The next three weekends in June each have a fun wine festival in Southern California that YOU should attend!
First up, on Sunday June 11 from 11:30 (for VIPs) to 4pm is OJAI’s Wine Festival presented by Rotary Club of Ojai-West now in its 31st year! This is Sue’s absolutely most FAVORITE WINE FESTIVAL; she’s attended many many times over the years, and has poured there for Cantara Cellars for the past few years.
Today I had a chance to ask her to give me the top seven reasons why she loves the Ojai Wine Festival so much:
The Top 7 Reasons Sue Loves the Ojai Wine Festival
- It’s in her hometown so not a lot of driving involved; lots of locals attend for this reason.
- The beautiful location of Lake Casitas surrounded by national forest is peaceful and pleasant with cool breezes off the lake and lots of grass and shady trees for your picnic (yes you can bring food in!).
- The people are really nice, fun, friendly, and laid back– both the people pouring and the people attending.
- The VIP tent is worth every penny: Sakura will offer fresh sushi plus other food, there’s places to sit down in the shade to enjoy VIP only wineries and breweries.
- The music is always great to dance to and every one kicks up their heels and dances during the day as well as after the tasting ends.
- THE BOAT! You can go out on the water!
- The Ojai Wine Festival is put on by the Rotary Club of Ojai-West as way to raise funds for various projects for the Ojai Valley — including funding the boat so that local kids can experience a Floating Classroom where they can learn about science and environmental issues.
Over Father’s Day weekend, Saturday June 17, 2017 from 2-6pm and Sunday June 18, 2017 from 1-5pm take your favorite dad or grad to the 12th annual LAWineFest (use promo code DAD17 for a 25% discount!). The LAWineFest brings wines and brews from around the world for you to sample in a fun, relaxed environment in the downtown/arts district area at the very cool ROW DTLA located at 777 S. Alameda St, LA 90021. Market Row is a pretty outdoor lane partially shaded by revitalized 90-year-old warehouses. DJ music and other activities round out the event.
Tickets to LAWineFest are $90 a day ($25 for designated drivers) and includes a commemorative glass, beverage sampling, bottled water, coffee and bread. LAWineFest donates a portion of event proceeds to Sunshine Kids, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing activities, trips and events to young people diagnosed with cancer.
Am I going to LAWineFest? Not this year! That weekend, we’re heading to Live Oak Music Festival, a fundraiser for KCBX, the public radio station in San Luis Obispo. In addition to dancing to fabulous live music like Ozomatli and hanging out under the oak trees with friends, on Saturday afternoon, there’s a pretty incredible wine tasting for a $15 donation. Local wineries donate some really nice juice which winemakers pour backstage for the artists, and they also bring the same wine for the rest of us! I am not going to tell you, but some of the wines poured are VERY small production and very special wines that you can’t buy… because you can’t even get on the list to buy them or you have to have a special appointment to taste them.These wines are also available to buy for $5 a glass– such a deal!
Personally, Live Oak is my favorite wine festival of the year, and I am really excited that Sue and John will be joining us so we will be bringing some great wine to drink in camp with our meals as well! Look for a write up to follow!
The final wine festival this month that I want to share with you is the 30th Annual Santa Barbara Wine and Food Festival held on June 24, 2017 2:00-5:00 PM along the banks of Mission Creek at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History. I’ve never been but have wanted to go for quite a few years now; it just hasn’t worked out.
At the Santa Barbara Wine and Food Festival, enjoy the best of Central Coast wines (with over 50 wineries participating!) as you mingle in the sunshine under the oak trees along the creek with new friends and old, plus winemakers, bakers, and chefs. By participating, you, the wineries, vendors, and volunteers support the Museum’s mission to inspire a thirst for discovery and a passion for the natural world. One hundred percent of the net proceeds from the Wine Festival supports nature and science education for adults and children.
- 1 hour early access to the Wine Festival
- Private lounge
- Two exclusive wineries
- Chef Pete Clements savory bites
- Sparkling wine
Have a great time! Remember to write home!