Small, Sonoma-area wineries?
March 8, 2006 7:41 AM   Subscribe

Sonoma-area winery suggestions? I'm looking for the charming smaller places where I'll likely need to make a reservation.

I like places whose wine is affordable and not generic "Parkerized" fruitbombs. I'm a fan of Rhone-style wines. Cheers!
posted by timnyc to Food & Drink (5 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I lived in Sonoma County for several years, and my favorite wineries were along River Road in the Russian River area. Davis Bynum isn't tiny, but had great pinot noir and was always a favorite stop. Armida is on a hill, has a great view, and is a nice spot for a picnic.
posted by pb at 11:16 AM on March 8, 2006

Since Russian River was already brought up, definitely stop by Porter Creek. It's quite small -- the tasting room looks like it used to be a shed -- but no appointment is necessary. Fantastic wines. Their viognier, syrah, and pinot have never disappointed me. They also occasionally release a carignane

Another favorite actually in Sonoma is Cline. They are by no means small -- they actually distribute a few of theri wines very widely -- but are worth a visit. You might like their mourvèdre.
posted by pmbuko at 11:40 AM on March 8, 2006

The Buena Vista winery is the first one in Sonoma, and it's a great little place. Small, quaint, lots of picnic tables for having a nice day out there. You have to park out front and walk down the road. There's even a vineyard cat. :)
posted by smallerdemon at 12:57 PM on March 8, 2006

Second the suggestion for the Russian River area, Rabbit Ridge specializes in Rhone style blends. Gary Farrel, Hop Kiln and Rochioli are all also in the immediate area and would fit the bill for what you're looking for. The whole Russian River, and specifically Westside Road (where the above are all located) is a small charming intresting area. More France than California, more substance than hype.
posted by Keith Talent at 2:16 PM on March 8, 2006

Go to PapaPietro Perrys in Dry Creek Valley, near Heladsburg and try the Pinots. Ridiculously good. You can take the backroads to/from River Road from there pretty easily and there are tons of good small wineries in Dry Creek and Alexander Valleys.
posted by fshgrl at 7:58 PM on March 8, 2006

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