Three Decades Later: The Annual Taste of Howell Mountain

2014 Taste of Howell MountainIt’s milestone time at the annual Taste of Howell Mountain event, coming to Charles Krug Winery on Saturday, June 14th from 12:00 to 5:00 pm. Come join the party at 2800 Main Street (Highway 29) in St. Helena and indulge in the fabulous wines of Howell Mountain joined with gourmet food pairings, live entertainment, and both Silent and Live Auctions.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Howell Mountain AVA, so come celebrate “30 Years Above the Fog” by indulging (or re-indulging) in the amazing wines from this appellation. Tickets for the event are $125 per person, or $1000 for a Table for Ten, and proceeds from the event will help benefit the Howell Mountain Education Foundation.

Annual Taste of Howell Mountain

Annual Taste of Howell Mountain

There will be at least 35 premium wineries showcasing their wines from Howell Mountain at the event including Arkenstone Vineyards, Bravante Vineyards, Bremer Family Winery, CADE Estate, Cimarossa, Cresta Velia, Dunn Vineyards, Hindsight Wines, La Jota Vineyard Co., Lamborn Family Vineyards, Notre Vin, O’Shaughnessy Estate Winery, Piña Napa Valley, Red Cap Vineyards, Robert Craig Winery, Roberts + Rogers, and W.H. Smith Wines. To see the complete list of participating wineries and/or to purchase tickets, please go here

As in previous years, the Taste of Howell Mountain will feature live entertainment from the high energy blues band The Hummingbirdz during the early afternoon festivities (Walk-Around Wine Tasting, Food Pairings, and the Silent Auction).   Then, at 3:00 pm, the fun moves indoors for the Live Auction (with Desserts and Sit-Down Wine Tastings). Some of the Live Auction items at last year’s event were:

View from Howell Mountain

View from Robert Craig Winery on Howell Mountain

  • The “Mountain Man” Rolls Out the Red Carpet – a combination lunch, tour, and tasting for 6 people hosted by Bob and Lynn Craig, along with a 3L bottle and 3 magnums of Cabernet Sauvignon from the Robert Craig Winery.
  • Artistic Talent in the Bottle and on Canvas – a package of a 3L bottle of Lamborn Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon with an etched, hand-painted, and signed label, six more bottles of 750ml Cabernet Sauvignon, and a giclee painting, all made by Heidi Peterson Barrett.
  • Go Big with Bravante – an opportunity for eight people to enjoy a tour of Bravante Vineyards and a vertical tasting of their 2003 – 2008 wines, along with a 3L bottle, and three magnums of wine.

King of Hearts The Taste of Howell Mountain auctions on June 14 allow you to bid on rare wines, winemaker dinners, tours and tastings, and other recreational opportunities. Or, you can try to beat the odds by purchasing one of only 52 playing cards (at $125 per card) for a chance to win 100 bottles of California Cabernet Society wines valued at $7,575 (including 2005 Titus Vineyards, 2006 Jericho Canyon Vineyard, and 2008 Fontanella Cabernet Sauvignons). To order a card, please call 707-965-2665 (or move quickly when the event starts, as any remaining cards always sell out quickly).

While we love Howell Mountain wines, we are also big fans of the Taste of Howell Mountain event for the food. For 2014, Winery Chefs will once again cater the event and this year’s small bites include favorites from past events such as:

Pimento Cheese and Bacon Sandwich from WInery Chefs

Pimento Cheese and Bacon Sandwich from Winery Chefs

  • The “Masters” Sandwich – Sourdough Griddled Sandwich with Pimento Cheese, Crispy Bacon and Pickled Jalapeños
  • Smoked Duck Tacos with Pickled Beet and Sweet Onion Salad
  • Selection of Grilled Skewers (Cumin and Coriander Marinated Skirt Steak with Salsa Verde, Tandori Chicken with Green Curry Aioli, Sake and Soy Marinated Portabella Mushrooms, and Spanish Skewers with Pork, Chorizo and Lemon)
Cranberry, Orange, and Almond Cookie

Cranberry, Orange, and Almond Cookie

We also encourage you to keep an eye out for the Howell Mountain Cookie Company. This worthwhile organization offers local teens the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the tasks of running a small business (product research and development, manufacturing and distribution, business planning and financial maagement, and community relations). While they’re doing that, their hard work and efforts result in awesome cookies which you can try and buy at the Taste of Howell Mountain event. If you can’t decide, we’ll help you by sharing that our personal favorites are the Coconut Lime, the Everything, and the Cranberry/Almond/Orange Cookies.

Howell Mountain Vintners & Growers AssociationThe Annual Taste of Howell Mountain event is brought to you by Howell Mountain Vintners and Growers Association, promoting the wonderful wines made from grapes grown just “above the fog.” And now, they’ve been doing it for 30 years.

(For something really special, the HMVGA is also offering the option of a VIP Table for Ten for $1500: for more details on VIP amenities and table availability please contact Sam Peters at or call 707-965-2665)



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