2024 Sonoma Summit group

2024 International Sonoma Summit

April 28 – May 3, 2024

As part of our Sonoma County Vintners International Export programming, Sonoma County Vintners hosted a group of nine trade and media from the United Kingdom and Ireland for a week of immersive education and connection with our vintner community here in Sonoma County.

With the assistance of our partners at the California Wine Institute, we were able to identify and invite high-level trade, media and retailers. The International Sonoma Summit guests were in Sonoma County for a five-day program including:

  • In-depth master classes across Sonoma County
  • Winery hosted lunches & dinners
  • Interactive multi-vintner events
  • All Sonoma County Barrel Auction events

The International Sonoma Summit Program and Sonoma County Barrel Auction continues to build awareness of the incredibly diverse Sonoma County Wine Region that includes extraordinary vintners who produce unique, distinctive wines.

We welcomed guests to Sonoma County with dinner, hosted by Sonoma County Vintners and Sommelier Christopher Sawyer at John Ash & Co. Guests were introduced to Sonoma County and Sonoma County wines through a multi-course farm-to-table dinner, featuring wines from Iron Horse Vineyards, Rochioli Vineyards & Winery, Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery and Aperture Cellars.

Sommelier Christopher Sawyer uses Sonoma County AVA Map during Welcome Dinner at John Ash & Co.

Day 1, April 29

In partnership with West Sonoma Coast Vintners, the day began with a Masterclass featuring producers and wines from the West Sonoma Coast, hosted at Black Kite Cellars in Freestone. Panelists for this masterclass included Black Kite Cellars, Cobb Wines, Freeman Vineyards & Winery and Peay Vineyards. Following the masterclass, guests were introduced to more West Sonoma Coast Vintners for a collaborative tasting with Alma Fria, Boar’s View, and Balletto Vineyards.

Lunch was hosted by Paul & Kathy Sloan at Small Vines in Sebastopol. Guests enjoyed a delicious homemade lunch, while continuing to learn about the West Sonoma Coast and Sonoma Coast. Following lunch, guests toured the vineyard where they learned about the unique farming practices and winemaking philosophy to produce Small Vines’ wine.

Following lunch, guests headed into Occidental to the Senses Villa, where Co-Founder of Senses Wines Christopher Streiter hosted the group for a tasting and tour of their West Sonoma Coast vineyards.

Dinner was co-hosted by Ernest Vineyards and DuMOL at Grand Cru Custom Crush. Guests did a tasting with Ernest Vineyards, followed by a tasting with DuMOL before sitting down for dinner. Dinner was catered by Marla SR, and guests continued their education with a discussion of cool-climate wines of West Sonoma Coast, Sonoma Coast and Russian River Valley.

Tour of Senses Vineyard

Christpher Strieter, Co-Founder of Senses Wines, host guests for a vineyard tour of one of their West Sonoma Coast vineyards.

Day 2, April 30

The morning began with a vineyard tour at Emeritus Vineyards’ Hallberg Ranch, where guests learned about the impact of sustainable farming practices. Following the tour, and in partnership with Winegrowers of Russian River Valley, guests were hosted for a masterclass featuring Russian River Valley producers. This masterclass featured six producers, from three separate vineyards for a comparison of two producers from one vineyard. Panelists included: Emeritus Vineyards & Scherrer Winery (Hallberg Ranch), Joseph Swan Vineyards & Benovia Winery (Laguna Ridge), and Pellegrini Wine Co & Merry Edwards (Santa Rosa Plains).

Following the masterclass, guests headed to Hartford Family Winery for lunch, followed by a speed tasting with Russian River Valley producers. During the speed tasting, wines were featured from DeLoach Vineyards, Rodney Strong Vineyards, Hartford Family Winery and Ramey Wine Cellars.

After learning about the Russian River Valley, guests then were taken to Alexander Valley to visit Silver Oak for a tour and tasting where they discussed more about sustainability in winemaking and business practices and tasted wines from Twomey and Silver Oak.

Dinner was hosted at Gloria Ferrer in Carneros. The six-course menu was curated by Chef Jason Naaman from Gloria Ferrer and featured wines from Donum Estate, Gloria Ferrer and Schug Winery. Guests had a deep dive into the Carneros AVA, while enjoying wines perfectly paired with each course.

Vineyard tour

Riggs Lokka, Vineyard Manager of Emeritus Vineyards, leads vineyard tour at Hallberg Ranch.

Day 3, May 1

In partnership with Winegrowers of Dry Creek Valley, the morning masterclass featured four Dry Creek Valley wineries showcasing one zinfandel and one unique varietal grown in Dry Creek Valley. Guests learned the history of Dry Creek Valley, and what makes it such a unique growing region. Following the masterclass, Don Wallace hosted the group for a tour of Dry Creek Vineyard’s Endeavor Vineyard.

Lunch was hosted by Mauritson Wines at one of their Rockpile Vineyard locations overlooking Lake Sonoma. Hosted by winery owners Clay and Carrie Mauritson, guests were told stories about generations of farming of the Mauritson Family in Sonoma County and lunch featured traditional carnitas cooked by Mauritson’s Cellar Master, Adrian Reyes. Following lunch, guests were hosted at Arista Winery for a tour and tasting, so guests could continue hearing about multi-generational and family-owned wineries.

Dinner was hosted by BACA & WALT Wines at Valette in Healdsburg. Guests learned about the Hall Family and their impact in the wine industry, while experiencing one of Sonoma County’s iconic restaurants.

Dry Creek Vineyard panel discussion

In collaboration with Winegrowers of Dry Creek Valley, Dry Creek Vineyard hosts a masterclass featuring unique varietals from Dry Creek Valley AVA.

Day 4, May 2

The final masterclass was a panel of four influential women in the Sonoma County wine industry from Cattleya Wines, Rams Gate Winery, Marimar Estate Vineyards & Winery and St. Francis Vineyards & Winery – hosted at St. Francis Vineyards & Winery. This impactful discussion involved a wine tasting and discussion about unique experiences, challenges and triumphs as a woman in the Sonoma County wine industry.

Guests then attended the Lot Tasting Preview Event, as part of the Sonoma County Barrel Auction. The Lot Tasting Preview Event gave guests the opportunity to connect with 70+ vintners and winemakers and to taste through the barrel samples of the auction lots being auctioned the next day.

Dinner was hosted by Seghesio Family Vineyards, on Rattlesnake Hill at their Home Ranch Property. Guests had a pizza dinner overlooking Sonoma County.

Vineyard lakeside tour

Don Wallace hosts group for a tour of Dry Creek Vineyard’s Endeavor Vineyard.

Day 5, May 3

The final day guests attended the Sonoma County Barrel Auction. Energy was buzzing through the room, paddles were raised, and guests got to see the excitement from trade for Sonoma County wines.

Their final dinner was hosted by Dutcher Crossing Winery on their outdoor patio, catered by local catering company Park Avenue Catering. Guests cheered to an incredible week, and expressed their excitement to return home to share all they learned about Sonoma County with their teams and fellow industry partners.

Thank you to all our winery partners who hosted during the 2024 International Sonoma Summit Program – and to Vintners Resort, Hotel Trio and Pure Luxury Transportation!

2024 Sonoma County Barrel Auction_BobMcClenahan

2024 Sonoma County Barrel Auction

Sonoma County Vintners works closely with the California Wine Institute to bring high-level trade, media and retailers to Sonoma County from key international markets around the world. If you are interested in participating in future Sonoma County Vintners’ International Programs, please contact our Trade Relations & International Programs Manager via our contact form.