Healdsburg's famous Wine Road Barrel Tasting tops the weekend events in and around Healdsburg, and while it's primarily an event that brings out-of-towners into town, it can be appreciated by locals as well. Take it as a chance to "do Healdsburg" and you may find a new favorite wine road, winery, or even wine.
The event is Friday - Sunday this weekend and next, but note it's not a food-and-wine event: pack a lunch and stop at the local country stores for sustenance. The event officially runs 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at over 100 area wineries.
Meanwhile, there's been an underground movement to hijack Barrel Tasting and turn it over to the dogs -- the canine kind, that is.
At popular pinot producer Papapietro Perry's Dogs for Dogs on Dry Creek Rd., they'll be serving hot dogs with their wine tastings, whether or not you're participating in Barrel Tasting. It's in support of Canine Companions for Independence, which places trained dogs with owners who need their assistance in order to live an independent life.
At Mutt Lynch Winery on Limerick Lane, they live up to their reputation with their Wag & Bag Barrel Tasting, this weekend and next. While the winery's ex-racing greyhound Patch (we like that name) makes your pooch feel welcome, you can try the new 2011 "mbf" Primitivo and 2011 "mbf" Charbono wines - that's "man's best friend" to you. Remember Mutt Lynch's motto: Bark Less, Wag More.
Also on Limerick Lane, the venerable Christopher Creek Winery has been purchased by a self-described "bunch of youngins" under the tutelage of Dominic Foppoli, owner of Old Redwood Brewing Co in Windsor. They'll be introducing themselves to Healdsburg's wine-loving community, joining in the Barrel Tasting fun with local bands playing both weekends, including Mr. Healdsburg runners-up Chris Rovetti this Saturday and Brandon Hassur next week.
This would be a good time to segue into local theater with a reminder that "The Hound of the Baskervilles" continues its two-week run up in Cloverdale, which we wrote about last week, as Sherlock Holmes attempts to unravel a mysterious howling on the moors.
While we're on that subject, we can slide into the opening weekend of "The Angel of Chatham Square," the new production at the Raven Performing Arts Theater. It's an expanded version of the one-act play that was staged at the Raven several years ago, with writer Audie Foote adding new characters and dimensions to this "heart-warming tale of salvation on the gritty streets of New York City." It's directed by John DeGaetano, with shows Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 5 p.m.
It's also the weekend for the Alexander Valley Spaghetti Dinner and Auction, one of the most durable of area benefits now in its 57th year. This is in the heart of Alexander Valley at the schoolhouse, and among the buffet is an array of Alexander Valley wines and dishes, $10 for food and $10 for wine, just $5 for kids five and over.
There will also be silent and live auction items including exclusive access to Alexander Valley and Healdsburg winemaker dinners, private tastings, unique accommodations, cooking classes, and more. The proceeds fund computer, foreign language, art and music programs to develop critical skills necessary for AVS children. It starts at 5 p.m. on Saturday.
Do you know of other events in Healsdsburg this weekend, or coming up? Add them to our Events listings and share the fun!