The Top 5 Things to Do in Wine Country This Month

Spring ushers in fair weather for outdoor culinary adventures and flea market crawls, and awakens the senses with eye-popping color from farmers markets to art exhibits. Here are our picks for the best things to do in Wine Country this month.

Food, Wine and Design at Ram’s Gate Winery (above)
Located atop a hill overlooking the rolling hills of Carneros, the Howard Backen-designed Ram’s Gate Winery integrates rustic farmstead design with modern sensibility. The intimate courtyard anchors several wine tasting areas that boast panoramic views, 30-foot tall ceilings and breezy, flowing spaces. Inside, the neutral palette, luxe seating and dramatic lighting designed by Orlando Diaz-Azcuy bring elegance to the weathered wood interiors. 28700 Arnold Dr., Sonoma; ramsgatewinery.com.

Sonoma Valley Reserve Weekend
Food and wine pairing stars at Ram’s Gate, so it’s no surprise they are one of four wineries featured for the all-day Food & Wine Pairing tour, one of ten themed wine adventures that make up Sonoma Valley Reserve weekend, May 19 - 20 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  $95 per person per daily tour or $150 per person for both days, includes picnic lunch. reservesonomavalley.com

Chateau Sonoma Flea Market; Photo by Cathy Stancil

French Flea Market at Chateau Sonoma
The essential French antique shop in Wine Country holds their eagerly-awaited annual French Flea Market on May 19 from 10:30 a.m. - 6 p.m., and May 20 from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.  Over a dozen vendors specializing in distinctive French art, antiques and decorative objects will assemble their wares in inspiring vignettes during this very lively, very Parisian outdoor Flea Market. 153 West Napa Street, Sonoma Square; chateausonoma.com.

Afterwards, celebrate your vintage finds with a visit to Sonoma Square’s latest wine tasting room WALT for a taste of their inaugural Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines. 380 1st Street West, Sonoma Square; waltwines.com.

A sneak peek at the Kingston Ellis brocante; Photo by Kingston Ellis

Brocante at Kingston Ellis
On a much smaller scale, the little boutique Kingston Ellis is holding a little tag sale, this weekend, May 12 - 13 from 8 a.m. – 12 pm..  This 'save to splurge' brocante of second-hand and overstock clothing, jewelry, housewares, paper ephemera, art supplies and more is curated to surprise and delight.  After you’re done, visit the main shop next door for au courant fashion, collectibles and curiosities inspired by a well-lived life. The brocante is cash or check only. 122 East Napa, Sonoma Square; kingstonellis.com.

While you’re there, cross the street for more eye-candy in the tasteful atelier of the French Nest for French vintage objects d’art, lighting, home décor, ribbon, soaps, jewelry and fine furniture pieces. 115 E. Napa Street #B, Sonoma.

“Butter Fly” by Marvin Humphries

Miniatures Exhibit at Napa Valley Museum
Gander at the detail of 80 miniature works juried for the exhibit Take a Chance on Miniatures at the Napa Valley Museum, which opened earlier this month.  Art lovers can take a chance on the miniature paintings and sculptures by submitting raffle tickets for their favorite pieces, with winning tickets drawn on June 2.  Curator Jennifer Garden will moderate a conversation with the Northern California artists on May 19 at 2 p.m. Proceeds benefit Napa Valley Museum. Through June 2; 55 Presidents Circle, Yountville; napavalleymuseum.org.

Oxbow Public Market

Explore Oxbow Public Market
The month of May marks the start of the seasonal farmers market next door to Oxbow Public Market. Soak in the eye-popping color of seasonal produce and flowers and shop hand-crafted jewelry from more than 60 farmers, specialty food producers and artisans. 500 First Street, Downtown Napa; napafarmersmarket.com

Inside the BCV Architects-designed Oxbow Public Market, take in the culinary delights of 25 artisanal vendors. If you’re looking for that rare, one-of-a-king epicurean gift for the food lover, shop Heritage Culinary Artifacts or check out the whimsical Parisian café-inspired paintings at La Crepe!  610/644 First Street, Napa, oxbowpublicmarket.com.

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