Starfield provides visitors with two buildings, three patios, an amphitheater, walking trails and a lake that offers visitors a wide range of hospitality experiences. Many are designed by the award-winning architectural firm of Sage Architecture, who not only worked to create an exceptional winetasting experience, but also worked to integrate the natural environment into the structures, using soaring rooflines to offer stunning vistas of the vineyards and Foothills, open and covered patios to draw people outside during balmy spring, summer and fall days, and paths that integrate the structures, vineyard and gardens in an easy flow.
The Tasting Room
We are converting the original 1960s era ranch house to our Tasting Room, where we offer tastings at both our tasting bar and wrap-around outdoor patio. The Tasting Room offers a tasting bar open seven days a week, 10-5, without appointment. Groups of eight or more require appointments at least 24 hours in advance.
Guests may bring picnic lunches for enjoyment at the Tasting Room lawn, Ridge Patio or Mountain Amphitheater.
The Rose Arbor
The Rose Arbor extends from the Tasting Room to the Ridge Patio and Mountain Amphitheater, creating a graceful arched pathway into the heart of the property, covered by hundreds of Iceberg and Sally Holmes climbing roses, which bloom year-round in Placerville. It traverses blocks of Grenache and Mourvedre grapes, and provides views of Starfield Lake and the eastern Smith Flat hills.
The Ridge Patio
You reach the Ridge Patio by walking through the Rose Arbor. It is surrounded by some of the oldest Ponderosa pines on the property, offers soaring 360 degree views of the vineyards and Foothills, and features a tasting bar and tables where visitors can relax and bring a picnic lunch.
The Mountain Amphitheater
The Mountain Amphitheater is built into a natural swale below the Ridge Patio and Rose Arbor. It’s shaded by towering Ponderosa pines on the south, and London Plane Trees on the north, and opens onto Starfield Lake. There are nine tiers of seating, which follow the natural contours of the land, and descend in easy steps from the Ridge Pavilion down to the stage.
The stage area rests within Philena’s Glade, named in honor of the founder’s mother, Phyllis Jack Sinton, who was named for her great-grandmother, Philena Hollister. Phyllis was a lifelong gardener and self-taught botanist, who could recognize and name most of the plants in any California garden, and whose beautiful shade trees, flowering shrubs, rock gardens and winding trails inspired the gardens at Starfield.
Access to the Amphitheater and Stage is either by the Lake Trail, which winds through the tall pines along the southern edge, or by the Lake Pavilion Road, which runs next to the vineyard along the northern edge of the Amphitheater.
On concert days, visitors may bring a beach towel to sit on the grass, or a folding beach chair. Lowback chairs may be positioned at the front of the tiers. Highback chairs must be set up at the back of the tiers. Camp chairs with individual legs are not allowed to avoid damaging the grass.
Check the calendar before you schedule your visit to see what’s going on at the Mountain Amphitheater!
The Lake Pavilion
The Lake is the heart of Starfield, and the Lake Pavilion is a very special place on the Lake. It rests on piers over the waters of Starfield Lake, and invites Wine Club members to experience the serenity and life of the lake. The Pavilion is exclusively open to Wine Club members. Tables may be reserved by appointment. On warm days the open-air pavilion provides a shady spot to share a bottle of wine and a picnic lunch with friends, or just to rest for a moment while enjoying views of the forest and vineyard.
Starfield Lake offers soaring views of the Foothills, a shady trail that winds through azaleas, rhododendrons, hydrangeas and dogwoods, and a backdrop of vineyards that produce many of the robust red wines at Starfield. During summer, the lakeshore is ablaze with hundreds of hardy water lilies, water irises and bog plants. No visit is complete without a walk around Starfield Lake!