Kenwood Press

Serving the communities of Kenwood, Glen Ellen and Oakmont

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Business Beat: 06/01/2009

Business Beat – 5,000 case winery approved

On May 14, the Sonoma County Board of Zoning Adjustments (BZA) approved a use permit for Cassatta Farms to develop a 5,000 case winery at 11300 Sonoma Highway, right at the border of Glen Ellen and Kenwood.

The 75-acre site is planted with 18 acres of vineyard (with plans to plant more) and currently has one residence, one barn, and a 1,344 square foot accessory building that will be converted into a 5,000 case winery. The site is located back from the highway, behind a number of small hills.

Grapes grown on the property will be used for winemaking, and there will be no tasting room or special events.

According to the resolution approving the project, the BZA concluded the project will generate minimal amounts of new traffic, and have negligible impacts on local groundwater supplies.

As a condition of approval, the project must make improvements to the driveway, and the shoulders along Sonoma Highway will be expanded. A traffic study concluded that a left turn lane off the highway was not warranted.

Cassata Farms is owned by Tom Cassata. Any questions about the project can be directed to the Permit and Resource Management Department planner on the project, Jim Maertz, 565-2138, or

New artwork at Wildwood Farm

Sonoma artist Todd Reed is presenting his work now at Wildwood Farm Nursery & Sculpture Gardens in Kenwood.

An avid gardener as well as an accomplished ceramist, Reed’s pieces are designed to hold water or earth. For example, his 10” by 16” footed vessel may serve as a birdbath, or be placed on a table to float flowers or candles.

Each shape reflects the artist’s deep connection to the earth, influenced by ancient architecture. Reed calls his work Vitaso, meaning vessel that holds life.

These pieces would make great wedding, anniversary, or Father’s Day gifts.

Garden galleries are open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays, and 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Wildwood Farm is located at 10300 Sonoma Highway. Call 833-1161 for more information.

Food and Wine pairing at the Mercantile

There will be a complimentary food and wine pairing at From Farm to Table Mercantile on June 6, 2-6 p.m., 13875 Sonoma Highway in Glen Ellen.

All dishes will be made with Vignon Flavor Balancing Seasoning and paired with a selection of Muscardini Cellars wines. The tasty fare includes grilled lamb noisettes, poached Dover sole, and fresh asparagus.

While you’re enjoying the delicious food and wine, you can peruse the many handcrafted items at the Mercantile, as well as wood and iron works, barrel furniture, and culinary gifts.

For more information, call 933-8129, or go to

June Gardening classes at Kenwood Permaculture

On June 20, Kenwood Permaculture presents “Understanding Edibles” – learn how to care for and harvest fruiting trees, shrubs and groundcovers. This class goes from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., with a requested donation of $55.

This workshop is perfect for someone who is ready to install an edible garden, or has taken the Kenwood Permaculture Principles workshop. Topics covered include soil and site preparation, planting, fruit development, thinning, pruning, fertilizing, general maintenance and harvesting techniques. Also discussed will be the ornamental aspects of these plants. Two garden tours are included in this workshop. There will be an hour bring-your-own-lunch break.

The June 21 class is “Glorious California Natives” – an ethno-botany garden tour from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Donation, $45.

Tour the gardens of Kenwood Permaculture with a special focus on glorious California native plants. Discover which plants are terrific bloomers and which provide fodder for the critters around us. Learn how to install and care for these garden gems. Consider the pros and cons of dozens of native plants.

Both workshops are held at Kenwood Permaculture in Kenwood. To register go to Questions? Call Karen Boness at 707-237-2793.

Wine Country Water Summit

A team of water officials, community leaders, and top-level business representatives will present workable solutions for conserving North Bay water resources at the 2009 Wine Country Water Summit on July 16 in the Event Center of Sonoma Mountain Village in Rohnert Park.

Admission to the one-day conference is $200, with early bird pricing of $170 available until June 15.

This event is sponsored by Vineyard & Winery Management Magazine.

The diverse group of experts will address the issues of water quality, supply and demand, conservation, recycling and reuse, flooding, and endangered species. There will be panel discussions and 30-minute presentations. Speakers will include representatives from the Sonoma County Water Agency, Sonoma County Winegrape Commission, Sonoma County Vintners, California Farm Bureau, as well as officials from Sonoma County and the City of Santa Rosa.

To register, go to, or call 577-7700.

Tickets on sale for B.R. Cohn concerts

Tickets for B.R. Cohn’s Charity Fall Music Festival Oct. 3-4 are now on sale.

The big news is that Journey will be the headliner for the Oct. 4 concert. Pablo Cruise is also scheduled that day, with other acts to be announced later. On Saturday, Oct. 3, the line-up includes the Doobie Brothers and Little Feat.

General admission tickets are $95. If you want to go both days, there’s a package rate of $170.

The Festival weekend also includes a charity auction dinner at the B.R. Cohn Winery on Friday, Oct. 2, with chef Bradley Ogden and KCBS food expert Narsai David. Tickets for this event are $125 per person.

Proceeds from the weekend go to a number of charities, including the Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance, Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital trauma center, and the Boys & Girls Club of Sonoma Valley.

To order tickets, go to

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