Appetizers
May 7, 2013
Tour foothill wine country for tastes of the Rhone River Valley

foothills.JPGNo need to mount an expedition to the Rhone wine region of France to sample luscious reds, roses and whites, as well as great views such as the one shown here.

Five wineries in the Pleasant Valley area in the El Dorado County foothills will pour their Rhone-style vinos (including syrahs and grenaches) and serve bites at the 10th annual Rocks & Rhones Festival. Save the dates: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., May 25-26.

Hosting will be Holly's Hill Vineyards (www.hollyshill.com), Miraflores Winery (www.mirafloreswinery.com), Narrow Gate Vineyards (www.narrowgatevineyards.com), Sierra Vista Winery (www.sierravistawinery.com) and Auriga Wine Cellars (www.aurigawines.com).

They will match their wines with locally sourced tastes of lamb, pork and beef dishes, wild mushroom ravioli, duck confit, polenta, honey, olive oil and desserts. Also: vineyard hikes, barrel tastings, new releases, arts and crafts, and winemaker discussions and demonstrations. Sign up to win the 100-bottle Mountain of Wine.

Tickets are $35 per day through May 21, $40 at the door (read: whichever winery you visit first). There is no particular order in which to visit the wineries. To buy tickets, and see maps and locations of the wineries, and for more information, got to www.pleasantvalleywineries.com.

To further explore the foothills wine region, go to the Sacramento Bee's wine site at www.sacwineregion.com.

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