It is perhaps the best name ever for a wine celebration. Stomp.
Because besides being a Napa Valley harvest party (Stomp those grapes), and playing as a cowboy theme (Stomp those cowboy boots), the 3rd annual Stomp event is the epitome of what every wine-oriented gala should be.
There’s food. There’s wine. There’s live music, and there’s an auction, with chances to bid on great prizes like culinary excursions such as a California fly-fishing trip and a Thanksgiving feast for 12 catered by a fancy chef.
Yet the real reason that Stomp is such a, well, romp, is because it is hosted by the Napa Valley Grapegrowers organization, which means it is attended by the winemakers themselves. Imagine this – guests actually get to interact with some of Napa Valley’s most renowned grapegrowers while drinking some of the world’s best wines.
The Aug. 28 party being held at Hudson Vineyards in the Carneros appellation is already sold-out. Yet there is a wait list, so call 707-944-8311 to get your name added.
For your ticket, you’ll get exhibition-style local cuisine, as chefs cook outdoors and prepare foods to-order like seasonal wood-fired pizzas from Rosso Pizzeria, slabs of whole roasted salmon from Visconte Catering, carnitas tacos from Compadres, and fresh-shucked Hog Island oysters on the half shell.
More than 75 wineries will be pouring, from the new CADE, to the legendary Duckhorn Vineyards. The party starts with live music by a local Mariachi band during the reception, then moves into a show by Red Meat, a honky-tonk band mixing bluegrass, country, western and swing.
And if you’re still not convinced that Stomp caters more to honest-to-goodness grapegrowers than wanna-be glitterati, check this out: there will be sustainability demonstration, showcasing how to best use sheep, bees and raptors in the vineyards for sustainable practices.
The only challenge with Stomp is that on the same evening, there’s another worthy event (maybe you can try to get to both). The 17th Annual Hands Across the Valley fundraising event is scheduled for Aug. 28, at The Ranch Winery in St. Helena.
It’s a tempting diversion, even if just a chance to see celebrity host Rob Schneider (you know, the goof from Saturday Night Live, Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, The Hot Chick, and Grown Ups).
There are actually two parties happening here. For $150 per person, you get banquet table seating and a buffet dinner by Napa chef Kevin Miller (Vintage Estates). For VIP tables of 10 at $500 per person, you get prime seating near the stage and a sit-down dinner prepared by Yountville chef Bob Hurley (Hurley’s Restaurant & Bar).
Proceeds from Hands Across the Valley benefit the Napa Valley Food Bank, Meals on Wheels and other food programs.
Details: STOMP, Saturday Aug. 28, 2010. Hudson Vineyards, 5398 Sonoma Highway Napa. Reception at 6 p.m. Tickets are $150 per person. The event is sold out, but call 707-944-8311 or visit harveststomp.com to get on the waiting list.
Hands Across the Valley, Saturday Aug. 28, 2010. The Ranch Winery, 105 Zinfandel Lane, St. Helena. Reception at 6 p.m. Tickets are $150 or $500 per person. 707-226-6136 or visit handsacrossthevalley.com.
Tip: The best way to enjoy wine-themed parties is to sample as many of the world-class wines as you can. So play it smart, and leave the driving to a professional. Pure Luxury offers great choices, ranging from limos to Town Cars to even charter buses of various sizes for your VIP group.