For the 2015 Best of Sonoma Lists we surveyed hundreds of local vintners asking for their inside perspective of the best wines, tasting rooms, and restaurants in Sonoma. If you pay as much attention to the architectural onlays and gothic gables as you do the zinfandels—then this list is for you. To help find the top architecturally-inspired Sonoma wineries we surveyed over a hundred Sonoma wine producers for their favorite architecturally-significant wineries in the area.
For the 2015 Best of Sonoma Lists we surveyed hundreds of local vintners asking for their inside perspective of the best wines, tasting rooms, and restaurants in Sonoma. Sonoma offers a wide range of pinot noir options—but some are simply too outstanding to miss. To help develop a list of the top of the top, we asked over a hundred of the top vintners in Sonoma for their own personal choice for the top Pinot Noir under $100 in the area, and the list is to die for.
For the 2015 Best of Sonoma Lists we surveyed hundreds of local vintners asking for their inside perspective of the best wines, tasting rooms, and restaurants in Sonoma. After surveying over 100 esteemed...
Wine tasting is not merely the act of drinking wine, it is the total experience and that includes the physical space you are standing in when sampling Sauvignon Blanc or pondering Petit Verdot. Most wine tasting rooms seem like afterthought - a utilitarian, banal footnote to the wine itself. So...
In my last article, I listed the Top 75 French Wines to Try Before You Quit Drinking . In this article I look at the “non-dump bucket” list for wines from California. This proved to be a different task. First, very few wineries have a long track record of making great wine. Secondly, while California is diverse, it does not have the diversity of climates and terroir and grape varietals of France. Still, it does produce some of the best wines in the world and any wine lover should make it a point to try as many of them as they can. Here is my list: 1. Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon – It’s hard to pick the first wine. This one is a great wine in every vintage and has been for a long time. Expensive but still possible to afford and made in large enough quantities to be found in grocery stores. Every lover of Cabernet should try this once.
IntoWine asked our panel of experts to share their recommendations for the best Sonoma County white wine for the price: Sonoma’s reputation for making ultra premium wines does not come without merit. Sonoma has history of making focused, sumptuous wines from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Bordeaux varieties. Recently, I came across Leo Steen’s Chenin Blanc. The wine proved to an honest expression of the classic French variety, with hints of citrus and island fruit. The palate is rich, with a clear acidity that carries through to the finish. The grapes for this wine come from a small sustainable vineyard in the Dry Creek Valley. The sandy, stony soils contribute to the vitality of this unique white wine which would pair well with just about any seafood, salad, or chicken recipe. (About $20) – Ben Spencer is a diploma student with the Wine & Spirit Education Trust and an IntoWine Featured Writer.
IntoWine asked our panel of experts to share their recommendations for the best Sonoma County red wine for the price: Sonoma seems to always have an uphill battle as its sibling, Napa, constantly gets the spotlight. But there are exceptional wines coming from this region. The Clos Du Bois Reserve Tempranillo ($22) is ripe with blackberry, black plums, soft and spicy blackberry, blueberry and black cherry positioned correctly with oak and acid. One-fourth of this wine is cabernet sauvignon, which builds a dense, strong structure most tempranillo’s do not have. Layered with a juicy fresh crushed dark fruit mouth feel, this is a surprisingly commanding wine that at first blush seem like it might have come from Napa. But no, Sonoma wines stand on their own. - Michael Cervin , Wine Judge, Restaurant Critic, and IntoWine Featured Writer
California's Sonoma County has a near-perfect climate for growing cool-weather grapes. Fog banks that creep over the hillsides from the Pacific Ocean and relatively cloudy weather during key months (Californians call it "June Gloom") make many parts of Sonoma an ideal place to plant pinot noir and chardonnay.
Dog lovers are always on the look out for places they can easily take their four legged friends. IntoWine.com has scoured Sonoma County to find the wineries that lay out the welcome mat for dog owners to bring Fido along. The list below is in no particular order. Taft Street Winery Sebastopol - The winery has an industrial feel to it. The tasting room sits across the driveway from the actual production facility. This is not a winery with vast gardens and scenic views. It's a production facility. More...
Looking to take a guided tour of a winery production facility or the vineyards themselves? IntoWine.com has scoured Sonoma County to find the wineries that offer tours. The list below is in no particular order. Benziger Family Winery Glen Ellen - Benziger is a must see destination spot for people planning a Sonoma winery tour. Beautiful, with a "Garden of Eden" feel to it, Benziger offers just about everything you can want in a winery experience with great wines, beautiful gardens, grand views, bio-diversity, hourly tours, picnic grounds, and even a playground for the kids. More... .