Hospices of Sonoma Pinot Noir Barrel Tasting & Auction Presents Pinot Rouge Changes to Big Board Format

SEBASTOPOL, CA – Hospices of Sonoma, America’s largest Pinot Noir Barrel Tasting & Auction, will celebrate its fifth anniversary by changing to a Big Board Silent Auction format this year, a move that event organizers hope will allow more people to have access to the exclusive wines offered at the annual event.
“We’re also hoping it encourages even more spirited bidding,” said Ted Elliott, proprietor of TR Elliot Wines, an event sponsor and trustee of the WCC Charitable Foundation, which organizes the annual event. “In the past, we’ve had a live auction and have required a minimum purchase of five cases. The new Big Board format will allow us to sell in single case lots. We think this approach will be even more attractive to collectors, who will be able to buy a wider array of wines.”
Thirty-five of the very best Pinot Noir producers from the Sonoma Coast, Russian River Valley, Green Valley and Sonoma Carneros appellations will participate in this year’s barrel tasting and auction. Each winery will donate a half-barrel (ten cases) of a one-of-a-kind 2007 vintage Pinot Noir. Winning bidders can specify their choice of bottle size up to 5 liters; all bottles feature the distinctive Hospices of Sonoma label.
This year’s event also has a theme for the first time — “Pinot Rouge,” — to celebrate fine wine and charity. The barrel tasting and auction will be held Saturday, May 3, from 1:00 to 4:30 p.m. at the Santa Rosa Jet Center KaiserAir North Hanger, located at the Charles M. Schulz Sonoma County Airport. Tickets for the tasting and auction only are $150.
The tasting and auction is the centerpiece of a full weekend of related activities. On Friday, May 2, special winemaker dinners will be hosted by DeLoach Vineyards, Dutton Estate, Failla, Freeman & Kosta Browne, Gary Farrell Wines, Halleck Vineyard, Hartford Family Winery, J Vineyards & Winery, Landmark Vineyards, Paul Hobbs Wines and Roessler Cellars. Tickets sell for $150 and seating is limited.
On Saturday after the auction, only 380 seats (total) are available at five Fête du Vin Gala Dinners, hosted by DeLoach Vineyards, Emeritus Vineyards, Keller Estate, Marimar Estate and Olivet Lane Vineyard. Dinner tickets are $250 and can only be purchased in conjunction with a ticket to the auction (total package is $400). The dinners will begin at 6:30 p.m.
The final event of Hospices weekend is La Paulée, a mid-day social, hosted by Lynmar Winery on Sunday, May 4, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Tickets are $150 and can only be purchased in conjunction with a full-day Saturday pass. Attendance is strictly limited to 150 persons.
Proceeds from the auction assist children at risk. Beneficiaries for 2008 are the WCC Charitable Foundation, The Okizu Foundation and The Children’s Village of Sonoma County.
To purchase reservations, go online to www.hospicesofsonoma.org or call 707-823-9463. Early ticket purchase is advised, as last year’s event sold out.
Participating Wineries: Capiaux Cellars, Davis Family Vineyards, DeLoach Vineyards, The Donum Estate, Dutton Estate Winery, Emeritus Vineyards, Failla Wines, Foppiano Vineyards, Freeman Vineyard & Winery, Freestone Vineyards, Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery, Halleck Vineyard, Hartford Family Winery, Iron Horse Vineyards, J Vineyards & Winery, Keller Estate, Kosta Browne Winery, Kutch Wines, Landmark Vineyards, Lynmar Winery, MacMurray Ranch, MacPhail Wines, Marimar Estate, Martinelli Vineyards & Winery, Mueller Winery, Olivet Lane Vineyard, Papapietro Perry, Patz & Hall Wine Company, Paul Hobbs Wines, Roessler Cellars, Rutz Cellars, Schug Carneros Estate, Siduri Winery, TR Elliott and Wild Hog Vineyard.