The Town of Calistoga
For the past few years the town of Calistoga, at the Napa Valley’s north end, has been hosting an incredible Harvest Table. The town blocks off its main street and sets more than 1,000 feet of tables in the downtown center, replete with Old West charm. Nine local restaurants and more than 40 wineries participate to serve what organizers call “an unparalleled culinary experience,” and they’re not kidding. Tickets go on sale in July on Eventbrite for the dinner, which this year takes place on September 11. Even if you don’t get a ticket for the table, an extended public social hour gets you in on local wines and conversation from 4:30 pm to 6pm—just long enough to talk a new [ticket-holding] friend into sharing a tasting plate.
V. Sattui Winery
This winery, which grew out of a business founded in 1885, is known for embracing the fun side of the vine, and so it should come as no surprise that their annual October Crush Party is one of the more popular in the area. They throw open the doors of the winery and give people a behind-the-scenes look at how their wines are made, plus there’s live music and piles of amazing food pouring out of their wood-fired pizza ovens and off their live-fire Tuscan grill. Best of all, there’s an “old fashioned grape stomp” with numerous buckets set up for individuals and couples to crush away. And when you’re done turning your feet purple, you get to enjoy some beauty in your glass—more than 40 wines are on offer to try, each glass getting you a little closer to the dance floor…
Three generations of the deLeuze family operate this winery, which was founded in 1969. Building on a legacy of respected and lauded pours, their Crush Challenge in August is a fun-filled day of great food, cycling and wines. Come harvest time, their Harvest Wine Celebration in November focuses on the bottled stuff and benefits the Boys & Girls Clubs of Napa Valley’s Teen Center.