Cowboy Humor
by Ben Marshall

Bodega Bay Vet
The Duck Club
Duck Club Revisited
FFT Antiques
Cheerios to Romance
Gourmet au Bay
Gravenstein Lions
Mombo's Pizza
Sandpiper Restaurant
Ting Hau Resturant
TLC Tutoring
Vintner's Dinner
Brown Eyes

Central Coast Wineries and Events

Atascadero Wineries
Paso Robles Wineries
SLO Wineries
Templeton Wineries

Central Coast Wine Tasting and Wine Bars

Central Coast
Olive Oil

Central Coast Lodging

Cambria Lodging
Paso Robles Lodging
Pismo Beach Lodging
SLO Lodging
Templeton Lodging

Central Coast Weddings

Central Coast Events

Central Coast Tours

Napa Valley Wineries and Events

Angwin Wineries
Calistoga Wineries
Napa Wineries
Oakville Wineries
Rutherford Wineries
St. Helena Wineries
Yountville Wineries

Napa Valley Olive Oil


La Bodega Kitchen

Stormy's Restaurant, Bloomfield

Underwood Bar and Bistro, Graton

Ruth McGowan's Brewpub, Cloverdale

El Coronel Mexican Food, Sebastopol

Henweigh Cafe, Sebastopol

Rocker Oysterfeller's Valley Ford

GTO's Seafood House, Sebastopol

Terrapin Creek Cafe, Bodega Bay

Sonoma County Wineries and Events

Sonoma Lodging

Sonoma County Tasting Rooms

Cloverdale Wineries
Geyserville Wineries
Glen Ellen Wineries
Guerneville Area
Healdsburg Wineries
Kenwood Wineries
Santa Rosa Wineries
Sebastopol Wineries
Sonoma Wineries

Hook & Ladder Tasting Room

Mutt Lynch Winery

Follow Us on Twitter

Wine Country News, Events and Resources

Wine Country Welcome has information on wineries, tours, weddings, humane organizations, wine caves, day spas, car rentals and much more for those who visit the wine country of Northern California and the Central Coast.

Art Stolen From Downtown Sebastopol

Sometime between Monday afternoon, September 22, 2014 at 1:30 p.m. and Tuesday evening, the 23rd, at 9:15 p.m., three works of art were illegally taken from the walls of Screamin' Mimi's in downtown Sebastopol.

The artwork belonging to Victoria A. Kochergin was being exhibited on the walls of the ice-cream shop as part of Screamin' Mimi's ongoing kindness in helping out local artists.

If anyone in Sebastopol recognizes the works of art displayed displayed below or knows who took them, please call the Sebastopol Police at (707) 820-4400. The robbery is currently under investigation there.

STOLEN ART WORK! click on the flower links below for larger photos.

Stolen Original Dutch Irises
Stolen Dutch Irises
Stolen Canvas Giclee Pink Calla Lily
 Pink Calla Lily
Stolen Canvas Giclee Tulips

We partner with a top car hire company worldwide and have been working with them for nine years, now.

Please give us a chance and compare our car rental prices with others the next time you rent a car.


Second Chance LoveCompassionate Wine Country

Photo Courtesy of Cheri Lucas, Dog Behaviorist.

WCW is dedicated to protecting the welfare of our fellow (and sister) creatures and these include humans as well. We are developing a section on our web site to include all organizations in California who endeavor to do the same.

Call to Action: A hunting group is asking the Bureau of Land Management for permission to use millions of acres of public land for a three-day "predator derby" this winter.

It has come to our attention that a group deceitfully calling itself Idaho for Wildlife (website) is asking the BLM for permission to use millions of acres of public land for a three-day "predator derby" this winter

Here's what their website says:

Heading of Website
Dedicated to the preservation of Idaho's Wildlife

Mission Statement
"To protect Idaho's hunting and fishing heritage. To fight against all legal and legislative attempts by the animal rights and anti-gun organizations who are attempting to take away our rights and freedoms under the constitution of the United States Of America. To hold all Government and State Agencies who are stewards of our Wildlife accountable and ensure that science is used as the primary role for our Wildlife management.

I would take the leap of faith to suspect using science as the "primary role for our Wildlife Management" means Americans should not take into consideration they will slaughter thousands of sentient creatures who have no impact on the ecosystems in Idaho.

This group aims to gather 500 people to slaughter as many predators as they can -- including wolves, coyotes, mountain lions, bears, foxes, bobcats and even weasels -- near Salmon, Idaho this winter. And, at the end of the three days, cash prizes will be awarded to whoever kills the largest wolf and whoever bags the most coyotes.

Weasels? They'd be killing each other.

The kill-fest comes as scientists increasingly worry about killing off predators because they're an incredibly important part of maintaining these wild landscapes. Worse still, there may be some shady connections between Idaho for Wildlife and private interests hoping to use revenues from the derby as bounty fees for those who kill wolves in Idaho year-round.

In addition to the wanton suffering of these beautiful wild creatures, Wine Country Welcome believes such a Kill would send the wrong message to our children.

Please contact the BLM director in charge of possibly authorizing this atrocity and tell him what you think. You may email him at:

BLM website:

Central Coast, Napa and Sonoma Wineries

Please use the navigation tabs to the left to find many of the 400 wineries listed on our website in the Central Coast, Napa and Sonoma. Follow the tabs under "Wine Tasting" and, as you come to each winery, you will see some wineries' tasting fees.

Town pages will each have a list of wineries who offer tastings and their cost. When you find a winery on our site you would like to visit, please contact the winery directly to find out if you will need an appointment. The wineries on our pages offer the full spectrum of choices, from simple tastings to elaborate pairings of fine food and wine.

Wine Country Art Galleries

Women of the Wine Country

Victoria Kochergin, ArtistVictoria A. Kochergin's Botanical Art

Photo: Victoria A. Kochergin, Artist

If charisma is a banjo, Victoria Kochergin's art is a violin.

On a brilliant fall day in early October, I visited Victoria where she works at Joseph Phelps tasting room in Freestone, CA, to taste their wines and talk with this delightful young lady.

I'd met Victoria three years before when the tasting room was pouring Freestone Winery's selections and was enchanted by her charm, completely unaware she was so talented.

I only knew she was nice. Again I saw her a week or so ago pouring Phelps wine at a Bodega Bay Chamber mixer at Osmosis in Freestone.

Victoria does not draw flowers, she finds frail beauty in plants and captures it in colored pencil... read moreRed Amaryllis

Victoria A. Kochergin's botanical drawing, Red Amaryllis was accepted at Filoli Botanical Garden's 16th Annual Botanical Art Exhibit. Congratulations, Victoria.

16th Annual Botanical Art Exhibit at Filoli:

Tuesday, April 8 through Sunday, June 8
Artist Reception: Thursday, April 10, 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

The beautiful Filoli Estate is located in Woodside, California (30 miles south of San Francisco).

Opened to the public in 1976 as a site of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Filoli features a 36,000 sq. ft. home and a 16–acre English Renaissance Garden.

In addition, Filoli's property includes a 6.8 acre Gentlemen’s Heritage Orchard and a trail system that transverses five different ecosystems for docent–guided nature hikes and visits to the Sally MacBride Nature Center.

Filoli is recognized as one of the finest remaining country estates of the early 20th century and is a cherished resource for the community valuing education, volunteerism and diversity.

FiloliFuture Events at Filoli:

Calligraphy Exhibit: Gifts of Nature, Tuesday, June 17 through Sunday, August 24, 2014
Meet the Artists: Saturday, July 12, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and Sunday, July 13, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Summer Garden Sculpture Exhibit: A First-time Exhibit
Tuesday, June 10 through Sunday, September 7
Meet the Artists Days: Saturday, July 12, 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. and
Sunday, July 13, 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., which is combined with the Gifts of Nature Calligraphy Exhibit.

For information on tours, visits and volunteering, visit Filoli's Events page here or please call, (650) 364–8300.

Congratulations, Victoria, from Wine Country Welcome!

Artist's Comments:

"My piece which will be on display is the "Red Amaryllis."

Throughout my life, I have had the pleasure of being gifted flowers, since it was well known that I loved them. However, I had never been given an Amaryllis.

Then the Christmas before last, I was given an Amaryllis by two separate people. I knew at that moment, I was meant to draw one.

Throughout the weeks, I slowly watched it transform from a bulb with a stalk and leaves into a stunning red flower. My intent was to capture its regal character and sense of strength, while simultaneously juxtaposing this with the graceful ruffles of each of its petals.

Therefore each petal was intentionally rendered with intense detail. When the drawing was complete, I felt I had accomplished this and given this beautiful flower the center spotlight it so deserved."

Wine Country Events

Barn Dance and Pig roast at Chanceller's Ranch, Saturday, April 12th 6 p.m. to 11.

Schug Carneros Estate Winery - Wine Tastings $5 - $10 (for a Reserve Tasting)
Tel: 707-939-9363
Tel: 800-966-9365
602 Bonneau Road
Sonoma, CA 95476

Visit us during April in Carneros April 26th and 27th 2014. click here for more information.

Wine Country Weddings

California's wine country provides the perfect venue for weddings. Visit our Sonoma and Napa Weddings page or our Central Coast Weddings page to see what wineries offer on-site services for your wedding or reception.  

Perhaps nowhere else in California offers as remarkable a venue for a wedding as does the Wine Country. Not only does it have world-class hotels and services but it gives your wedding guests a remarkable array of activities to indulge in.

From the Armstrong Redwoods to 78 miles of pristine beaches to the beautiful Central Coast, the California Wine Country really is the best spot to host your events. We also list resources to help the wedding parties find just the right music, photographer, flowers and non-winery venues.

Larson Family Winery Review

If I was asked to tell you what's in Carolyn Craig's wines, I would have to say, "her dreams."

Annie Flournoy at Underwood Bar and BistroUnderwood's Bar and Bistro, Graton

I can't remember exactly what Frank said but we all felt a friendly warm front moving into Graton.

Frank is known for his quick wit and banter so we did expect a good welcome.

What we did not expect was a crush of charisma so smooth we knew immediately this was a bar you could quickly call home.

Patiently, he waited for us to stutter through the bar menu and, when we finally got it together enough to decide what we wanted, quick as a drink he had our oysters, flatbread and lettuce wraps placed carefully in front of us.

When he brought us the eats, Frank lingered just long enough to make everyone feel comfortable and off again he was to drag others at the bar into the party mood ...more

Jim Kelly and daughters at Jacuzzi WineryWine Tasting Etiquette

On caution's side, be careful when driving around the wine country in your expectant state of euphoria.

If you just roll into any old winery and tumble out of your car looking for a good tasting experience, you might find staff a bit grumpy. While many winery's love visitors, some emphatically do not (think Alien vs. Predator).

As mentioned above, the majority of wineries on the Central Coast and in Napa and Sonoma who do allow visitors would like you to give them some advance warning before you come at them like a mob of thirsty zombies.

Most wineries also charge a tasting fee these days. These fees are normally set at a fair price and most fees are waived if you purchase wine.

So do your homework here on WCW before coming to the Wine Country. Again, our individual town pages provide extensive information on wine-tasting fees. Print out the pages and take them with you.

Oh, it's also nice to be seen in public with lovely ladies. I take my daughters (seen above) along to wine tastings whenever I can.

Car Rentals in the Wine Country with CarTrawler

CarTrawler? Who the heck is CarTrawler? Find out here.

The short version is, we have some of the best prices for car rentals in Paso Robles, Santa Rosa, Napa, San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley and around the world. If you're traveling abroad, CarTrawler has over 24,000 car rental locations worldwide.

Please compare our prices with our other quotes on the booking engine at the top of the page.

How to Find a Winery

If you want to browse through all the wineries in Napa or Sonoma, please visit the Town listings for Napa County Wineries Central Coast Wineries and Sonoma County Wineries pages on our website. These winery pages are set up for easy scrolling and we have indicated what wineries have tasting rooms (again, please call them first to confirm tasting fees and appointments).

Central Coast Tasting Rooms and Wine Bars

If you are visiting the Central Coast of California and want to do some wine tasting, you can find information on what wineries have tastings on site and where to find tasting rooms and wine bars in the various towns.

Napa Tasting Rooms and Wine Bars

It's easy to find tasting rooms and wine bars in Napa County because the towns line up from south to north.

Sonoma Tasting Rooms and Wine Bars

Whether it's your first visit to the Wine Country or you are a local, one of the easiest ways to enjoy a variety of wines is at a tasting room or a wine bar. Sometimes, it's hard to tell the difference.

Of course, you can drive around the county looking for wineries offering wine tasting and this can be fun. However, an easier way to find the wine of your dreams is to take a stroll around the towns of Sonoma County and pop into the many available tasting rooms and wine bars.

On our Tasting Rooms and Wine Bars page, we have some photo listings with direct links to websites so you can plan ahead.

Wine Country Hot Air Balloon Rides

Sailing away in a Hot Air Balloon is one of the favorite highs in the Wine Country. Mix fun people, beautiful weather and the feeling of floating away and you get an elixir to rival those enjoyed by kings, moguls, Civil War spotters and Sub chasers.

Clos Pegase statueWine Country Wine Cave Tours

There are close to two hundred wineries in Napa and Sonoma Counties with wine caves. There could be more but, well, they're hidden, you know. We've gathered together a few who do Cave Tours with all their information and links to their web pages.

If you'd like to have an extraordinary wine-tasting experience, we suggest you consider a visit to a Wine Country winery with a wine cave.

Clos Pegase Winery - A Love Story

As you walk through the rooms and wine caves of this balanced estate, you can feel the harmony and grace characterized by their fine wines.

The Cave Theatre is especially beckoning with art lining its grottos and it's been rumored more than one love-struck young man has proposed there.

Wine Country Day Spas

Want to feel pretty (you already are, you know)?

Wine Country Welcome has an extensive list of spas in Sonoma and Napa, including Osmosis Day Spa Sanctuary in Occidental where you can experience a Cedar Enzyme Bath, the only one of its kind in North America.

Skincare, waxing, aroma therapy, it's almost too much to think about.

So don't think about it. Get on up (or down) to Wine Country and pamper yourself.

Wine Country Activities

From the thrills of riding a wine train to suspending high in the redwoods on a zip line, Wine Country has plenty of things to do.

Even Violet Fur Pants knows this and she's all over the Safari West tour in Santa Rosa if her date ever comes to pick her up. Where the heck is he anyway? Doesn't he know she's looking lovely?

Wine Country Event Planners

Sylvia Parkinson from ATL EventsLeft: Sylvia Parkinson
ATL Events

I'm happy to report the All-American Hamburger is alive and well done in St. Helena, California.

The radiant Sylvia Parkinson from ATL Events in Santa Rosa invited me to tag along with her to attend Sutter Home's Build a Better Burger contest in Napa Valley on May 18 to witness the judging of this year's better burgers and my stomach said, "yes."

I love tagging along with Sylvia to new places. It's like entering a dark room with a lantern in your hand. Even if she doesn't know anyone when she arrives, she knows everyone by the time she leaves.

So I savored the ice cream first and dreamt a bit of Vermont until I remembered the 18-below winters there. When I had finished my small cup of paradise, I went to the Burger line with Sylvia and experienced the best moment of the day, Sylvia picking a small bug off a stranger's coat and gently blowing it into the breeze... more

Take a Tour on the Wine Side

When visiting wineries in the Wine Country, we highly recommend booking a tour. There are plenty of them available. Just check with your hotel when booking a room or visit the local chambers of commerce for free coupons.

Back in the old days (the '70's), we used to drive our VW's into Napa Valley and see how many wineries we could hit in an afternoon.

In that geological period, most tastings were free and, although we bought plenty of fine bottles of happiness to take home with us, we certainly drank more wine than we should have as we continued on our merry way.

You can't do that today and, let's be honest, it was pretty stupid to do it back then. But we were young and, well, we were stupid.

You can experience so much more when you take a Central Coast, Sonoma or Napa Valley winery tour. On a winery tour, you are availed a good amount of local knowledge and more time to enjoy the day with your fellow thrill seekers.

Thank you for taking a little time to visit our website. We especially welcome our Irish and other European visitors from Tour Clare. Tour Clare is our travel website out of Ireland with resources and tours throughout Europe.

Drop me a line if you would like to have your winery, your posh hotel or your apple-dumpling B&B listed on WCW. We'd love to hear from you.

Jim Kelly
Wine Country Welcome

Wine Country Welcome - Sebastopol, CA

San Diego Omni Hotel

Charles M. Schulz Museum

Ting Hou Chinese

Food For Thought Antiques

Cafe Claudio

Hole in the Wall Restaurant

Andy's Produce Market

Clover Stornetta Dairy

Fircrest Market

Oliver's Markets

Hannah Rose Miller, Sebastopol Artist

Tomales Bay Oyster Company

Wine Country Activities

Wine Country Wine Cave Tours

Wine Country Hot Air Balloon Rides

California Wine Country Tours

Napa Valley Tasting Rooms

Sonoma County Tasting Rooms

Wine Country Weddings

Wine Country Event Planning

Lisa Leigh Wedding Photography

Wine Country Wedding Music

Wine Country Wedding Photography

Napa Valley Lodging

Sonoma Lodging

Calistoga Restaurants

Healdsburg Restaurants

Kenwood Restaurants

Valley Ford Restaurants

Napa Restaurants

Santa Rosa Restaurants

Sebastopol Restaurants

Sonoma Restaurants

St. Helena Restaurants

Yountville Restaurants

Caribbean Travel

Travel to Ireland

Sonoma County Olive Oil

Wiine Country Spas Sonoma and Napa

Wine Country This Week

Napa Valley Wine Train - Providing elegant dining at 20 miles per hour.