The Russian River Valley Winegrowers are a resilient community of farmers and vintners, who proudly call Sonoma County home. On October 8, 2017, a firestorm—the most catastrophic wildfire in California’s history—destroyed over 5,100 homes and buildings throughout our beloved wine region. Thankfully our Russian River Valley vineyards were spared. We are grateful and humble. But many of our friends, neighbors, and partners, lost everything when the fires raged throughout Northern California.
At the time of the firestorm’s devastation, the process of harvesting Russian River grapes was virtually complete. Our hardworking winery crews worked tirelessly throughout the month of September to pick exquisite fruits.
Interestingly vineyards act as natural fire breaks. The vines hold water and the areas between rows are typically free of vegetation that can act as an fire accelerant. Enology experts continue to study the effects of wildfire smoke in vineyards. The good news? You can expect another spectacular 2017 vintage from Russian River Valley, preserving the supreme reputation our wines are known for.
Heartsick over the losses experienced, we’re working together to help restore the community. The Russian River Valley Winegrowers donated 500 pounds of food items to the Redwood Empire Food Bank to help hungry families in Sonoma County this holiday season. Realizing that our community of displaced residents is in dire need this year, the member association made a contribution of $10,000 to the Redwood Credit Union’s North Bay Fire Relief fund.
Here’s how we can all help. Let’s raise our glasses of Sonoma County wine and make a toast to the power of resilient communities. To people helping people and perseverance. We’ll get through this together. We are Russian River Valley. Land of the Pinot, home of the brave. Together we are #SonomaStrong.