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley (now including a fair number of sparklers and White Pinots) provides a through line in terms of terroir along with differences in farming, winemaking, age and more.

Pouring sparkling wine at the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival.
Pouring sparkling wine during Pinot Noir Festival.

What can guests expect to WOW them this year?

Courtney DeGraff, Executive Director of the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association: We believe the beauty of this wine festival is unparalleled. The Friday night sunset BBQ will be held in the Deep End of the Valley and set amongst a cluster of vineyard laced hills around Lula Cellars.

Lula Cellars aerial view.
Lula Cellars aerial view.

The very popular bring a bottle to share reveals gems from the cellars of both winemakers and guests alike. On Saturday, guests will be wow’d by the focus of experiencing the diversity in Pinot Noir that can exist from more than 50 wineries. Also, by visiting the chef tables and diving into uniquely Mendocino culinary offerings from both land and sea.

Grand Tasting event at the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival.
Grand Tasting.

What are new and exciting additions to the event this year?   

Courtney DeGraff: With the return of the festival to Scharffenberger Cellars in Philo, a brand new VIP Bubble Lounge was added to the schedule, helping to celebrate the heritage of sparking wine in the region. The lounge is hosted by Roederer Estate, Scharffenberger Cellars and Champagne Louis Roederer with chef bites and cavier offerings and limited to 125 people. 

In 2024, the festival is putting an emphasis on local cuisine and teaming up with some of Mendocino County’s most celebrated chefs.

Food served at Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival.
Enjoy delicious festival bites.

Of note, Chef Ryan Seal of Sacred Rock Inn will make his public debut at the event, after spending most of the last year getting the new restaurant and inn launched and designing a locally sourced menu inspired by his culinary experience at the CIA, Morimoto in Napa, Solage in Calistoga, and the Michelin-starred SPQR in San Francisco.

Chef Ryan Seal of Sacred Rock Inn
Chef Ryan Seal.

At this year’s Technical Conference, the CIA Greystone’s Professor of Culinary Arts Lars Kronmark and Sommelier Traci Dutton will perform a food & Pinot demonstration that is specific to the local cuisine (spoil alert: lamb is guaranteed on the tasting menu). 

Technical Conference.

Share the history of Pinot Fest.

Courtney DeGraff: This year marks the 25th annual Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival. The event began in 1997, missing only two years due to the pandemic. The event’s primary location is Scharffenberger Cellars, held amongst the vineyards and rolling signature hillside of the eastern ridge.

What started as a small grass rooted event has transformed into one of the most important wine events in California, and will welcome more than 700 guests to the Grand Tasting this year. 

Posing for a photo at the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival.
Guests posing for a photo during during Pinot Noir Festival.

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