It’s that time of year again!

CRAB SEASON!!! Well technically it began November 15, 2014 but there is still Dungeness crab galore throughout Sonoma County.

17,085,545. That’s a pretty large number right? That number represents the pounds of Dungeness crab that was caught in California in the 2014 season. South of the Mendocino/Sonoma border a whopping 10,408,183 pounds were snatched from the sea!

I recently drove up the Sonoma Coast to find myself in the quaint town of Jenner. With the fresh sea breeze blowing in the air, it was just irking me to taste what the ocean had to offer. I found myself in the highly recommended River’s End Restaurant and a Dungeness Crab Tasting Menu in front of my longing face.

Five courses later, I was stuffed with crab and Sonoma County’s beautifully paired wines, including: Balletto’s Gewürztraminer, Dutton-Goldfield’s Chardonnay and Philip Staley’s Viognier.

The shining star of the meal (this is my personal opinion) was the Crab Cake, which was lobster and Dungeness crab meat rolled in Panko breadcrumbs served with truffle cream sauce.

This, of course, is a very refined way to enjoy your Dungeness crab experience.

Here are a few other fine-dining suggestions around Northern Sonoma County with delicious wines and crab on the menu:

If you happen to be planning a day trip to the coast, here are some great places to stop for lunch and get your crab fix:

We all know crab and wine go hand in hand, so here are a few events that offer both:

  • Sbragia Family Vineyards is throwing a family style feast with fresh Dungeness crab paired with their 91+ point Chardonnay, January 31, 2015.
  • Wilson Artisan Wines will be celebrating Dungeness crab for two weekends with a delectable surf and turf menu paired with Pezzi King wines, February 7&8, 14&15.
  • Portalupi Wine is starting with appetizers and then serving a 4 course, Italian Family Style Crab Feed accompanied with Portalupi wine. Menu will include Crab, Pesto Pasta, Salad, Garlic Bread & Dessert, February 21, 2015.
  • And perhaps the largest wine & crab event in Sonoma, Sonoma County Farm Bureau’s The 26th Annual Great Sonoma Crab and Wine Fest. Last year they raised $50,000 to benefit Sonoma County Farm Bureau’s agricultural education activities, February 7, 2015.

By now 80 percent of this season’s crab has been caught but DO NOT fret, sweet-juicy Dungeness crab will still be in season until June!

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Posted by Anne Loupy

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