Sonoma Extra Virgin Festival

Autumn in wine country is famous for grapes, but it’s also the season for olive harvest. The Sonoma Extra Virgin Festival is coming up at B.R. Cohn Winery on November 5-6. It sounds amazing! One of the things we love about living in San Francisco is that wine country is just around an hour drive away, so it’s easy to take a day trip for special events like this. B.R. Cohn winery is in the heart of Sonoma Valley, just north of downtown Sonoma.

Olive Oil Tree
Adding the olive oil dressing to this farro salad

The weekend will kick off with a hand harvest of the winery’s 160-year old heritage trees and a blessing of the olives on Saturday at 11 a.m. and will feature a variety of olive oil producers, authors, food trucks, cooking demonstrations, music, and wine. You”ll be able to taste food from The Fig Rig, Croques and Toques, Sonoma Market Olive Bar, oysters from Michael Watchorn (founder of Hog Island Oyster Co.), Sweet Scoops Ice Cream, and Crisp Bakeshop. You can get tickets online here. They include admission to the festival and a glass of B.R. Cohn wine to sip while you explore all of the amazing culinary offerings.

We’d be there if we could, but we’ll be out of town, so we’re giving away our tickets! Sign up below to enter for two free one-day passes to the Sonoma Extra Virgin Festival. You may only enter once. Entries must be received by Wednesday, November 2 at 5pm (PST). A winner will be chosen at random, and we will contact you via email on November 3.

Even though we can’t be there, we wanted to try some of the oils that will be represented at the festival. We picked up a bottle of this olive oil over the weekend. Last week we mentioned the amazing Italian heirloom squashes we had admired at the farmer’s market and planned to go back to get. We did this weekend, and also came home with a lot of other gorgeous produce. We decided to create an autumn farro salad along with persimmons and pomegranate seeds with a delicious olive oil dressing.

Farmers market hall from CUESA with italian squash, pomegranate, persimmon, and green onions
Stirring this autumn farro salad to distribute the dressing

Olive oil is a staple in our kitchen. We usually have multiple bottles open at any given time. We always have a large bottle on hand for cooking, but for finishing dishes and making salad dressings, you can’t beat high-quality artisan oils.

This Fall Farro Salad is a perfect side with chicken or fish
This wine is perfect with the autumn farro salad with an olive oil dressing

This farro salad makes a fantastic side or even a light lunch or dinner. In the autumn and winter, we love comfort foods like crab and corn chowder or French onion soup, but sometimes we just want something light. This is the perfect light seasonal meal.

This Autumn Farro Salad is perfect with an olive oil dressing, persimmons, and pomegranates

The salad was so good, we’ve shared it below. We’re sorry to have to miss our opportunity to taste all the other olive oils on offer at the festival, but we can tell you that if all of the oils at the festival are as good as the one we tried, you won’t be disappointed!

Thank you to B.R. Cohn Sonoma Extra Virgin Festival for sponsoring this post.

Autumn Farro Salad
  1. Preheat oven to 375F degrees.
  2. To cook the farro, rinse the farro in a strainer and add to a large saucepan or small stockpot. Cover with vegetable stock, bring to a simmer, and cook for 20 minutes.
  3. While the farro is cooking, toss the diced squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  4. To make the dressing, whisk together the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, orange juice, and a drop of dijon mustard in a small prep bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  5. To assemble the salad, drain the farro and let cool for a few minutes. In a large bowl, combine the farro, squash, persimmon, and pomegranate seeds. Toss with enough dressing to coat lightly, then season to taste with salt, pepper, and scallions.


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