During harvest season, wine is literally in the air. Follow the scent to Napa and Sonoma, now through early October, to celebrate the season's bounty with grape stomps, parties, and as much juice as you can handle.
Peju's annual grape stomp competition will kick off harvest season on August 19th.
(Courtesy of Peju Province Winery)
We've all seen that episode of I Love Lucy. Now's your chance to get your feet dirty.
Harvest season kicks off with Peju Province Winery's (466 St. Helena Hwy., Rutherford) annual grape stomp competition on August 19th (starting at 10:30am). It's a full day of stomping, costume contests, and prizes. Here's an idea: Dress in 1920s garb and go as The Grape Gatsby. The $175 ticket includes a farm-to-table lunch. // Mike Grgich grew up stomping grapes in Croatia. At Grgich Hills (1829 St. Helena Hwy., Rutherford), he's keeping the memory alive. Now through October 29th, you can go to town all day (10am to 3:30pm, $40/person). Once you've smashed your grapes into juice, stamp your feet on a white, souvenir T-shirt and toast the moment. Kids and non-drinkers can stomp for just $25. // Schweiger Vineyards (4015 Spring Mountain Rd., St. Helena) will host two harvest stomps, on September 28th and October 6th. Here you even get to hand-pick your cabernet grapes from the vineyard before your juicy tap dance. The experience ($225/person) rounds out with a wine lunch on the terrace overlooking the vines. // Gather up to 10 of your most athletic friends to compete in one of the country's largest grape stomps, at Castello di Amorosa (4045 St. Helena Hwy., Calistoga) on September 22nd (6:30-10pm). You'll also be treated to a Wine Country barbecue, live music and educational-harvest demonstrations ($125-$145 depending on whether or not you stomp).
Click through for more hands-on harvest experiences...