Kenwood Press

Serving the communities of Kenwood, Glen Ellen and Oakmont

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Business Beat: 08/01/2010

Anderson proposes 10,000 case winery

High-powered lobbyist and developer Darius Anderson has filed with Sonoma County an application for a use permit to develop a winery on part of his 76-acre property in Kenwood, located at 10420 Sonoma Highway.

The proposal is for a 10,000 case winery on 25 acres of property along Sonoma Highway just south of the Kenwood Inn & Spa. There would be public tasting Wednesday through Sunday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., and up to 25 special events a year, ranging in size from 25 to 200 people.

Access to the winery off of Sonoma Highway would be at the Kenwood Inn & Spa entrance, with a driveway then running parallel to the winery parking lot.

A new building would be constructed for the tasting room, wine storage, and blending activities.

Anderson said that part of the facility would be set aside for displaying his wide collection of items associated with Jack London. Over the last 20 years, Anderson said he has collected over 3,000 different pieces of Jack London Memorabilia.

“I wanted to bring these back to Sonoma County, and I would like the public to have access to them,” said Anderson, who serves on the board of directors of the Jack London Foundation.

The new building would have an architectural style similar to Jack London’s Wolf House.

All crush and bottling activities would take place off site. Anderson said there are currently eight and a half acres of cabernet on the property.

Anderson bought the entire 76 acres in 1999, and first planned on building a home. In 2002, he had preliminary discussions with Sonoma County planners about a winery but never officially filed for a use permit. In 2005, Anderson ran into some problems with some of his neighbors, regarding large parties on the property. At that time, he said he had abandoned the winery plans.

In an interview, Anderson said that personal circumstances had changed since 2005, and he has decided to revive plans for a winery.

Anderson is CEO of the lobbying firm Platinum Investors, which has offices in Sacramento, San Francisco, Orange County and Washington, D.C. Anderson is also a partner in Kenwood Investments, a real estate development firm involved in a number of projects, including Treasure Island.

More locally, Anderson and his wife, Sarah, bought Ramekins cooking school in Sonoma in 2008. Sarah Anderson also owns a Sonoma antique store, Chateau Sonoma.

Bluegrass helps Mentoring Alliance

Bluegrass Bar and Grill in Jack London Village is hosting a month-long fundraiser to raise money for the Sonoma Mentoring Alliance. Every Sunday throughout the month of August, Bluegrass Bar and Grill will be donating 10% total gross profits. The restaurant will also be holding a drive to collect school supplies for children in our community who are unable to afford the needed school supplies for the upcoming school year. A drop box will be located in Bluegrass Bar and Grill throughout August.

“I have been looking forward to a time that Bluegrass could host a fundraiser for the Sonoma Mentoring Alliance,” said Bluegrass owner Chris Kennedy. “We are truly lucky to have this Alliance in our community, and have so many members in our community who choose to mentor.”

Every Sunday in August, guests who bring the fundraiser flyer into the restaurant will have 10% of their spending go to the Alliance.

The Mentoring Alliance matches responsible adults with at-risk kids for social and academic success. The Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance is funded by private donations, grants and special events only, so fundraisers such as this are imperative. Kathy Witkowicki, Executive Director of the Alliance said, “Now, more than ever, non-profits need financial support. Difficult economic times call for creative fundraising measures, and we are thrilled that the Bluegrass is partnering with our organization during the month of August. We want to continue to provide the activities and support services our kids need to be successful in school and in life!”

Flyers may be printed from the Bluegrass website,, or The Sonoma Mentoring Alliance website, Reservations are highly suggested. Bluegrass Bar and Grill is located at 14301 Arnold Dr. in Glen Ellen. Call 935-4488 for more information.

Quarryhill features Bright Brass Quintet

On Aug. 21, Quarryhill Botanical Garden in Glen Ellen will continue with its 2010 Summer Series with the Bright Brass Quintet, who will play Bach to Broadway on Brass.

Bring your family, bring a picnic, and enjoy a relaxing evening in Quarryhill’s world-class botanical garden. Proceeds will benefit the conservation of rare and endangered Asian plant species.

Cost is $15 for members, $20 for non-members. Join Quarryhill and admission to one of the summer music events is free. The garden opens at 4:30 p.m., with the performance starting at 6 p.m.

Space is limited. A no-host bar will be available. Call 996-3166, or go to

Hardware store coming in August

Kenwood Village Hardware & Supply will be opening some time in mid-August, so pretty soon you won’t have to make that long drive to get your hardware essentials.

Kenwood Village Hardware & Supply is busy putting the finishing touches on their store, which is located behind the Kenwood Farmhouse, right off of Cypress Ave.

Proprietor Kurt Poehlman is eager to get the doors open, so keep an eye peeled for increased activity at that location.

Landmark concert series

Landmark Vineyards in Kenwood is continuing their Complimentary Concert Series every Saturday from 1-4 p.m. They will also be offering complimentary Horse-Drawn Wagon Vineyard Tours from 1-4 p.m.

Join Landmark on Saturday, Aug. 14, for a special Latin-themed concert featuring the accomplished guitarist Carlos Herrera playing in the courtyard from 1-4 p.m. Shiso Sushi Catering will be serving Latin themed dishes – Cabo Oyster Shooters (local Pt. Reyes oysters, chopped cilantro, lime juice, chili paste – $5), Ceviche Hand Rolls (yellowtail ceviche, daikon sprouts, avocado, topped with Yuzu tobiko – $5), New Zealand Baked Mussels (latin style – spicy aioli, cilantro, cumin, lime topped with avocado tar tar – 6/$12), Latino Roll (chili shrimp, cucumbers topped with tuna, avocado, lime, and wasabi aioli – $12) and a Trio of Sashimi (ahi tuna with lime ponzu, salmon with wasabi/lime aioli, hamachi with chimichurri sauce – $15).

Wine will be available by the glass or bottle. Enjoy the breath-taking view of Sugarloaf State Park from Landmark’s verdant courtyard with a glass of wine while you listen to live music. Enjoy a game of bocce and stay for the afternoon. This event is complimentary; however seating is limited. Please reserve your place by contacting Nick Benz at or 833-0224.

Other Saturday artists include jazz by Randy Vincent on Aug. 7, instrumental by Jason Bodlovich on Aug. 21, and folk music by Adam Traum on Aug. 28.

Opalesce is moving

Opalesce Fine Jewelry will be moving to a new Glen Ellen location at 16531 Arnold Drive. John Rippe, goldsmith, and Karen Piper, gemologist, have been working hard to get the new location ready to open. The shop is across from the Glen Ellen Inn Restaurant. It was the location of figment, the fig condiment store, and was said to be a speakeasy at some time in the past.

Opalesce should open around Aug. 30, so keep an eye out for their Grand Opening coming soon.

Tickets on sale for Sonoma Valley Crush

Have you ever fantasized about getting involved in a wine harvest and crush? Find out what it’s like this September in the heart of Sonoma Valley.

The “CRUSH Weekend Wine Tasting Pass” is $45 per person and gives you access to harvest activities and wine tastings at select tasting rooms the weekend of Sept. 18 and 19 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.

In addition, you may book “Winery Harvest Events” hosted by select wineries. These events are taking place Sept. 15-19. Harvest Winery Events are priced separately and must be booked with wineries directly. Tickets are limited. Go to

Diabetes talk at Oakmont Gardens

On Aug. 10, 2-4 p.m. at Oakmont Gardens, there will be an informative talk about how to manage diabetes. Marlon DeCastro, M.D., Internal Medicine, will lead the discussion. Dr. DeCastro specializes in providing patient-centered care for adults of all ages. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and able to care for an individual’s specific medical needs, from preventive services to the diagnosis, treatment and management of acute and chronic conditions and diseases.

Also that afternoon, Noel Serrano, M.D., Internal Medicine, Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, will speak on “Common Health Concerns: Staying Healthy in Flu & Cold Season.” Dr. Serrano provides comprehensive, compassionate and individualized care to patients of all ages. His medical interests include senior health (geriatrics) and rheumatology.

Seating is limited, so call 538-1914 to reserve your spot. Oakmont Gardens is located at 301 White Oak Drive in Oakmont.

Sonoma Valley Chamber After Hours

The Sonoma Valley Chamber of Commerce will be hosting its Business After Hours on Aug. 19, 5:30-7 p.m. at the City of Sonoma branch of Exchange Bank, 435 West Napa St.

Come enjoy a summer evening with old and new Chamber members. Refreshments and hors d’oeuvres will be provided by Catherine Bonneau Vineyards, and Carneros Deli.

For more information, call the Chamber office at 996-1033.

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Community Calendar

Emmaus Inclusive Community service and potluck supper
Walk ‘n’ Wag
Oakmont Sunday Symposium
Press Democrat sports editor to speak at SIR #53
Daylong meditation at the Depot
Peter H. Raven Lecture Series featuring Mary Ellen Hannibal
Trees and plant communities walk
Yoga hike
Observatory events
Hike to Deer Camp
Shindig celebrates Sugarloaf 50th anniversary

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