10 California Wineries That Pair Sips With Concerts

Is there a dreamier setting for a concert than amid vines and endless wine?

10 California Wineries That Pair Sips With Concerts

Wente Vineyards’ palm-flanked stage

Photo by Eli Pitta

If vino is a prominent part of your summer agenda, make it extra memorable by sipping al fresco (or even under the stars) at a live performance that’s part of a winery concert series. Check out a range of artists from up-and-comers to marquee headliners at these beautiful and unique California winery concert venues.

1. Mountain Winery

Some of the most notable concert lineups in the South Bay take place yearly at Mountain Winery in Saratoga, a breathtaking 2,278-seat venue at a California historical landmark. Optional add-ons include a choice of prix fixe tasting menus or casual deck dining to try before the show. There’s even a special where you’re automatically enrolled in the Mountain Winery Loyalty Club with the purchase of at least four shows, which leads to perks like early access and free tickets.

14831 Pierce Rd., Saratoga | 408-741-0291

2. Gunlach Bundschu

This beloved Sonoma Rhinefarm estate vineyard has two venues for events: a cozy outdoor amphitheater with a lawn and an old redwood barn. You’ll be in the former for such summer shows as Sean Hayes plus Marty O’Reilly & The Old Soul Orchestra (August 5) and Dungen presents The Adventures of Prince Achmed. This year’s stellar lineup extends into the fall, when luminaries like Hope Sandoval and the Warm Inventions (October 8) and Spiritualized (October 16) are scheduled.

2000 Denmark St., Sonoma | 707-938-5277

3. Wente Vineyards

The Livermore Valley’s jewel is Wente Vineyards, where summers mean indulging in a day of winetasting, dinner, and an outdoor concert under the stars where the stage is flanked by palm trees. Upcoming headliners include Joan Jett and the Blackhearts (August 9), Seal (August 16), and Smokey Robinson (August 30). Wente’s annual concert series has been rocking for over three decades.

5050 Arroyo Rd., Livermore | 925-456-2424

4. Rodney Strong Vineyard

Rodney Strong’s annual sonic series keeps the music and wine flowing through September. This year’s lineup brings plenty of celebration potential, with artists like Chris Botti (August 27) and Kool & The Gang (September 9). Choose from reserved seats or kick back on the lawn with your own DIY picnic (or purchase food/wine there) to take in the tunes.

11455 Old Redwood Hwy., Healdsburg | 800-678-4763

5. Vina Robles

Head to Paso Robles for a concert at the boutique amphitheater at Vina Robles, which is bringing in acts such as Slayer (August 8), the Doobie Brothers (August 22), and Idina Menzel (August 27) before summer’s end. If you’re feeling particularly baller, consider a private box suite for your performance of choice.

3700 Mill Rd., Paso Robles | 805-286-3680

Roberty Mondavi Winery's Summer Concert Series

Roberty Mondavi Winery’s Summer Concert Series

Courtesy of Robert Mondavi Winery

6. Halter Ranch Vineyard About 15 miles west of Vina Robles, Halter Ranch Vineyard offers occasional live music nights on a much smaller scale for emerging artists on the Central Coast. Next up: folk duo Bear Market Riot (August 25) and gospel/blues act Burning Bad & Cool (September 15). As at Vina Robles, you get the added bonus of gazing at ample hills.

8910 Adelaida Rd., Paso Robles | 888-367-9977

7. Edna Valley Vineyard

Music inside the Edna Valley Vineyard tasting room is super casual—bring your own low-backed lawn chair or blanket and stay for local music from artists including the aforementioned Bear Market Riot, Black Market Trio, and Dan Curcio.

2585 Biddle Ranch Rd., San Luis Obispo | 805-544-5855

8. Guerra Cellars

A wide variety of tribute acts performs at Guerra Cellars’ venue, Hollister Concerts. Expected highlights include Mirage performing Visions of Fleetwood Mac (August 26), The Long Run taking on the Eagles catalog (September 16) and Journey tribute act DSB supported by Styx homagers Rocking The Paradise. Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto.

500 John Smith Rd., Hollister | 831-902-9106

9. Ironstone Vineyards

Out in Calaveras County, the amphitheater at Ironstone Vineyards plays host to an electric concert lineup, including Steve Miller Band and Peter Frampton (August 13), Willie Nelson and Family with Kasey Musgraves (August 19) and a saxy cooldown with Kenny G and George Benson (September 9).

1894 6 Mile Rd., Murphys | 209-728-1251

10. Robert Mondavi Winery

The lovely lawn at this Napa institution is home to an annual nonprofit Summer Concert Series that benefits the Napa Valley Unified School District Music Program. This year’s program concluded in July (highlights included Patti LaBelle and Ben Harper), but keep it in mind for next year’s calendar.

7801 St. Helena Hwy., Oakville | 888-766-6328

>>Next: Everything You Need to Know About Winetasting in Napa Valley

Tamara Palmer is a daily news writer, rapper confidante, DJ, and celebrity chef ghostwriter from San Francisco.
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