Here are two events on the horizon at the Old Sugar Mill in Clarksburg you might enjoy. Besides wine, each involves something near and dear to my heart: pet adoption and, in a completely different way, bread and cheese.
The Old Sugar Mill is a feel-good place - a short drive from downtown Sacramento, it seems as if you're way out in the country in a beautifully renovated setting that is ruggedly industrial yet refined. There are six wineries with tasting rooms, as well as a crush facility on the premises.
The first event is called "Pups and Pinot" this Saturday, July 14, from 1-5 p.m. featuring dogs up for adoption from Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary.
As the promotional flyer for the event says, "Love wine? Looking for a furry new family member? Why not combine the two?" Those familiar with Happy Tails know it's a great non-profit, no-kill operation. Its facility at 6001 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento, is open to the public and houses scores of cats in a peaceful setting as they wait to find a new home. Less known is the group's work to adopt dogs.
Adopting a pet is not something to be taken lightly (in fact, people who don't think it through usually give up their animals, thus, the need for groups like Happy Tails). But if you're looking for a dog, "Pups and Pinot" might be a good way to go about it while exploring the wines at the Old Sugar Mill.
The second event is called the "Wine, Cheese & Bread Faire" on July 21 and 22 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Cost is $25 in advance or $30 at the door.
Nine wineries are participating. There will be an artisan cheese tasting, fresh-baked breads, a hands-on cheese making class and a tasting seminar and a picnic area with live music. Chefs will have cooking demonstrations and food vendors will have plenty of tasty offerings.
If you have yet to make it out to the Old Sugar Mill, this event sounds terrific and will give you a good introduction to a place you'll want to revisit.
For more information, visit www.oldsugarmill.com.
Blair Anthony Robertson is The Bee's restaurant critic. Follow him on Twitter, @blarob.