PINOT NOIR IS MY MOST FAVORITE VARIETAL
How lucky am I that I live in one of the best growing regions for this tempermental grape?? I favor a wine that can stand on its own...something I can enjoy without food...Not too tanic, lower alcohol, fruity but dry, complex, and can move from pre-dinner to dinner seamlessly.
Despite being the highest produced red grape in the Russian River Valley, pinot is actually one of the more difficult grapes to grow...
Cool, foggy mornings allow the grape to ripen more slowly and develop those lovely and complex characteristics that earn awards for the region's wines.
From one of the pinot geniuses that brought you Kosta Brown, Dan Kosta, this is his latest labor of love.
"AldenAlli Winery creates limited-production Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Zinfandel
from cool climate regions such as the Sonoma Coast"
14210 Bacchus Lndg Wy Ste 300, Healdsburg, CA
Arista makes some very high end pinots, both single vineyard and appelation focused.
If you want something special, reserve a private "Taste of Terroire" tasting. It's so well done and a fine touch when hosting guests from out of town or if you're visiting and want an elevated experience.
Their website discourages groups of more than 8 and specifically bachelorette/bachelor parties. Which I find humorous. And awesome.
7015 Westside Rd., Healdsburg, CA
Producer of vineyard-designated wines from Pinot Noir, Syrah, Viognier, and Zinfandel.
Just purchased by Kendall Jackson. Hopefully it will keep its boutiquey feel.
One of the most incredible views in the valley.
~By appointment only ~Call ahead for picnic basket lunches
7800 Eastside Rd, Healdsburg, CA
Stunning property w state of the art architecture overlooking the Russian River Valley.
Award-winning Chardonnay, Pinot, Rosé & limited-production sparkling.
Food & wine pairings offered. Which you MUST do b/c their resident chef is uh-may-zing.
By appointment only.
4035 Westside Rd., Healdsburg, CA
Beautiful tasting room overlooking the Russian River Valley.
By appointment only.
10701 Westside Rd., Healdsburg, CA
Thomas George Estates
Small producer of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Zinfandel on the former site of Davis Bynum Winery.
The people here are as awesome as the wine. Their wine club has great perks. And they rent out their facilities for private parties. And they have a cave!
This is a nice place to bring a picnic or snacks. They also have several cottages available for rent.
Another reason to join their wine club...
8075 Westside Rd, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Phenomenal pinot by the winery that put Healdsburg and Sonoma County on the wine map.
6192 Westside Road, Healdsburg, CA
Open Thursday-Monday, appointment only Tuesday & Wednesday
J Vineyards & Winery
Contemporary tasting room featuring an incredible menu of sparkling, chardonnay and pinot noir wines. For a special occasion--or if you just want to spend an afternoon sipping and pairing wine with food--make a reservation in their Bubble Lounge. A time-worthy experience. Get a driver if you do. Trust me. You'll eat (and drink) a lot more than you think...
11447 Old Redwood Hwy Healdsburg, CA
One of my favorite new wine tasting rooms. The perfect combination of ambience and hospitality. Lovely pinots and chardonnays. And rosé! They actually greet you at the door with a tasting of rosé. Who doesn't love that?!
The MacRostie Estate House
4605 Westside Rd., Healdsburg, CA
(707) 473-9303 ~Reservations required on weekends & strongly recommended on weekdays
~Make a reservation online here--call (707) 473-9303 ext.201~
~-or email your reservation request here~
The pinots and the views here are excellent.
4791 Dry Creek Rd., Healdsburg, CA
A small, "passion project" dedicated to some beautiful wines in an even more beautiful location.
My fave rosé (grown, picked and blended specifically for rosé) KILLS!
Lovely reisling and pinot as well.
Their tasting room, property and 4-bedroom guest villa stun.
Thursday-Monday by appointment
Chardonnay, rosé, pinot and syrah are these guys' forté.
Great food & wine pairing available as well.
When you leave here, stop by Mom's Apple Pie and grab a slice. Ohmygod.
8757 Green Valley Road, Sebastopol, CA
These guys are known for their chardonnay and pinot. West county grows some of the best of these grapes. And they are no exception.
3100 Gravenstein Highway North (@ the corner of Hwy 116 & Graton Rd.), Sebastopol, CA
A beautiful tasting room in West County. Knowledgeable, fun staff. Ask for Drew. He's THE BEST.
Gorge gardens and places to lounge and take in the day.
They truly are a luxury pinot and chard producer in the Valley.
~call ahead to reserve an awesome picnic prepared by their onsite chef
3909 Frei Rd, Sebastopol, CA 95472
The Martinelli family has been growing grapes in Sonoma County since the late 1800's. Their finer wines are mostly available exclusively to their mailing list--and it's a worthy list to join. Some of the best wines I've ever poured are made by Martinelli. 3360 River Rd. Windsor, CA 95492
Merry is one of the first female wine-makers, and only one of four who've won a James Beard Award for wine.
She specializes in pinot but also makes a fancy, single vineyard desginate Chardonnay from Olivet Lane Vineyard and a sauvignon blanc. This is a wine you can only find at high end restaurants, boutiquey wine shops or at the winery.
2959 Gravenstein Highway North, Sebastopol, CA
Exclusive, award-winning, expensive pinots made by one of the most meticulous wine-makers in the region.
Their tasting room is stunning. I could live there.
Appointment only, Mon-Fri (That's right...only during the week...)
Red Car is unique. A cool gift shop with clever items surround the tasting couches and picture windows. Their wines are some of my favorite daily drinkers and they offer a very nice tasting experience. I also love that it's just a stone's throw from my favorite brunch spot, Willowood. So it's easy to pop in here to kick off your day. Their whites, rosé, pinots and syrahs are very nice.
8400 Graton Rd., Sebastopol, CA
email or (707) 829-8500
Small producer of Pinot Noir and Zinfandel near Forestville.
5700 River Rd, Santa Rosa, CA