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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Find a Spiced-Up Side to Wine Country

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3. What to Do


Live bands play at the Healdsburg Farmers Market, which hosts festivals throughout late summer and fall.   

Call ahead for a personal tour of boutique winery Captûre, a mountain estate overlooking the Alexander Valley that touts some of the highest-elevation vines in America. The spot is helmed by venerable third-generation winemaker Denis Malbec, who oversaw Bordeaux’s Château Latour before decamping to California in the early aughts. Now releasing its second vintage, the winery is particularly known for its bold, Bordeaux-style Cabernets.

Browse vintage pop-art paintings by Stanley Mouse at Rockin Roses Gallery, opened in June 2010. Mouse made a name for himself designing concert posters and record covers for Journey, Janis Joplin, Hendrix, and the Grateful Dead during the psychedelic seventies. Here, he sells rare works like an original Hendrix design for $250,000 and the original artwork to his iconic “Zig-Zag” poster—an ad for Zig-Zag rolling papers—for $1 million. Numbered and signed paintings on LSD blotter paper are $300.

Stroll through Long Meadow Ranch's fragrant herb, flower, and vegetable gardens in nearby St. Helena (open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.). In addition to vineyards, the 5.8-acre property produces grass-fed beef, eggs, olive oil, honey, and produce, all sold in the on-site market. Afterward, sample wines—particularly the 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon—and fresh-pressed olive oil at the renovated five-month-old tasting room.

Listen to local jazz and bluegrass bands like the Mountain River Valley Boys at the Healdsburg Farmers Market (Saturdays though November, 9 a.m. to noon). The 32-year-old market draws farmers, flower growers, dairy men, fishermen, bakers, butchers, tamale-makers, and more—most from within a ten-mile radius.


Published on Apr 5, 2010 as a web exclusive.

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