Wine Events at the Heart of Russian River Winters

Before we were blessed with children, we identified as wineauxs. Our domestic and international travel generally revolved around tasting wine in some exciting new wine region. Then kids. Over the years we have developed a few strategies keep the children entertained while we wine taste and we have found some great kid-friendly wineries. But alas, the kids just tolerate our wine tasting adventures and we are generally limited to one or two tasting rooms depending on the kids mood. So one of our favorite things to do is pack the kids off to the grandparents and spend the weekend wine tasting at Winter Wineland!

The Wine Road Podcast yesterday reminded me that Winter Wineland is coming in only one week and inspired me to get a post up highlighting all the great fall and winter wine events in the Russian River area. Most of these wine events are adults only but at the end of the post I highlight a few great kid-friendly holiday wine events that we discovered this year.

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Six Best Winter Activities Along the Russian River with Kids

The Russian River area can be enjoyed by kids and adults all year round, even in the wintertime. You just have to know what to look for and that is why we decided to come up with a list of the six best kid friendly winter activities along the Russian River.

The winter around here is generally mild and it doesn’t snow but it rains a fair amount and has a tendency to be soggy at times. But if you are prepared with some hiking boots or rain boots and some warm layers then you are good to go! However sometimes folks just don’t want to venture out into the muck so I have also included some unique indoor activities you and your family can also enjoy.

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Fresh Dungeness Crab in Bodega, A Holiday Meal to Remember

Turkey, ham, and prime rib may be the meal that comes to mind around the holidays but San Franciscan’s and Northern California chefs know that the easiest way to have an amazingly memorable holiday feast is with dungeness crabs fresh off the boat. Dungeness crab season varies each year but generally runs from  November to June; just in time for Thanksgiving! While I have been scheming for a few years to get a crab pot and try my luck at kayak crab fishing, it just hasn’t worked out. That however, is to my kids benefit because our family traditon has evolved to making a family excursion out to the crab boats where the kids can pick out the fiestiest crabs right from the fishermen.

This year we turned our annual crab feast into a local food holiday get together. We headed up to Guerneville and invited the extended family to stay with us at the Lucky Bend Lookout vacation rental overlooking the Russian River. Between the Russian River Valley wineries, the western Sonoma bakeries, and Bodega commercial fishery we had fresh everything at our table. Read on for our guide on where to get every thing you need including our recipe for reliable steaming. Continue reading “Fresh Dungeness Crab in Bodega, A Holiday Meal to Remember”