SUISUN CITY — Wine Country came to the Suisun City waterfront on Saturday.
The occasion was the 9th annual Waterfront Festival, billed as featuring “art, wine and chocolate.” It took place in and near the town plaza on a warm, sunny afternoon, with plenty of palm trees to provide shade.
Wine vendors set up on a closed section of Solano Street. People sat next to tables in the street to drink their wine – tables with tablecloths, of course.
Pat Mendez represented the Suisun Valley Wine Cooperative, with the help of volunteers. Her booth poured wine from Blacksmith Cellars, Mangels Vineyards, Sunset Cellars and Winterhawk Winery.
“The funnest part for me is you get to educate people and introduce them to what wine can taste like,” she said.
She wants people to know that Wine Country is only a short distance away, in Suisun Valley. Visitors to the valley will find vineyards and a handful of wineries.
“We don’t want them going to Napa anymore, because we have it all in our own backyard,” Mendez said.
Plus, GV Cellars and Galvan Family Cellars also had booths at the festival. These are wines from Green Valley, an area that works together with neighboring Suisun Valley but also seeks to have its own wine-making identity.
And, representing the north county, Purple Pearl Vineyards of Dixon took part in the festival.
The festival had a lot more than wine. People could buy gourmet cupcakes, soaps, crafts and paintings. As the afternoon wore on, a few people got up in the plaza to dance as the band Ruby Lane played Van Morrison’s “Brown Eyed Girl,” prompting an appreciative comment from the band leader.
Ann and Duane Berthoux of Fairfield sat on a bench in the shade, wine glasses in hand filled with petite sirah from Suisun Valley’s Vezer Family Vineyard.
“It’s such a nice day and the afternoon is wonderful,” Ann Berthoux said.
They’ve been to past waterfront festivals, but Duane Berthoux thought this year’s edition particularly good.
“I think there’s a lot more vendors,” he said. “I think there’s a lot more wineries represented, too.”
Theresa Stout of Vacaville walked through the event holding a container with teriyaki chicken. She liked the music and also the variety of people who attended the event.
Brenda Mossa coordinated the event for the Suisun City Historic Waterfront Business Improvement District. She liked the size of the crowd and expressed hope that some people would make return visits to go to the waterfront’s shops and restaurants.
“That’s really the whole reason for having it, to let people know about Suisun,” she said.
Reach Barry Eberling at 427-6929 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/beberlingdr.