Wine Events: 'Wine & Fire'; Buttonwood Farm; Melville dinner
'Wine & Fire': The Santa Rita Hills Winegrowers Alliance celebrates its American Viticultural Appellation's 10th anniversary with a weekend of tastings and open houses Friday to Sunday. A Saturday morning symposium will focus on the history of the Santa Rita Hills featuring a panel with some of the region's pioneers who initiated its AVA status. An afternoon "grand tasting" will follow at La Purisima Mission in Lompoc with Pinot Noirs, Chardonnays and several other varieties produced by local wineries and vineyards. Tickets are $100 to $175. For more information and the weekend's full schedule, visit www.staritahills.com.
'All Buttonwood' Farm dinner: Buttonwood Farm Winery's sixth annual farm-to-table twilight dinner is Saturday. [Updated 4:15 p.m.: An earlier version of this post said the dinner is on Sunday.] The event will take place on the 39-acre vineyard sitting atop a riverbank above the Alamo Pintado creek bed in the heart of the Santa Ynez Valley AVA. The dinner will feature farm-raised beef and lamb, farm-grown vegetables and award-winning Buttonwood wines. Tickets are $100 per person. 1500 Alamo Pintado Road, Solvang, (805) 688-3032, buttonwoodwinery.com.
Melville Winery dinner: On Aug. 18, Chad Melville of Melville Vineyards and Winery in Lompoc will head to Mammoth Lakes to pair his wines with dishes by chef Ian Algeroen at Skadi Restaurant. The evening's meal will consist of seasonal produce and ingredients from the restaurant's own Walking Beam Ranch. The dinner will highlight the 2011 growing season and Melville's Estate Pinot Noirs. Seating is limited. To inquire about reservations and cost, contact Skadi at (760) 934-3902. 587 Old Mammoth Road, Mammoth Lakes, (760) 934-3902, skadirestaurant.com.
'In-Focus' tasting: On Aug. 29, the Santa Barbara County Vintners Assn. is hosting a wine tasting event at a|k|a Bistro in Pasadena, followed by two winemaker dinners at a|k|a Bistro and Bistro 45. All four of Santa Barbara County's AVAs will be represented by the 18 participating wineries including Arthur Earl, Babcock, Fess Parker, Hitching Post, Melville, Qupé and Kenneth Volk. The tasting, from 3:30 to 6 p.m., is $16 per person. The subsequent winemaker dinners, beginning at 6:30 p.m., are $60 per person. Reservations may be made by calling (626) 564-8111. For more information, visit www.akabistro.com or www.sbcountywines.com.
Photo: Pinot Noir grapes ripen at Fiddlestix Vineyard overlooking the Santa Rita Hills.
Credit: Spencer Weiner / Los Angeles Times