Calendar of Events
EDITOR’S NOTE: To promote your wine event on our Calendar of Events, simply e-mail the specifics about the event to: firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s best to send the information about your event a minimum of 30 days in advance.
Next Episode of “Sommlight” Series
Scheduled for Tuesday, May 18
Make sure to check out the next episode of the Washington Wine Commission’s “Sommlight Series.” Featuring Madeline Puckette, James Beard award-winning author and publisher of the wine blog, “Wine Folly,” the episode will be aired on Tuesday, May 18.
Hosted by the Wine Commission’s Marketing Director David Flaherty, “Sommlight” was launched in July of 2020 as a weekly series of virtual conversations with well-know sommeliers and other wine professionals. Beginning in January, 2021, however, the frequency of episodes was changed to twice a month.
“Sommlight unveils the other side of sommeliers and wine professionals, showcasing their humor, humanity and depth,” Flaherty explains. “Sommeliers are so professional by nature that it’s been fascinating to pull back the curtain a bit, have some fun, and reveal the complexities and unique qualities everyone can relate to,” Flaherty added. “We have an opportunity to showcase some of our favorite people in the wine business that are forging unique paths and inspiring so many of us.”
The “Sommlight” Series is available on every platform, and in multiple forms. While it is primarily run as an IGTV series with episodes ranging from 12 to 16 minutes, you can also experience one-minute teasers on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and even a long-form podcast version of each episode (40+ minutes) on the Sommlight website – www.sommlight.com — through Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
If you have missed any of the 29 episodes that have aired since July 30, 2020, you may watch any or all episodes by visiting the Sommlight website. Following is a list of the nine episodes that have been aired since January 12, 2021.
- Annette Alvarez-Peters – Episode 21 – Aired January 12, 2021
- Alisha Blackwell-Calvert – Episode 22 – Aired January 26, 2021
- Chris McFall – Episode 23 – Aired February 9, 2021
- Beth Hickey – Episode 24 – Aired February 23, 2021
- Lenny Redé – Episode 25 – Airing March 9, 2021
- Wendy Shoemaker – Episode 26 – Airing March 23, 2021
- Kim Cavoores – Episode 27 – Airing April 6, 2021
- Yannick Benjamin – Episode 28 – Airing April 20, 2021
- Nick Davis — Episode 29 — Airing on May 4, 2021
- Madeline Puckette — Episode 30 — Airing on May 18
For more information about the Sommlight series, contact Heather Bradshaw, Communications Director, Washington State Wine Commission at (206) 495-5844 or email Heather at: email@example.com.
Auction of Washington Wines
Announces Line-up of 2021 Events
The Auction of Washington Wines (AWW), a nonprofit devoted to advancing awareness of the Washington wine industry, has announced its lineup of events for the 2021 season. After moving to virtual and online events last year, AWW is maintaining a largely online format in 2021 while bringing back in-person events in smaller, more intimate settings.
This year, AWW will host its annual Private Barrel Auction on April 19 and 20, a Wine & Music Week from May 18-23, and its 34th annual week of August events from Aug. 10-16.
Private Barrel Auction, April 19-20
Kicking off the year of events is the Private Barrel Auction, held virtually this year, with 30 wineries offering five-case lots for exclusive ownership. Look for a series of winemaker interviews via Zoom, hosted by wine expert Dr. Owen Bargreen.
Wine & Music Week, May 18-23
This May, AWW is proud to present its Wine & Music Week, which will take place online and in Washington wine country. The week will kick off with a virtual concert, with additional performances taking place throughout the week. An online auction will offer more than 100 bottle lots as well as regional wine and travel experiences.
For those who wish to experience Washington wine in stunning environs, AWW will host small wine country dinners as current safety restrictions permit, at Fiction@J. Bookwalter Wine and Hightower Cellars Vineyard. Details on the musicians and wineries involved will be announced soon.
In August, AWW will host both an Online Auction and Virtual Gala, providing a variety of experiences for Washington wine lovers. The Online “Silent” Auction from Aug. 10-16 will feature more than 150 auction lots from Washington wineries to include exclusive bottles, wine travel, and culinary and wine experiences.
The main event is the Virtual Gala on Saturday, Aug. 14, which will feature up to 20 one-of-a-kind live auction lots. For the second year, supporters may bring the Gala home by purchasing Gala-in-a-Box dinners from local chefs or special Washington wine bundles to enhance the at-home experience.
New this year, AWW is adding mini-Gala dinners. Luxury winemaker dinners will be held at four premier Seattle-Woodinville area wineries and follow all social distancing and safety regulations. Celebrated local chefs will present multi-course and wine-paired dinner experiences. Each location will boast select live auction lots, exclusive tastings and surprises.
In addition to this news, AWW welcomes Stacy and Greg Lill of Chateau Lill & Lill Family Wines as community co-chairs for 2021. They join co-chairs, Gretchen and John Bookwalter of J. Bookwalter Wines. As co-chairs, they aim to promote the 2021 AWW season of events with the goal of supporting the symbiotic partnership built between AWW, Seattle Children’s and the WSU Viticulture and Enology program.
For more information about AWW and updates about bidding registration, please visit: www.auctionofwawines.org.
About the Auction of Washington Wines
Since its inception in 1988, AWW has raised more than $52 million to benefit Washington State University Viticulture & Enology Research, Seattle Children’s and the AWW Industry Grant. AWW is listed in the top five wine charity auctions in the U.S. by Wine Spectator. AWW’s mission is to support the growth and awareness of the Washington state wine industry through a series of celebrated events benefiting the community.
Walla Walla Spring Release Weekend
Set for Saturday May 8 and Sunday, May 9
Wineries throughout the Walla Walla Valley are gearing up for one of their most anticipated weekends of the year. It’s the Valley’s Spring Release Weekend, scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, May 8 and 9.
This year, because of cautionary measures dictated by the ongoing Coronavirus Pandemic, Spring Release Weekend will play out a little differently than usual. Wineries won’t be able to host large events, but most still plan to hold smaller, individualized experiences.
Winery and tasting room teams throughout the Valley will be crafting special experiences for their guests with live music and food and wine pairings that will showcase their latest releases. You’ll be among the first to enjoy and purchase these newly released wines, many of which can only be found by visiting the wineries and tasting rooms on Spring Release Weekend.
Before you head to Walla Walla to take part in Spring Release Weekend, make sure to call the wineries you plan to visit to find out what their plans are going to be for the weekend and weather or not you’ll need to make a reservation.
For more information about Walla Walla Spring Release Weekend 2021, visit: www.wallawallawine.com/event/spring-release-weekend-2021.
Celebrate Walla Walla Valley Wine
Postponed Again until July, 2022
Walla Walla Valley Wine has announced that it has postponed its signature summer wine event, Celebrate Walla Walla Valley Wine, once again this year. The 2020 Celebrate event was originally postponed to 2021 but will now be held July 14-16, 2022.
The three-day event is made up of grand tastings, educational seminars and winemaker dinners and has been an annual showcase of Walla Walla Valley wine culture since 2013, attracting more than 500 guests each year from upwards of 20 states.
Celebrate showcases a different wine varietal each year. The postponed event was slated to focus on Syrah and will continue to do so next summer.
“The enthusiasm surrounding Syrah continues to gain momentum and Walla Walla Valley Syrah has garnered a world-class reputation for delivering a premium, terroir driven wine experience,” said Robert Hansen, Executive Director of Walla Walla Valley Wine. “We will have to wait a little longer, but we look forward to honoring the varietal in proper fashion when it is safe to do so.”
In light of the postponement of Celebrate, plans are in place for both in-person and virtual opportunities for Walla Walla Valley wine enthusiasts to “celebrate” this July. For those able to travel to the Walla Walla Valley, wineries will host a series of Collaborative Winemaker Dinners throughout the month of July in 2021. The schedule and additional details will be announced in May, 2021 and tickets will be available for purchase at www.WallaWallaWine.com.
In addition, a Celebrate virtual experience will be available to those near and far with avenues to purchase Walla Walla Valley wine and explore the featured varietals of Celebrate – Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot – with friends and family within the comforts of home. More details will be forthcoming and available at www.WallaWallaWine.com in May, 2021.
“The decision to once again postpone Celebrate was a difficult one to make,” Hansen added. “While we are still navigating this new terrain, our hope is that we can provide options for wine lovers, no matter their location, to safely connect with the Walla Walla Valley Wine community and experience the spectacular wines produced in the region. Once we are able to come together again at scale, we look forward to the return of an annual Celebrate event. We invite everyone to mark their calendars for July 14-16, 2022 and join us in the Walla Walla Valley for next year’s event.”
For more information, please visit www.WallaWallaWine.com.
Arbor Crest Wine Cellars Announces
Dates for 2021 Summer Concert Series
Arbor Crest Wine Cellars of Spokane has announced the dates for its 2021 Concert Series. The concerts, which feature well-known as well as up and coming entertainers, are held on Thursday and Sunday evenings throughout the season. It’s your chance to enjoy fresh air, amazing views, and the food and wine you’ve come to expect from Arbor Crest.
The series started on Sunday, May 2 and will continue through the end of September. Following is a list of dates during the month of May.
Sunday Concerts – May 2, Side Step; May 9, One Street Over, Power Trio; May 16, Radio Shine; May 23, Dr. Phil & The Enablers; May 30, Spare Parts.
Thursday Concerts – May 6, Daniel Hall; May 13, Starlite Motel; May 20, Kyle Richard; May 27, Justin James.
The schedule of concerts for the remaining months of June through September can be found by going to: www.arborcrest.com/concerts-1. All guests must be 21 or older and purchase a General Admission Ticket for admittance to the concert grounds. Tickets are $8 for Thursday concerts and $15 for Sunday concerts.
If you want to add a more upscale option to your concert experience, reserved VIP seating is available for each concert, offering you and your guests the comfort of table seating and staffed food and wine service. For more information about the reserved seating option, call the winery at (509) 927-9463, or visit: www.arborcrest.com/concerts-faqs.
Mothers’ Day Market Sip & Shop —
Purple Star Winery – Saturday, May 8
Kyle and Amy Johnson of Purple Star Winery invite you to join them for their annual Sip and Shop Mothers’ Day Market Event on Saturday, May 8. The event, which will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., will be held in the winery’s indoor event center.
Attendees will be able to sip Purple Star’s recent releases and shop all of the artisan vendors participating in the event to find the perfect gift for the moms in their lives.
The event is free, but Kyle and Amy would like you to make a reservation if you are planning to attend. Purple Star Winery is located at 56504 N.East Roza Rd, Benton City, WA. Phone (509) 628-7799.