Following Sonoma County’s continued success and record-setting ways in the wine industry, we are pleased to announce that the region has been named a finalist for the 2019 Wine Star Awards for Wine Region of the Year. Dry Creek Vineyard President Kim Stare Wallace is also nominated in the category of Wine Executive of the Year.
Sonoma County’s nomination for Wine Region of the Year embodies the noteworthy contributions the area has made to the industry and community by adopting and implementing innovative, welcoming and sustainable programs including the area’s pledge to become the first 100 percent certified sustainable winegrowing region by the end of the year. As Sonoma County has become the global leader for sustainable winegrowing, the region has established the Sonoma County Center for Ag Sustainability to enable winegrowers to identify and focus on the most challenging problems facing the local wine community to ensure preservation of agriculture and continued advancement in strengthening and building the region’s sustainability efforts. Sonoma County has also proven to be leaders in social sustainability through the Sonoma County Grape Growers Foundation.
Sustainability is also important to the hospitality and lodging industry, which includes becoming destination stewards. The region is partnering with Kind Traveler, the first socially conscious “give and get” hotel booking and education platform, that gives travelers an opportunity to give $10 a night to a local charity. The donation unlocks exclusive rates and perks from a list of “Kind Hotels.”
Travelers are also asked to make a positive impact to the health and well-being of Sonoma County’s thriving local communities, abundant experiences and breath-taking natural landscapes by signing a pledge to travel lightly. The region has an ambitious goal of encouraging 1 million travelers to take the pledge.
To continue raising awareness of Sonoma County as one of the world’s premier wine regions, Sonoma County Vintners has hosted and promoted many wine-focused events including the Sonoma County Wine Auction, a leading charitable wine auction which brings wine superstars and exceptional chefs together to invest in the community. The event has raised over $30 million to help fund over 60 charitable organizations focusing on education, health and human services, the environment, and arts and culture. In addition, the annual Taste of Sonoma event, which spotlights Sonoma County’s renowned vintners and chefs allows wine enthusiasts from all over the world an opportunity to taste the bounty of Sonoma County.
Nominee Kim Stare Wallace was raised among the vines in Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley and has spent over three decades working throughout various roles in the family business, serving as President since 2011. Stare Wallace’s nomination is a testament to her dedication as a second-generation leader of her family winery, but also to her passion for championing Dry Creek Valley as a world-class wine growing appellation. The momentous occasion marks the first time that the family-owned and sustainably farmed winery has been nominated for the prestigious Wine Star Awards.
Each year, editors of Wine Enthusiast honor the individuals and companies that have made outstanding achievements in the wine and beverage world. Today, The Wine Star awards distinguish how multifaceted and rich the beverage culture has become and continues to embrace and acknowledge the trailblazers who are impacting what people put in their glass every day.
Winners will be announced on winemag.com on Thursday, October 31, 2019 and appear in the special December 31 “Best of Year” issue. Honorees will be presented their Wine Star Award trophies at the 20th anniversary black-tie awards dinner on Monday, January 27, 2020 hosted in San Francisco, CA at the Palace of Fine Arts.