THE 10 BEST Sonoma Wineries & Vineyards
Wineries & vineyards in sonoma.
- Wineries & Vineyards
- Wine Tours & Tastings
- Cooking Classes
- Beer Tastings & Tours
- Distillery Tours
- Coffee & Tea Tours
- Farmers Markets
- Good for Couples
- Good for a Rainy Day
- Good for Big Groups
- Honeymoon spot
- Hidden Gems
- Good for Kids
- Good for Adrenaline Seekers
- Things to do ranked using Tripadvisor data including reviews, ratings, photos, and popularity.
1. Sonoma Valley
2. Gundlach Bundschu Winery
3. Jacuzzi Family Vineyards
4. Buena Vista Winery
5. Cline Cellars
6. Repris Wines
7. WALT Wines Sonoma
8. Viansa Sonoma
9. Larson Family Winery
11. Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards
12. Roche Winery
13. Ram's Gate Winery
14. Donum Estate
15. Nicholson Ranch
16. Hanzell Vineyards
17. Petroni Vineyards
18. Scribe Winery
19. Ty Caton Vineyards
20. Anaba Wines
21. Three Sticks Wines
22. Sebastiani Vineyards and Winery
23. Robledo Family Winery
24. Bartholomew Estate Vineyards and Winery
25. Corner 103
26. Meadowcroft Wines
27. Schug Winery
28. Sojourn Cellars
29. Pangloss Cellars
30. Homewood Winery
What travelers are saying
- Napa and Sonoma Wine Country Full-Day Tour from San Francisco
- San Francisco Super Saver: Muir Woods & Wine Country w/ optional Gourmet Lunch
- Wine Country Small-Group Tour from San Francisco with Tastings
- Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley Including Lunch
- Muir Woods with Napa & Sonoma Wine Tour
- Sonoma Valley
- Jacuzzi Family Vineyards
- Gundlach Bundschu Winery
- Cline Cellars
- Buena Vista Winery
- Patz & Hall
- Larson Family Winery
- Petroni Vineyards
- Robledo Family Winery
- Bartholomew Estate Vineyards and Winery
- Three Sticks Wines
12 Beautiful Wineries to Visit on Your Next Trip to Sonoma
From Mediterranean-inspired villas to modern lounges.
While Napa Valley may be California’s most well-known wine region, nearby Sonoma Valley has established itself as worthy of its own visit. The winemaking region, of which the historic town of Sonoma is at the heart, features spectacular views, top-quality dining at some of California’s best restaurants , and memorable wine experiences with perhaps a bit more rusticity than neighboring Napa Valley wineries . Sonoma’s relaxed atmosphere, however, doesn’t diminish its luxuriousness: Along with boasting some of California’s best wineries , the region is also home to several high-caliber hotels and spas that make for an idyllic home base for a wine-centric getaway.
Here, we’re highlighting several of the best wineries in Sonoma that offer outstanding representations of what the region’s top growers and most talented winemakers are capable of, as well as truly stunning settings and other amenities that combine for a unique wine tasting experience. For your next trip to Northern California, consider a jaunt to Sonoma. From its historic plaza featuring Mission San Francisco Solano to cutting edge contemporary architecture, there is truly something for every wine and design enthusiast in beautiful Sonoma Valley. Read on for the best wineries in Sonoma.
Jordan Vineyard & Winery
Inspired by the great wine châteaus of France, Jordan Vineyard & Winery was founded in 1972 in honor of the powerful connection between wine, food, and hospitality. The label produces cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, and sparkling wine, all of which enhance the gastronomic experience and are mainstays of French hosting.
A visit to the Jordan Winery estate is a true feast for the senses with culinary events, tours of the breathtaking estate, and much more. Designer Maria Khouri Haidamus recently reimagined the lobby and guest rooms, blending together French elegance and Californian ease.
Alfresco lunches, vineyard hiking adventures, and library tastings are just a few of the activities one can expect from a gorgeous day at the 1,200-acre Healdsburg estate. It's also home to one of the few California wineries that offer luxury accommodations on the property for members of Jordan Estate Rewards if you're seeking a truly immersive wine country experience.
A visit to Hanzell Vineyards begins with stunning ascent into the foothills of the Mayacamas Mountains, offering a harbinger of the spectacular vistas to come during your tasting. The winery was founded in 1953 by James D. Zellerbach who was one of the first American winemakers to introduce the Burgundian varietals of pinot noir and chardonnay to the region.
Today, those varietals still thrive at Hanzell, which has been owned by the de Brye family since 1975, thanks to its holistic approach to bio-diverse farming. Farm life is, charmingly, a central feature of any visit to Hanzell: Tastings occur in a wooden and stone barn overlooking one the of the property’s vineyards and animals—from turkeys and chickens to cats—may make an appearance. Reservations for tastings are required.
Three Sticks Wines
Cap off a day of vineyard visiting with a tasting at Three Sticks Wines’ historic adobe home, just off the plaza in downtown Sonoma. Known as the Vallejo-Casteñada Adobe, the 19th century building is a Sonoma landmark with rich ties to California history as it first belonged to Salvador Vallejo, brother of General Mariano Vallejo, who founded the town of Sonoma.
Today, it exudes contemporary comfort with interiors respectfully yet creatively reimagined by designer Ken Fulk, plus courtyards with mature plantings and transportive water features—an idyllic setting for sampling Three Sticks’ chardonnay and pinot noir produced from its nearby estate vineyards. Reservations are required and limited to six people. Upgrade your tasting by booking a food pairing experience or a "merroir" tasting, which offers oyster and caviar pairings.
Flowers Vineyard & Winery
While Flowers Vineyards & Winery 's House of Flowers looks like a hip, modern estate, its legacy runs deep. Husband and wife team Joan and Walt Flowers bought a stunning mountaintop piece of land on the first ridgeline of the Sonoma Coast, which was then uncharted territory for planting grapes, and yet, they planted pinot noir and chardonnay anyways. And now, after more than 30 years, Flowers Vineyards & Winery's minimal-intervention, sustainable wines have become a vital piece of California wine history.
The House of Flowers estate is home to indoor and outdoor tasting experiences, sprawling gardens, and a perfect location just seven minutes from downtown Healdsburg. Sip on Meghan Markle's favorite pinot noir and the 95-point 2018 Flowers Camp Meeting Ridge chardonnay alongside a seasonal picnic created by the House of Flowers Culinary Team or try a flight underneath the estate's picturesque outdoor patio. Reservations required.
Buena Vista Winery
Buena Vista Winery 's stunning, circa 1857 property is California's first premium winery and remains a key player in the region today. The California Historic Landmark is home to well-balanced, structured wines boasting just the right amount of acidity for a new world vino, making them an excellent representation of the state's vibrant wine country.
Buena Vista's original winery is open daily to visitors for a variety of tasting experiences. Our pick is the Grand Reserve Experience which offers private tastings of the label's exclusive wines in their historic wine caves with glorious ambiance. Founder's is the highest-rated collection of the label, and the port is not to be missed. Reservations required.
Hamel Family Wines Estate
Hamel Family Wines is a beloved label by experts and everyday drinkers alike for its commitment to top-quality, small-production wines made with organic and sustainable practices. It's equally as renowned for fabulous tasting experiences at the family's gorgeous wine estate that offer something for everyone—even teetotalers who are along for the ride.
Each wine experience is led by an estate ambassador and includes a tour of the property. You can't make a trip to Hamel Family Wines without the Reserve Experience, a personalized food and wine journey featuring thoughtful, seasonal pairings from the estate's executive chef. Guests are greeted with a glass of sauvignon blanc as they begin the tour and finish with a four-course dinner served with the label's best cabernet sauvignon blends. Reservations required.
Landmark Vineyards was founded in 1974 and is famous for producing exceptional chardonnay and pinot noir. Grapes are aged in French oak barrels to bring aromatic, complex, and expressive wines to life in the California vernacular, while nodding to the old world way of doing things.
Landmark is home to two tasting rooms, one in Kenwood, and the other in Healdsburg. The former, shown here, is located in the foothills of the Mayacamas Mountains and offers tastings of the label's most renowned wines, plus small production, winery-only bottles. Horticulture lovers will adore the Sensory Tasting at the estate's lush gardens that allows guests to experience wines alongside fresh herbs and flowers to further explore the sensory aspects of enjoying wine.
Scribe Winery has developed a cult following for its terroir-driven wines since fourth-generation California farmers (and brothers) Andrew and Adam Mariani brought their passion for sustainable agriculture to viticulture. Their chef sister, Kelly Mariani, is also part of the family venture and frequently hosts Scribe dinners that feature produce grown on the estate property.
The Scribe Farm & Winery—featuring charming 19th century Mission-style home on grounds that have been making wine since before prohibition—is currently only open to members of the Scribe Viticulture Society . The membership model makes for a fabulous opportunity for wine enthusiasts to connect on the property, at events around the country, and to discover the label's best bottles and latest releases before anyone else. Membership currently required.
Jesse Katz has certainly made a name for himself in the world of wine with Aperture Cellars , which he founded in 2009. The winemaker loves Sonoma for its ability to offer "new world fruit and old world elegance." While cabernet sauvignon is the signature offering of Aperture, the label's other offerings are all highly lauded and favorites of wine experts and enthusiasts alike.
Aperture Estate opened in Summer 2020 and is ready to welcome guests to the art- and design-centric structure just two miles from downtown Healdsburg. There are a variety of ways to enjoy a tasting at this fabulous destination, and the Soil and Site Series Experiences offer insights into Katz's passion for the region's terroir and the soil that brings such richness to his creations. Reservations required.
Gundlach Bundschu Winery
Gundlach Bundshcu Winery , affectionately known as "GunBun," is California's oldest family-owned winery and is one of the region's most renowned producers. Named "Rhinefarm," the wine estate has been producing grapes since 1858 and offers 11 varietals today. The label's gewürztraminer is a favorite and pays homage to the family's roots, as founder Jacob Gundlach brought over this grape from his homeland in the mid 19th century.
The bucolic Rhinefarm is a must-see for oenophiles, history buffs, and travel aficionados alike, as the property features an abundance of opportunities for learning more about GunBun and California's rich wine history. The private tastings offer exclusive ways to explore the heritage and diversity of this historic estate. Reservations required.
Lytton Springs at Ridge Vineyards
Ridge Vineyards is famous for single-vineyard, "pre-industrial" winemaking that relies more on the impeccability of the grounds and mother nature than machinery and additives. The sustainable winery even labels every action and ingredient used to produce each bottle. While Ridge focuses primarily on reds, the label also offers highly rated chardonnay.
Ridge Vineyards has two estates that hold tasting experiences: Lytton Springs in Healdsburg (shown here) and Monte Bello in Cupertino. The Lytton Springs property features a Century Tour & Library Tasting that immerses visitors into the world of sustainable California winemaking and allows one to experience the best Ridge Vineyards vintages from the property's gorgeous terrace overlooking 155-year-old grapes. Reservations required.
Villa Fiore at Ferrari Carano Vineyards & Winery
Ferrari-Carano Vineyards & Winery grows its grapes across 24 vineyards and six appellations, and it now has two winemaking locations that focus on reds and whites, respectively. The Estate Winery, where the brand's white wines are made, resides in Dry Creek Valley and houses the breathtaking Villa Fiore Wine Shop & Tasting Room.
Here, visitors will be able to peruse through lush gardens, taste an array of varietals, enjoy panoramic views of the valley, and even enjoy a spectacular, Italian-style Sunday brunch on the terrace if visiting between April and October. We suggest the Enoteca Reserve Wine Tasting, which offers the most exclusive experience with the brand's smaller production, hard-to-find wines and best vintages in the villa's underground cellar. Reservations required.
Lauren Wicks is a freelance writer and editor based in Birmingham, Alabama. Before going on her own, Lauren worked for brands such as VERANDA, EatingWell, and Cooking Light , and she covers all things lifestyle from interior design and luxury travel to wine and wellness.
The Best Destinations to Visit During Off-Season
The 10 Most Luxurious Cruise Lines
Expedia Group Reveals Top Travel Trends of 2024
The 7 Best Cruises for Couples
How to Spend a Perfect Weekend in Napa Valley
8 Rude Things You May Be Doing While Flying
The Most Beautiful Castles to Visit in America
Why 'Sleep Tourism' Is So Hot in Luxury Travel
The Rich History of the Royal Yacht Britannia
Things to Do in New York City Around Christmas
The 10 Best Places to Travel This December
- Search Please fill out this field.
- Manage Your Subscription
- Give a Gift Subscription
- Food and Drink
The Best Wineries to Visit in Sonoma, According to an Expert
For great views and even better wine, these are the expert-approved Sonoma wineries to visit on your next trip to Northern California.
Sonoma County’s got plenty of draws — dotted with wineries from top to bottom, the area’s varying climate and topography make it one of the most diverse winemaking regions in the world. With about a thousand square miles on neighboring Napa, Sonoma’s 425 wineries are considerably more spread out than Napa’s 475, and some say that the breezier, quieter nature of Sonoma translates to its overall attitude. “If you're looking for great wines without an overabundance of crowds or fanfare, Sonoma is where it's at,” Bernadette Machard de Gramont , a Los Angeles–based wine consultant, tells T+L. “Sonoma is still a bit more wild in comparison to the more-developed Napa Valley, but some of the best wineries are the ones on tiny, winding roads with spotty cell service.”
If these labyrinthine roads are the region’s veins, its heart is the historic city of Sonoma, where old adobe buildings, charming shops and restaurants, and perfectly manicured greenery set the scene. It’s an excellent locale to call home base when visiting, especially if staying at the town center’s most exclusive address: MacArthur Place . The sprawling, secluded estate is another world — its 64 ultra-luxe guest rooms are impeccably decorated in soothing color palettes and soft textures, and here you’ll also find some of the best dining and overall hospitality in the area (the spa team will even draw you a curated meditative bath to break up those long tasting days).
If the great outdoors is more your style, Dawn Ranch in Guerneville — located within Sonoma’s Russian River Valley AVA (American Viticultural Area) — is a dreamy and LGBTQ-friendly getaway with rustic vibes, bonfires aplenty, and endless opportunities for adventure no matter the season.
And while the wineries can seem overwhelming in number, it’s very hard to go wrong in Sonoma. But we’ve picked out some of our top favorites with Machard de Gramont’s help to save you the guesswork. Read on for the best wineries to visit across Sonoma County this season and beyond.
Iron Horse Vineyards
Loren Hansen/Courtesy of Iron Horse Vineyards
“The Iron Horse tasting room is so unique — it's a rustic outdoor setup that lets you enjoy some of the best domestic sparkling wine out there, with a stunning view across the valley,” Machard de Gramont says. “They're known for their Wedding Cuvée, but don't sleep on the Ocean Reserve, a crisp and luscious blanc de blancs.” Green Valley, a small appellation located within the Russian River Valley AVA just northwest of Sebastopol, is known for its cool ocean air and thick cloak of fog, yielding some of the most interesting pinot noirs and chardonnays. Pro tip: when planning your visit to Iron Horse, keep an eye out for Four O’Clock Friday tasting events, which take the winery’s usual tasting experience and kick it up a notch.
Flowers Vineyards & Winery
House of Flowers is one of those places that’s just bursting with inspiration at every turn. The gardens, interior design, architecture, and the light — it’s a place for daydreaming (a living Pinterest board, if you will). This Sonoma Coast winery’s austere, high-elevation pinot noirs and chardonnays are produced organically and biodynamically by winemaker Chantal Forthun , who harnesses the grapes’ coastal freshness, minerality, and nuance, paired perfectly by the House of Flowers culinary team. This picturesque winery’s generous tastings are an absolute must.
Windy Carneros is an interesting AVA — shared by both Sonoma and Napa, this cool-climate area is known for its hills, where grape varieties like chardonnay and pinot noir thrive. At Ram’s Gate, director of winemaking Joe Nielsen is highly skilled at showcasing the 28-acre winery’s unique terroir at the intersection of the Sonoma Valley, Sonoma Coast, and Carneros borders, and the chardonnays in particular are nothing short of striking. These high-acid, crisp wines are the polar opposite of what we typically assume California chardonnays to be (i.e. butter bombs), and while the winery offers a variety of excellent tasting experiences , there are few things better than a sip of chard at the laid-back, all-marble tasting bar overlooking the estate.
Abbot’s Passage Winery and Mercantile
Situated in the charming town of Glen Ellen in the Sonoma Mountain AVA, Abbot’s Passage Winery and Mercantile is the brainchild of sixth-generation winemaker and entrepreneur Katie Bundschu of the Gundlach Bundschu family empire. And no visit to Sonoma is complete without a long, leisurely alfresco lunch within this contemporary dreamscape. Inspired by the “paths less traveled,” Abbot’s Passage features small-lot Rhône-style blends alongside some of the best food in the entire county, served family-style at the intimate-yet-spacious Field Tables or as bites during the winery’s Signature Tasting. Check out some of the other tasting experiences at Abbot’s Passage here — shuffleboard and charcuterie, anyone?
Also located within the Russian River Valley’s Green Valley appellation, Marimar Estate is home to some of Sonoma’s top white wines, according to Machard de Gramont. “For years, I had a hard time finding a California chardonnay that I really loved, and I found one of my favorites here. Marimar was founded by Marimar Torres of the famous Torres winemaking family of Spain — it's not surprising that the wines here have a European flair, but [they’ve] managed to find a great balance between Old World and New World,” she shares. “I love that the estate acknowledges their Spanish roots with the events they throw during the year, from paella parties to a Catalan holiday dinner .”
Chalk Hill Estate Winery
Courtesy of Chalk Hill Estate Winery
The terrace at Chalk Hill Estate Winery is perhaps one of the most picturesque places in Sonoma County to taste wine. It overlooks the 1,300-acre estate’s vineyards and gardens, along with the surrounding Russian River Valley and Mayacamas Mountain range. Guests of this 50-year-strong winery get an intimate look at winemaker Darrell Holbrook’s expressions of the small Chalk Hill AVA and its idiosyncratic soil composition, known for its white ash content. And, if you’re feeling fancy, opt for the caviar pairing with crème fraîche and homemade potato chips, which is now the only way we’ll take our chardonnay, thanks!
By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.
Photo Courtesy of Ferrari-Carano Vineyards & Winery
The 10 Most Beautiful Wineries in Sonoma County
Known for its stunning scenery, laid-back vibe, and locally-driven food scene, Sonoma County checks all the boxes as a dreamy Wine Country destination. But when it comes to beautiful wineries , Sonoma overdelivers. From wineries that showcase immaculately landscaped gardens to those with historic buildings and vineyard views, here are our picks for the ten most beautiful wineries in Sonoma County.
Bubbles & Bites
14 Best Temecula Wineries to Visit
Most Beautiful Wineries in Napa Valley
Top Sonoma Hotels: Where To Stay In Sonoma County
Top Family-Friendly Wineries in Sonoma County
Sonoma Wineries to Visit in 2023
If you’re searching for the best wineries to book a Sonoma County wine tasting at, here’s our list of top Sonoma wineries, from the Russian River Valley to the Sonoma Coast, Healdsburg to Alexander Valley, and Sebastopol to Dry Creek.
Sonoma County, California – a 60-minute drive from San Francisco – is home to many of the top boutique wineries in the US.
All in all, there are 632 licensed Sonoma wineries, according to the most recent Sonoma Wine Tasting Report. But fewer than that are operational, and still, fewer have wine tasting rooms. We estimate there are around 400 tasting rooms in Sonoma county, which is a lot to choose from.
So whether you’re lucky enough to be living the dream in Sonoma County, or just visiting on vacation. You probably want to know which are the best Sonoma wineries in this collection of Northern California coastal communities from Bodega Bay Wineries to Healdsburg, Santa Rosa Wineries, and the Barlow in Sebastopol, built amidst the site of former apple orchards and apple processing facilities. Lucky for you, we have some insight as a Sonoma County vineyard ourselves. And while we can’t recognize all the top Sonoma wineries and hardworking winemakers we love in one list or guide, we can narrow it down to some extremely unique Sonoma wineries to try on your next visit.
We’ve made sure that these vineyards are all within driving distance of each other. So it would be easy to plan a Sonoma wine tasting tour that lets you visit a few of them. We have chosen to focus on small, family-owned wineries in particular for our list of the best wineries in Sonoma County. Because big-name brands are easy enough to find, and we want to help you sniff out the hidden gems of the region. With so many incredible Sonoma California wineries to see, it was hard to narrow down the list. For the sake of brevity, here is our list of the 21 best wineries in Sonoma County.
Map of the Best Sonoma Wineries
Sonoma Wineries & Vineyards
1. halleck vineyard sebastopol winery, 2. bricoleur vineyards sonoma winery, 3. pax wine sonoma winery, 4. dutton-goldfield sonoma wine estate.
- 5. Red Car Wine Sonoma Winery
6. Bowman Cellars Sonoma Winery
7. bump wine cellars sonoma winery vineyard, 8. russian river vineyards sonoma winery, 9. garden creek vineyards sonoma winery, 10. lynmar estate winery sonoma winery, 11. schermeister sonoma winery, 12. mira sonoma winery, 13. hartford family sonoma winery, 14. emeritus vineyards russian river valley sonoma winery, 15. iron horse vineyards california sonoma winery, 16. lambert bridge boutique sonoma winery, 17. marimar estate vineyards sonoma winery, 18. vjb cellars sonoma winery, 19. three sticks wines sonoma winery, 20. peterson sonoma winery, 21. hanzell vineyards sonoma winery, 21 best sonoma wineries in sonoma county.
Do you want to discover the finest wines that Sonoma County has to offer by embarking on a wine-tasting tour through the picturesque vineyards and wine estates?
Be sure to visit our top picks of family-owned boutique wineries and Sonoma wineries, where you can indulge in some of the region’s most delectable wines. Whether you explore a charming vineyard or a renowned wine estate, you’re guaranteed to savor a truly exceptional tasting experience.
3785 Burnside Road, 95472 Sebastopol US
- Why we chose it: For a truly unique wine-tasting experience, head to Halleck Vineyard, where award-winning small-production wines are handcrafted. This small-scale winery offers limited-production wines that showcase the cool climate of Sonoma Coast and Russian River Valley. Furthermore, tastings are limited to just 16 guests; each wine is expertly paired with local delicacies. Advance reservations as required and 11 am and 3 pm seatings are hosted Thursday through Sunday.
- Who it’s for: Pinotphiles looking to enjoy the best Pinot Noir in the United States should definitely try this highly personalized Sonoma wine-tasting experience.
Unforgettable Wine-tasting Experience at Halleck Vineyard in Sonoma County
Don’t miss Halleck Vineyard, where the first Pinot Noir Vineyard in Sebastopol was planted, making Halleck the original winery where Pinot grapes were grown. Halleck Vineyard is also known as one of the best wineries in Sonoma County wineries & vineyards.
It’s 15 minutes from Bodega Bay or the Barlow in downtown Sebastopol and nestled in the hills on the edge of the new West Sonoma Coast AVA. This small, family-owned estate winery produces award-winning, hand-crafted Sonoma county wines that are not sold in stores.
Halleck Vineyard’s mission is building community through wine. These intimate Sonoma County wine-tasting experiences are hosted at the Sebastopol estate, where winemaker Ross Halleck lives. Surrounded by the first Pinot Noir vineyard ever planted in Sebastopol, guests are wrapped in the fabulous hospitality of Ross Halleck and Harris Miner, where they are introduced to their mesmerizing selection of Russian River Valley wines . Halleck Vineyard has won Best in Class for their Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc and their star Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir . Their accolades are as exceptional and diverse as their wines. Their Dry Gewürztraminer – reserved for Inner Circle Wine Club members only – has been judged the number one white wine in California! Check out their seemingly endless list of 5-star reviews.
- Why we chose it: Bricoleur Vineyards has a little bit of everything. Despite being new to the scene, they’ve already earned their spot on our list of the best wineries in the Sonoma County area.
- Who it’s for: Anyone ready for a wine DESTINATION – and those looking for dietary-friendly wine tastings.
Bricoleur Vineyards: Perfect Addition to the Sonoma Wines County
Bricoleur Vineyards is a sustainable winery poised to become one of Sonoma County’s most iconic wineries. Despite opening during the lockdown, owners Mark and Elizabeth Hanson have enjoyed considerable success.
Situated in the Russian River Valley, the vineyard is a picturesque weekend getaway with grape vines, olive groves, a honey farm, a rose garden, fruit orchards, bocce courts, and a private pond for rowing and fishing. Don’t miss the opportunity to experience their renowned wine private tasting.
We also need to mention their culinary team. Their modern tasting experience is as versatile as it is artisanal – with vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan options in their pairings. They even do picnics. You can also sip some unoaked Chardonnay or Alexander Valley Zinfandel while supporting a good cause. This fabulous family winery gives back to numerous charities, from the Make-A-Wish Foundation to the Sonoma County Fire Relief Fund.
- Why we chose it: This is one of the best wineries in Sonoma County to try something you haven’t experienced before.
- Who it’s for: Lovers of Syrah – and anyone looking to explore cool climate Sebastopol wine varietals.
Artisinal Winemaking at Pax Vineyards Sonoma
When you visit Pax Wine, expect a unique Sebastopol wine-tasting experience because they offer “esoteric varieties” of wine. These varieties include Trousseau Gris, Charbono, Mission, and Gamay Noir. If you haven’t heard of one or more of those grapes, you’re in for a treat!
Pax Wine offers more than just great California wine. Their hospitality and exclusive tours allow visitors to enjoy stunning coast views from the gardens overlooking the glass-walled winery.
Using sustainable and biodynamic methods, Pax is a premier producer of Syrah wine. Conveniently located near local shopping, restaurants, breweries, and distilleries, a tour of Pax offers a unique and eco-friendly experience.
- Why we chose it: With ratings like these, we’d be remiss to leave them off our list!
- Who it’s for: Anyone looking for a great wine-tasting experience – or a fur-baby friendly day trip.
Dutton-Goldfield Winery: Partnership of Vineyards and Winemaking in Sonoma
Don’t miss the rustic luxury of Dutton-Goldfield Winery, one of the best Sonoma wineries. Dutton-Goldfield is a partnership between grape grower Stever Dutton and winemaker Dan Goldfield.
Reserve your tasting and enjoy their sustainable Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, as well as a variety of red and white wines. So you’re bound to find something you enjoy.
Their Sonoma wine tasting room has both indoor and outdoor seating, with a beautiful patio for summer wine tastings and a cozy fireplace for winter wine tastings. They have a bunch of fun Sonoma wine pairing options – including sushi pairings – and are a dog-friendly winery, so your pooch can enjoy the fun too.
5. Red Car Wine Sonoma Vineyard
- Why we chose it: We love their sustainable approach to winemaking. We also think you’d be hard-pressed to find a better Rosé from a Pinot Noir.
- Who it’s for: Anyone with a penchant for new and interesting Rosé wines .
Taste the Best of Sonoma Winery Red Car Wine Co.
Red Car Wine Co. is a top winery in Sonoma County known for its sustainable, organic vineyard and family wines. Their Rosé of Pinot Noir is a must-try with notes of orange blossom, orange sorbet, and red grapefruit. The wines have bright acidity and lively aromatics, perfect for food pairings.
Enjoy a tasting with delicious cheese and charcuterie boards featuring their olive oil, local cheeses, and more. The beautiful spreads include salami, cornichons, local cheeses, sun-dried fruits, house-made pickled veggies, sliced baguettes, and more.
Don’t forget to make a reservation to experience the great atmosphere and beautiful vines.
- Why we chose it: Bowman Cellars has delicious wine and a delightful ambiance to match.
- Who it’s for: People looking to party at a beautiful, character-filled venue. (And anyone looking for a 420-friendly experience.)
Sip, Savor, and Relax at Bowman Cellars Winery and Sonoma Vineyards
Ready for a fun and funky outdoor experience in the countryside? Head on over to Bowman Cellars, one of the best wineries in Sonoma County for a good time. Bowman Cellars specializes in hosting private events and intimate dining experiences. Their cozy patio has comfy chairs and excellent food – and is a cannabis-friendly space. The husband and wife team at Bowman Cellars produces mouthwateringly good wines from Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon to Pinot Noir to Chardonnay. And, if you are there on the weekend, you can experience their famous biscuit sandwiches from their restored vintage Airstream trailer.
- Why we chose it: Bump Wine Cellars is all about the people. Mieko and Geordie are fantastic hosts who truly make the experience (but we have to say, their wines are a real treat too).
- Who it’s for: This is one of the best wineries in Sonoma County for art-lovers and those looking for an intimate wine-tasting experience.
Exploring Sonoma’s Vineyards: Bump Wine Cellars’ Terroir-Driven Wines
Geordie and Meiko Carr are making waves with their small-lot, single vineyard wines at Bump Wine Cellars. They not only focus on showcasing the local terrior, but also local artists. Come see the rotating gallery of local art on their walls! Apart from the stylish decor, the tasting room at Bump Wine Cellars is home to some magnificent wines – and the Zinfandel is the star.
Husband and Wife Sonoma Winemakers
But the best thing in the room are the husband-and-wife team themselves. Geordie and Meiko personally pour your glasses while sharing stories about their history and their wines.
- Why we chose it: We love the devotional approach to farming at Russian River Vineyards. The live music is a nice addition to their premium-quality wines.
- Who it’s for: Those looking for fabulous ambiance for their wine. From mood-setting music to sanctuary wellness experiences, they have it all here.
Sustainable Sonoma Winery with Delicious Pairings
Gio Balistreri, the winemaker at Russian River Vineyards, comes from four generations of farmers, and it shows! The wine Gio makes is a tribute to the Russian River Valley and the incredible fruit this terroir – and his expertise – creates. The sustainable wines at Russian River Vineyards are full to bursting with flavor, and you can pair them with gourmet food boards, sandwiches, and salads. But something that sets this vineyard apart is the ambiance. You can book Sunday “Yoga & Wine” experiences, and the wine tastings are accompanied by live music from the best local musicians. It’s one of the best wineries in Sonoma County if you’re looking for a relaxing getaway.
- Why we chose it: Karin and Justin provide an intimate and enjoyable experience, and the hilltop scenery is spectacular.
- Who it’s for: People looking for a drop of something special in their wine-tasting tour.
The World-Class Wines of Garden Creek Vineyards in Sonoma
Garden Creek Vineyards is a bit off the beaten path – but it’s worth the journey to explore. Nestled on the eastern hillsides of Alexander Valley, Garden Creek Vineyards is wine-making paradise overlooking a stunning mountain view. Karin Warnelius-Miller and her husband Justin grew up in the world of winemaking and have a true passion for the craft. When you visit their vineyard, they make the experience both personal and informative. This is one of the best wineries in Sonoma County to learn about winemaking! After a walk through the vineyards, you can enjoy a candle-lit tasting of their diverse range of wines. On the tasting menu? Everything from Petit Verdot and Scheurebe to Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and Merlot.
- Why we chose it: This Sonoma luxury at its finest and one of the best wineries in Sonoma County for an overnight stay.
- Who it’s for: People looking for an elevated wine-tasting experience or those looking for on-site accommodations – The Bliss House sleeps up to six adults.
Experience the Ultimate Wine-Tasting at Sonoma’s Lynmar Estate Winery and Vineyard
Ready for some ritz and glam? Lynmar Estate Winery provides a luxury wine tasting experience for its visitors – and you can spend the night on the estate! Lynmar Estate Winery creates ultra-premium wine in its state-of-the-art gravity-flow winery and caves. And on the property, they have bountiful gardens of fruits, vegetables, and herbs which their chef uses to create gourmet meals for wine tastings. You can enjoy a private lunch in the gardens surrounded by beautiful plants and buzzing hummingbirds. All while paired with the perfect glass (or bottle!) of wine.
- Why we chose it: Schermeister Winery is a lovely creekside destination with a unique concept – and we really love this winemaking duo!
- Who it’s for: People with children and fur-babies in tow – and those looking for an immersive experience for the senses.
Schermeister Winery: Where Wine and Art Meet in Sonoma
Looking for something outside the norm? Schermeister Winery is one of the best wineries in Sonoma County for unique wine tasting! Case in point: they have an aroma bar. A unique place where you can experience the 18 most common aromas found in wine. Schermeister winery is fun for all ages. The stunning creekside tasting room is child and pet-friendly (as long as your dog is on a leash). And as long they will play nice with the sweet vineyard pup, Eli! Winemaker Robert Schermeister and his wife Laura are passionate about wild fermentation wines that are unfiltered, sustainably farmed, and vegan friendly wines.
Schermeister Winery, a premium winery with acres of vineyards, also offers artwork for sale by local artists and the winery owner’s family, who are artists themselves. Available pieces include artisan cutting boards and bowls. Schermeister Winery happens to be a fabulous spot for art collectors too. You can buy work from local artists or from the family themselves! Both Laura and her father are artists, and you can buy their beautiful pieces, which include a range of artisan cutting boards and bowls.
- Why we chose it: Mira Winery is perfecting the art of winemaking in Napa Valley.
- Who it’s for: Anyone looking to dip their toes into Napa wines during their stay in the Sonoma wine country.
A Hidden Gem in Wine Country: Mira Winery’s Boutique Vineyard
We have to be upfront about this: Mira Winery, located in Napa Valley, offers high-quality handcrafted all-natural wines. While not one of the top wineries in Sonoma County, it’s one of the best boutique wineries in Napa Valley, just a short drive away.
Check out Mira Winery’s wide variety of single-vineyard, single-varietal wines on their beautiful land. Visit their Winery & Hospitality House, south of Yountville, to learn firsthand how their pure winemaking approach transforms the flavor of their wines.
Each bottle is a work of art. And you’ll have a chance to enjoy Cabernet Franc, Petite Verdot, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, and more.
- Why we chose it: The unique winemaking procedures at Hartford produce some extraordinary depth in their wines.
- Who it’s for: Lovers of Old Vine Zinfandel, as this is where Hartford truly shines.
Explore The Library Wines in the Hartford Family Sonoma Winery Cellar
Hartford Family Winery produces wines with serious personalities in Forestville. Hartford’s small and low-yielding vineyards specialize in single-vineyard varieties and deliver extremely expressive and well-balanced wines. Winemaking is an art form here. Wines at Hartford are not fined or filtered, preserving every ounce of flavor and texture from the vine in every sip. The grapes are not crushed during their winemaking process. Instead, they are cold-soaked and stirred in open-top fermentors to extract optimum color and mouth feel. The resulting wine is spectacular. Try the exceptional Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Old Vine Zinfandel from their wine cellars (with a stupendous library of vintages) while enjoying the outdoor BBQ.
- Why we chose it: Dry farming practices at Emeritus Vineyards create distinctly dry and refreshing glasses of wine.
- Who it’s for: People looking for a relaxing getaway – and a place to top up their electric vehicle!
Taste the Best of Sonoma Wines at Emeritus Vineyards
Experience the breathtaking views at Emeritus Vineyards, a dry-farmed and sustainable vineyard in North Sebastopol. The atmosphere here is equal parts elegant and rustic. You’ll see wall-to-wall glass doors on the former-apple-barn tasting room that open up onto an expansive terrace. Dry farming means no supplemental irrigation is used. The vines are only watered through natural rainfall. Since rains are scarce in California summers, the roots have to dig deep for water. The helps to prevent excess sugars in the grapes while preserving delightful acidity. Emeritus takes sustainability seriously. They even offer visitors both universal and Tesla charging stations for electric cars. So you can refresh your palette and your battery at the same time. But don’t confuse dry farming with the Sonoma County Wine from the Dry Creek AVA. Only a few of the Dry Creek wineries are actually dry-farmed.
- Why we chose it: If it’s good enough for the president, then you need to try it. Plus, the view is pretty spectacular.
- Who it’s for: Anyone with a penchant for sparkling wine, and those looking for a good cause to contribute to during their wine tour.
Celebrating Tradition and Excellence: Iron Horse Winery in Sonoma
Green Valley is home to a vineyard producing California’s most celebrated sparkling wines. Iron Horse has been handcrafting estate-exclusive and exquisite bottles of bubbly for decades. And they’ve named the place after the railroad stop that crossed the property in the 1890s. Iron Horse has truly perfected their craft, and it shows. Their sparkling wines have been served at the White House for six consecutive presidential administrations. They also produce a limited-production Blanc de Blancs with National Geographic, contributing a portion of the proceeds to protect the world’s oceans. Now that’s something we can “cheers” to.
- Why we chose it: Lambert Bridge provides an absolutely idyllic location to taste wine. They also have a particularly exceptional Sauvignon Blanc.
- Who it’s for: Anyone who wants to enjoy some small-lot wines in a beautiful and intimate setting.
Indulge in a Unique Wine Experience at Lambert Bridge Winery in Sonoma
Lambert Bridge Winery lies nestled among forested redwood hills just west of its namesake trestle bridge. The grounds are a joy to visit, boasting lavish gardens and rolling hills. The wines are cultivated carefully here. They use berry-by-berry sorters, small-lot fermentors, and pedigree French oak barrels to extract the perfect balance, complexity, and concentration of flavor. Sit on the shaded patio and watch butterflies dance across the garden. Or enjoy your wine from the intimate picnic vistas or stunning redwood tasting room.
- Why we chose it: Marimar provides a different wine experience than any other Californian winery. You’ll swear you’ve been transported to Catalonia!
- Who it’s for: Lovers of Spanish-style wine – this is the real deal.
Solar-Powered Sonoma Winery: Marimar Estate Vineyards
Marimar Estate Vineyards is unique in California because it is totally European in style. The planting density is 2000 vines per acre, four times that of Californian tradition. This high density promotes root competition and reduces yield, but the fruit that does come forth is more flavorful, refined, and balanced. The entire property at Marimar is 100% solar-powered. And they incorporate thoughtful, sustainable practices when possible. For example, they have beehives to aid plant growth and cover crops to keep harmful pests at bay. When you walk through the doors, you step straight into Catalonia, as winemaking equipment, furniture, and crockery were all brought over from Spain. Fifth-generation Torres family member Christina Torres was recently appointed General Manager of the family estate winery. She previously worked with Jackson Family Wines.
Stop by and relax by the fireplace while sipping some of the best Chardonnay and Pinot Noir on offer.
- Why we chose it: VJB is as close as you can get to a trip to Italy – and that Italian hospitality is hard to beat.
- Who it’s for: People who want to try some unique Italian wine varietals while partaking in pizza on the piazza.
Taste Rare Italian Varietals at VJB Cellars in Sonoma’s Vineyards
Now it’s time for a quick trip to Tuscany (that is, as close as you can get to it without leaving Sonoma). VJB Cellars is quintessentially Italian, from the warm hospitality to the wood-oven-fired pizza to the stunning Tuscan-style villa. At VJB Cellars, you’ll be able to taste some hard-to-find Italian varietals. This is your place if you’ve ever wanted to try Sagrantino, Nebbiolo, Nero d’Avolo, or Tocai Friulano. In fact, the family produces over 20 types of wine for you to sip and savor. You can even enjoy some delicacies from their Italian marketplace while you sip your wine on the piazza.
- Why we chose it: Three Sticks has some of the best Chardonnay around. You simply can’t miss the Adobe if you’re passing through Sonoma.
- Who it’s for: History buffs, Chardonnay-lovers, or those looking to add a little Mexican flare to their wine tasting trip.
Discovering History and Wine at Three Sticks, a Sonoma Winery
Visiting Three Sticks is like being transported back in time. The tasting room rests in the historic Vallejo-Casteñada Adobe, one of the few remaining structures from California’s Mexican Period. Built-in 1842, the Adobe has been lovingly restored by the team at Three Sticks. It is now an iconic landmark right in the heart of Sonoma. But Three Sticks isn’t only about the ambiance – it regularly produces award-winning Chardonnay wines. Drop by for a taste of these Sonoma delicacies, and enjoy a meal from their renowned partner restaurant, El Dorado Kitchen.
- Why we chose it: The “Zero Manipulation” winemaking methods result in some unique and flavorful wines.
- Who it’s for: Fans of Zinfandel wine – this here is some of the best.
Sonoma’s Family-Operated Peterson Winery: A Vineyard with Character
Dry Creek is home to some of Sonoma’s best Zinfandel wine – and Peterson Winery is a cut above. That might have something to do with their unique wine-making approach, which they call “Zero Manipulation.” This low-tech yet high-touch approach produces soulful wines with amazing characteristics. Peterson Winery is completely family owned and operated. The Peterson family has been making wine here for over 30 years, and has learned how to truly maximize the flavors each bottle of wine. Even more amazing? They do it all sustainably.
- Why we chose it: Hanzell Vineyards has one of the best vineyard tours in the region, and the passion of the staff is contagious.
- Who it’s for: Those looking to learn a little extra about winemaking while being greeted by some truly adorable animals.
Hanzell Vineyard: Where Wine, Nature, and Animals Come Together in Sonoma
Hanzell Vineyard was founded by James D. Zellerbach 1953 with the hopes of creating wines that could compete on the world stage. We would say he’s done it; the vineyard produces truly exceptional wines. But it’s not just the wine that makes Hanzell stand out. It’s the people. Every staff member is passionate about winemaking, and super informative about the process. Your personalized and intimate tour will teach you all about the biodynamic farming, geography of the landscape, and history of the caves. At Hanzell, they practice “Holistic Integrated Farming” which makes use of natural nutrient cycles and helps reduce their carbon footprint. They hope to one day be 100% self-sustained, but in the meantime, any material brought in must be ethical and Certified Organic. Check nutritional on wines here . And, while you tour the fascinating property, you may just meet sheep, chickens, deer, baby piglets, Edsel the cat, or Scout and Radley – the Maremma Livestock Guardian Dogs. The animals are all SO sweet and friendly, and can only add joy to your visit.
Get the most out of your Sonoma County wine tour
That’s our short list of the best wineries in Napa Valley and Sonoma County. Pick the ones that caught your eye and plan your dream trip. Lucky for you, these wineries are all close to each other. So you can pick and choose your favorites to create an unforgettable road trip throughout wine country. What are you waiting for? From creekside getaways with a view and luxury locales to pet-friendly estates and award-winning, family-run operations, the best wineries in Sonoma County await!
Experience Wine Estate Luxury in a Sustainable, Romantic Climate
Sonoma wineries and vineyards pouring spectacular sonoma wines, wines estate vineyard gardens in microclimates for winemaking sonoma wines, vineyards sonoma from an exceptional sonoma winery, varietals poured at fantastic wine festival events with wine-tasting in solar-powered tasting rooms, find a sonoma winery with an idyllic vineyard courtesy of luxury sonoma wineries, vineyards and organically-grown wines in wine tasting wine country, sonoma wineries with diverse varietals made form organic vineyard grapes, wine from francis ford coppola in geyserville, sonoma county, sebastopol and matanzas creek is not where kendall-jackson winery is, but they have numerous vineyards in sonoma, table of contents.
About the Blog
We Write About
- Sonoma Chardonnay
- Sonoma Dry Gewurztraminer
- Sonoma Dry White Zinfandel
- Sonoma Environment
- Sonoma Holiday Wines
- Sonoma Pinot Noir
- Sonoma Sauvignon Blanc
- Sonoma Wine Clubs
- Sonoma Wine Pairings
- Sonoma Wine Ratings
- Sonoma Wine Reviews
- Sonoma Wine Stories
- Sonoma Wine Tasting Rooms
- Name This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Follow Our Sponsor
About the Sonoma Wine Tasting Blog
Wine Tasting Sonoma County
Averi is a professional writer, travel blogger, full-time digital nomad, and self-proclaimed wine lover. After spending a year in France and, later, a year in Argentina, she fell in love with red wines but will never turn down a summer-y white or dry rose in the interest of research.
Wine Events Calendar
African Safari: Wine & Wildlife Expedition
Join Sonoma vintner Jennifer Halleck on an unforgettable journey to Africa, where you will explore the wonders of this vibrant continent and share your passion for wine with fellow enthusiasts.…
2023 Harvest Party
Library Tasting, Fresh Oysters, Buffet Lunch, and Live Music…
Wine Tasting & MLB Baseball: Giants vs Rockies
JOIN HALLECK VINEYARD AT THE BALLGAME! JULY 8TH IN THE BASELINE BOX AT ORACLE PARK, SAN FRANCISCO
Watch the game from this dugout at 1st base while enjoying Halleck Vineyard wines with Ross,…
Sonoma Wine Tasting Prices Up 11% Countywide
The entry-level price of a Sonoma wine tasting rose 11% from $36 in 2022 to $40 in 2023. Adjusting for those cities with at least 15 wineries in the sample,…
Top 7 Russian River Valley Wineries to Visit
The Russian River Valley has a viticulture history unlike any other in California. Grapevines were first planted by immigrants from the Mediterranean region in the 19th century….
Wine Club Gathers for Los Angeles Wine Tasting at Amarano
Winemaker Ross Halleck of Halleck Vineyard has always believed in the power of wine to bring people together and build communities. To this end, he has been tirelessly promoting his wines beyond the borders of Sonoma County,…
Sonoma Wine Tasting in Sebastopol
10 Most Beautiful Wineries in Sonoma County
- by DEVIN PARR
- on APRIL 25, 2023
Courtesy of Chateau St. Jean | Bronwyn Ney
Everyone can probably agree that a trip to Sonoma Wine Country isn’t just a feast for the palate, it’s also a feast for the eyes. With stunning vistas everywhere you look (including those gorgeous glasses of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay the region is so famous for), it’s hard to not pinch yourself at every turn. But the beauty isn’t limited to the vineyard-striped countryside.
While Sonoma County in general is a place to behold, there are certain wineries that take the stunning natural settings in which they are located, and create incredible wine havens at their properties. From the historic to farm-centric to modern, we have rounded up a list of the top ten most beautiful wineries in Sonoma County.
J Vineyards & Winery
Courtesy of J Vineyards & Winery
Located in the beautiful Russian River Valley , J Vineyards and Winery has become known as the destination for sparkling wine, and for good reason. J Winery takes special care in and out of the vineyard to produce the most exceptional sparkling wines, and the tasting experiences on offer are also high quality. Enjoy luxurious experiences like the Legacy Lounge, which includes a flight of five exclusive wines, or the J Bubble Room, a five-course tasting menu paired with J’s award-winning wines.
In May and September, J Winery will host a Chef series, Shifting the Lens. Esteemed guest chefs will be in residency in the Bubble Room for weekend tastings and two special dinners featuring a five-course pairing menu and the opportunity to speak with the chef.
Benziger Family Winery
Courtesy of Benziger Family Winery
Founded in 1980, Benziger Family Winery has always been about three things: family, great wine, and healthy vineyards. Every wine in the Benziger portfolio carries a third-party certification of green farming practices. Whether the vineyard is certified sustainable, organic, or Biodynamic, it’s carefully tended to with the most eco-responsible methods available. In addition to producing top-notch sustainable wines, the winery is home to sweeping views of Sonoma Mountain and the surrounding area.
Book the Biodynamic Tractor Tram Tour for an interactive experience aboard a tram that takes you through the vineyards and around the estate. During the tour, keep an eye out for Benziger’s flock of sheep, who are not only adorable, but also play a vital role in the winery’s sustainable farming practices.
Courtesy of Medlock Ames
Medlock Ames Winery was formed in 1998 by college best friends, Ames Morison and Chris Medlock James, whose passion for wine led them across the country to produce award-winning wines from Sonoma’s Bell Mountain Ranch. Ames Morison is a vocal supporter of organic, light-touch agricultural practices and gentle winemaking techniques that reflect the purest representations of the terroir as demonstrated in the latest experience offered at the picturesque property.
Be sure to check out the 90-minute Immersive Sound Experience . Designed by local artist Hugh Livingston and inspired by the winery’s collective desire to spend more time outside, this unique offering features a guided walking tour through the expansive property, narrated by the natural sounds of Bell Mountain, and concludes with a seated wine tasting.
Jordan Vineyard & Winery
Courtesy of Jordan Winery
Nestled in the undulating hills of Alexander Valley in Healdsburg, Jordan is a must-see winery not only for lovers of truly exceptional Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, but also of historic architecture and design. With French elegance and California style, no architectural or aesthetic detail is overlooked, from the Tasting Library to the Bacchus Courtyard to the on-site, recently renovated suites, which overlook barrels upon barrels of Jordan wine aging in the cellar. Known as an industry leader in sustainability, Jordan’s commitment to being eco-friendly is the real deal, with more than three quarters of the estate preserved as natural habitat, including the nation’s largest pollinator sanctuary.
Jordan offers culinary events throughout the year, featuring multi-course lunches and themed dinner parties. Some of the events are members only but others are open to all who join their mailing list.
Imagery Estate Winery
Courtesy of Imagery Estate Winery
Founded in the early 1980s by Joe Benziger, Imagery Estate Winery was inspired by a curiosity to experiment with lesser-known varietals like Lagrein, Tempranillo, and Malbec in single-varietal bottlings and blends. Imagery infuses art throughout every aspect of its experience, from unique artwork replicated on every label to the tasting room and dedicated on-site art gallery, featuring label artwork commissioned from some of the world’s most notable contemporary artists. The entire collection has over 600 artworks by over 400 artists, with around 60 pieces displayed in the gallery.
Worth the splurge is the Collections Tasting, which features an in-depth exploration of rare Imagery wines and the unique stories behind each label, along with a guided art gallery tour.
Courtesy of Ledson Winery
Ledson Winery , appropriately known as “ The Castle ,” is a sight to behold. Designed by Steve Ledson himself, this 16,000-square-foot French Normandy architectural marvel offers all the fixings of an actual castle—dramatic staircases, marble fireplaces, cathedral-style windows, and over five miles of wood inlays and mosaics hand-cut by Steve’s son, Mike. Ledson offers a range of tasting experiences—all worthy of royalty—conducted in one of the winery’s lavish private tasting suites or up at one of the ornate tasting bars.
Be sure to level up your private tasting experience with a gourmet cheese and charcuterie plate to accompany your wines for only $15 per guest. Her Majesty would approve.
Chateau St. Jean
Courtesy of Chateau St. Jean
One step on to the property at Chateau St. Jean and you feel as though you have been transported to the most romantic parts of Italy or the South of France. Originally built in the 1920s as a summer home for Ernest and Maude Goff, the property was restored in 1973 and has since been listed in the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The grounds are lush with water features, gardens, picnic areas, bocce courts, a redwood grove, and a members-only terrace, providing plenty of opportunities to sip Chateau St. Jean’s wide range of award-winning wines.
Book the Bocce, Bordeaux & Burgundy Experience, and enjoy wines by the bottle in your private bocce court, complete with lounge furniture and picnic tables, not to mention gorgeous Sonoma Valley views.
Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery
Courtesy of Ferrari-Carano
This picturesque, family-owned winery located in Sonoma’s Dry Creek Valley is home to delicious wines from sustainable vineyards, including the well-known Fumé Blanc, classics like Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Sauvignon, and both red and Rosé wines made from Sangiovese in a nod to the family’s Italian heritage. Whether on the outdoor terrace—“Il Terrazzo”—or indoors in the breathtaking underground cellar for the Enoteca Reserve tasting, every corner of this stunning property is worth exploring.
Don’t miss the weekly Sunday Wine & Brunch series. This popular reservation includes a tasting of Ferrari-Carano ’s reserve wines, along with a seasonal, Italian-inspired menu featuring ingredients from the estate gardens. Nibble on savory dishes like prosciutto benedict, brunch pizza, and croque madame, and sweet treats like dark chocolate panna cotta on the winery’s idyllic Sycamore Grove terraces looking out on gardens and vineyards .
Hamel Family Wines
Courtesy of Hamel Family Wines
This family-owned and operated winery creates wines expressive of the distinctive characteristics of each of their vineyard sites, emphasizing biodynamic farming practices and minimal-intervention winemaking techniques. Quality and family are at the forefront of everything the Hamel Family does, whether in the vineyards, the winery, or the Estate House, where guests can enjoy a variety of personally curated experiences that promote education and exploration.
For an extra indulgent treat, book the Reserve Experience, a unique and personalized wine and food journey. Enjoy a privately guided tour of the winery and adjacent cave followed by a tasting of four reserve wines each paired with a canape.
Courtesy of Dutcher Crossing
Located on 35 acres in Sonoma’s Dry Creek Valley, Dutcher Crossing charms with classic 1900s farmhouse architecture. Named for the intersection of the Dry and Dutcher Creeks, Dutcher Crossing Winery boasts stunning vineyard views in an upscale, bucolic setting. The winery’s many single vineyard-designated wines demonstrate winemaker Nick Briggs’ attention to detail in the cellar and to vineyard management. Vintner owner, Debra Mathy, often personally welcomes guests who come to the tasting room for delicious wines and to enjoy the gorgeous Dry Creek Valley.
While you’re there, pick up a bottle of the Winemakers’ Cellar Testa Reserve Carignane, an offbeat grape variety which hails from Spain but shines in the hands of Dutcher Crossing’s winemaking team.
– Sonoma County Wineries with Beautiful Views –
– best wine tasting rooms in sonoma county –.
Devin Parr is a San Diego-based freelance writer and consultant specializing in wine, travel and lifestyle. In addition to covering the global wine industry, she is the resident expert in Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country, serving as the region’s ambassador on behalf of the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association . She holds a certification in wine expertise from the Apicius International School of Hospitality in Florence, Italy, as well as the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Diploma. In 2017, she was named one of Wine Enthusiast Magazine's Top 40 Under 40 Tastemakers. Follow her adventures at @thesocalwinegal and www.devinparr.com .
LOVE THIS CONTENT?
Join our newsletter for fresh articles, recipes, events, and offers emailed every couple weeks.
Like this content?
Get the newsletter
16 Best Wine Tasting Rooms in Sonoma County
8 Fantastic Sonoma Winery Tours
10 Best Sonoma County Wineries for Newcomers
How to Have a Romantic Getaway in Sonoma County
Sonoma County Maps
The 20 Best Restaurants in Sonoma County
8 Small Production Wineries in Sonoma County
The Most Mouthwatering Places to Eat in Petaluma
- Previous Feature 9 Fun Things to Do in the Artsy Town of Sebastopol
- Next Feature The Best Sonoma Olive Oil, Craft Spirits & Artisan Products
The Best Wineries To Visit In Sonoma County In 2023
In 2023, travelers to Sonoma County in California can enjoy a unique opportunity to experience some of the best wineries in the area. With over 400 wineries in Sonoma County, visitors are spoiled for choice
In 2023, travelers to Sonoma County in California can enjoy a unique opportunity to experience some of the best wineries in the area. With over 400 wineries in Sonoma County, visitors are spoiled for choice when exploring the region’s rich winemaking heritage.
We’ve compiled a guide to the top wineries to visit in 2023 based on feedback from locals, experts, and industry insiders.
Introduction to Sonoma County wine history
Before diving into the wineries themselves, it’s worth taking a moment to look at the state of the winemaking industry in Sonoma County.
The region has a long history of wine production, dating back to the 1800s. Still, it was not until the mid-20th century that Sonoma County became a serious player in the American wine industry.
Today, the region is home to some of the most prestigious winemakers in the country, producing everything from classic varietals like Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay to more experimental blends and lesser-known grape varieties.
If you’re planning a trip to the region, it’s important to note that some wineries require reservations, so it’s worth checking ahead before you go. With that in mind, let’s dive into our pick of the best wineries to visit in Sonoma County in 2023.
1. Kistler Vineyards
Photo credit: Kistler Vineyards
Kistler Vineyards is a family-owned winery, a favorite of wine critics and enthusiasts, known for producing some of the region’s finest Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs.
8-Hour Private Wine Tour Experience for up to 6 Guests – from San Francisco to Sonoma
Established in 1978, the vineyards owned and farmed by Kistler stretch across fifteen vineyards from Carneros to Sonoma.
Located in the cool climate Russian River Valley, Kistler’s vineyards benefit from the area’s morning fog and long growing season, resulting in wines with exceptional depth, complexity, and balance.
Kistler Vineyards offers an exclusive and intimate tasting experience at their 60-acre Trenton Roadhouse vineyard in the Russian River Valley.
Join Private Napa or Sonoma Valley Wine Tour
All visits are conducted by appointment from Tuesday to Saturday. During your visit, you can indulge in the exquisite taste of their world-class Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines, which have gained significant acclaim in the wine industry.
The vineyard’s picturesque setting and the opportunity to taste its award-winning wines make it a must-visit destination for wine enthusiasts.
2. Jordan Vineyard & Winery
Photo credit: Jordan Vineyard & Winery
Jordan Vineyard & Winery, located in Healdsburg, is another must-visit destination for wine lovers traveling to Sonoma County in 2023.
Enjoy Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley Including Lunch
Established in 1972 by Tom and Sally Jordan, this family-owned estate has gained international recognition for its high-quality wines, particularly Cabernet Sauvignon.
The estate spans over 1,200 acres of rolling hills and vineyards and is known for its elegant Cabernet Sauvignons, Chardonnays, and sparkling wines.
Explore Napa or Sonoma Valley – 8hr 14 Passenger – Mercedes Limo Sprinter Bus Private Tour
Set in the scenic Alexander Valley, the winery offers visitors a unique experience, combining exquisite wine tasting with a breathtaking natural setting. Visitors can tour the winery, cellars, and vineyards before enjoying a wine and food pairing experience in the winery’s elegant dining room.
3. Francis Ford Coppola Winery
Photo credit: Francis Ford Coppola Winery
For those looking for an experience that goes beyond just wine tasting, the Francis Ford Coppola Winery is a must-visit.
The winery, founded by legendary filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola, who purchased the historic Inglenook estate in 1975, is a hub for wine enthusiasts, food lovers, and adventure seekers.
Join 6-Hour Private Limousine Wine Country Tour of Napa or Sonoma
Situated in Geyserville, the winery offers a range of experiences, including wine tasting, culinary adventures, and educational winery tours. The property features a luxurious swimming pool and cabanas, extensive gardens, and grounds, providing a relaxing atmosphere for visitors.
At the winery, visitors can also indulge in exquisite dining experiences at Rustic, Francis’s Favorites restaurant. The menu is curated with Francis Ford Coppola’s favorite international cuisine and traditional Italian dishes. Emphasizing family-style cooking, Rustic provides a diverse culinary experience within a Sonoma County-casual atmosphere.
Enjoy Napa Valley and Sonoma Wine Tour
Francis Ford Coppola Winery offers an array of captivating tours and tasting experiences. Visitors can enjoy a tasting in the fully restored Gustave Niebaum mansion, choosing Experiential Tasting Experiences, and delving deep into the world of Francis Ford Coppola wines.
For a more immersive experience, the winery conducts tours where visitors can explore the vineyards, learn about the vintner’s grape philosophy, and get a glimpse of the winemaking techniques.
Experience 6-Hour Exclusive Wine Tour Experience: Up to 6 Guests
One of the popular tours is a 45-minute guided tour, offered multiple times a day, providing a comprehensive understanding of the winemaking journey. Whether you prefer a casual tasting at the Main Bar or a more intimate Seated Tasting, the winery caters to diverse preferences.
4. Williams Selyem Winery
Photo credit: Williams Selyem Winery
The Williams Selyem Winery, nestled in Healdsburg, is a true icon of Sonoma County winemaking, known for its exceptional Pinot Noirs, celebrated for their complexity, balance, and elegance.
Experience 6-Hour Private, Customized Wine Tour of Sonoma & Napa Valley
Since its founding by Burt Williams and Ed Selyem in 1979, the winery has been dedicated to crafting wines that capture the essence of the Russian River Valley, using non-interventionist winemaking techniques and sustainable practices.
Over the years, it has become synonymous with producing some of the finest wines in Sonoma County. Their focus on crafting high-quality, terroir-driven wines has earned them a loyal following among wine enthusiasts.
The estate offers tastings, allowing wine lovers to indulge in the rich flavors of their meticulously crafted wines while enjoying the picturesque surroundings of the Russian River Valley.
To plan your visit, it’s important to note that they are open daily but operate by appointment only.
5. Hamel Family Wines
Photo credit: Hamel Family Wines
Hamel Family Wines is a family-owned winery renowned for producing high-quality organic wines. This family-owned and operated winery emphasizes biodynamic farming practices and minimal-intervention winemaking techniques to create wines that are expressive of the unique characteristics of each vineyard.
Join Private Sonoma Walking Food, Wine & History Tour
They specialize in limited-production wines that include Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Grenache, and Petit Verdot.
The winery is situated on a west-facing hillside in Sonoma Valley, providing breathtaking views and a peaceful atmosphere.
Guests can indulge in a range of personally curated experiences that promote education and exploration. Choose between Estate, Reserve, Collectors, or Vertical Wine Tasting Experience.
Wine Tour: Enjoy a Wonderful Day in Napa or Sonoma Wine Country With Private Driver
Hamel Family wine tastings are led by an Estate Ambassador and include a tour and wine tasting, as well as food pairings for some experiences. They also offer a “dry” tasting for non-wine drinkers to enjoy the experience with others.
6. Iron Horse Vineyards
Photo credit: Iron Horse Vineyards
If you prefer sparkling wines, a trip to Iron Horse Vineyards is a must.
The family-owned winery is located in the Green Valley of the Russian River Valley and has been producing world-class sparkling wines for over 40 years in the cool-climate Green Valley vineyards.
Experience 6-Hour Napa or Sonoma Valley Wine Tour by Private SUV
They are renowned for producing exclusively estate-bottled still and sparkling wines that capture the distinct “sense of place” of their vineyard.
The winery is set amidst rustic redwood barns on a hill surrounded by vine-covered undulating landscapes, providing an enchanting and genuine experience of wine country.
Visitors to Iron Horse can enjoy outdoor wine tastings with breathtaking views. Additionally, Iron Horse is involved in philanthropy, with proceeds from certain wines going to support initiatives like the Sonoma County Resilience.
7. Arista Winery
Photo credit: Arista Winery
Located in the Russian River Valley, Arista Winery is renowned for its handcrafted, site-driven Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, sourced from the Russian River Valley.
Experience 8-Hour Exclusive Wine Tour for up to 6 Guests: Napa-Sonoma
Founded in 2002 by Al and Janis McWilliams, this family-owned winery focuses on sustainable farming and winemaking practices, using natural yeasts and traditional techniques to produce wines with outstanding depth and complexity.
The winery, set against the backdrop of picturesque vineyards, offers visitors an immersive experience of the world of winemaking.
Arista Winery is favored among wine enthusiasts with its inviting tasting rooms and picturesque settings, including Japanese water gardens, mountain vistas, and vineyard landscapes.
Join Private Guided Napa and Sonoma Wine Tour and Tasting
The McWilliams’ sons, Mark and Ben, took over the family business in 2012, managing the day-to-day operations and continuing the tradition of producing exceptional signature Pinot Noirs.
8. Buena Vista Winery
Photo credit: Buena Vista Winery
Buena Vista Winery is California’s second oldest winery, founded in 1857 by Agoston Haraszthy, often referred to as the “Count of Buena Vista.”
8-Hour Private Wine Tour Experience for up to 6 Guests – San Francisco to Sonoma
The winery’s history is rich and colorful, reflecting the vibrant heritage of California winemaking. Buena Vista is celebrated for its premium wines and is a significant landmark in the region. Their diverse portfolio includes varietals like Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, and Cabernet Sauvignon, among others.
Today, the winery is owned by the Boisset Collection, led by Jean-Charles Boisset, who acquired the property in May 2011.
Buena Vista Winery offers a delightful array of wine experiences and has multiple tasting rooms, showcasing its diverse selection of wines set against the backdrop of its historic property.
Visitors can explore the original winery, including the iconic Press House built in 1862, and indulge in wine tastings in the stunning courtyard.
9. Benziger Family Winery
Photo credit: Benziger Family Winery
Benziger Family Winery, founded in 1980, is located in Glen Ellen and is known for its commitment to sustainable and biodynamic farming practices. They offer a variety of wines, including Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay.
In addition to producing top-notch sustainable wines, the winery offers sweeping views of Sonoma Mountain and the surrounding area.
Benziger Family Winery offers a delightful array of tours and tastings, providing visitors with an immersive experience at their biodynamic estate.
Join 6-Hour Private Wine Country Tour of Napa in Lincoln MKT Limo (up to 8 people)
For an interactive experience, visitors can book the Biodynamic Tractor Tram Tour, which takes them through the vineyards and around the estate, providing a family-friendly and informative experience.
Additionally, there are options for seated tastings in the historic ranch house’s newly renovated spaces, enhancing the overall wine-tasting experience.
10. Lynmar Estate Winery
Photo credit: Lynmar Estate Winery
Last but not least, Lynmar Estate, a 100-acre home estate situated in the heart of Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley, stands as a preeminent producer of elegant Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays.
Experience 6-Hour Private Limousine Wine Country Tour of Napa or Sonoma
This family estate, owned by Lynn Fritz, has been certified sustainable for over a decade and focuses on minimal intervention winemaking techniques that allow the wines to express their unique terroir truly.
The estate’s vineyards, bordered by the Laguna de Santa Rosa, the largest tributary of the Russian River, benefit from the region’s unique terroir, resulting in wines that capture the essence of the Russian River Valley.
Visitors to Lynmar Estate can indulge in various experiences, including wine flights, on-site kitchen estate pairings, and collector’s lunch pairings, immersing themselves in the artistry of winemaking.
So there you have it – our picks of the best wineries to visit in Sonoma County in 2023. Whether you’re a seasoned wine lover or a first-time visitor to the region, these wineries are sure to provide an unforgettable experience.
So book your trip, grab a glass, and get ready to explore the extraordinary world of Sonoma County winemaking.
* Please note that some links are set up through affiliate programs, meaning Wine travel gets referral credits if you purchase these items via our links at no additional cost to you.
Greetings, wine & travel enthusiasts! Allow me to introduce myself. I am a lover of life's finer things - an avid appreciator of the intricacies and subtleties of wine, a curious explorer of exotic cuisines, and an adventurer at heart. As a natural storyteller, I take pleasure in sharing the knowledge and experiences gained from my travels around the world. So, sit back, relax, and let my words take you on a journey to exciting new destinations!
Protect Your Trip »
26 Top Sonoma Wineries to Visit
Sip world-class wines while enjoying vineyard and mountain views.
Plan your next getaway to Sonoma County's beautiful wine country. (Getty Images)
Northern California's Sonoma County is a dream destination for wine and food lovers. The area's diverse geography and multitude of microclimates provide an optimal environment for producing world-class, terroir-driven wines and bountiful local foods. Sonoma is home to more than 425 wineries and nearly 60,000 acres of vineyards that span 19 American Viticultural Areas from the Pacific Coast to the Mayacamas Mountains. In addition to wine tastings, many of these top Sonoma wineries host special events like dinners and live music performances. Read on to learn more about the delicious wines and inviting atmospheres offered in Sonoma's wine country.
[See more of Sonoma: Things to Do | Hotels | When to Visit | Photos ]
Francis Ford Coppola Winery: Geyserville
(Chad Keig/Courtesy of Francis Ford Coppola Winery)
Francis Ford and Eleanor Coppola purchased this 28-acre property in Alexander Valley in 2006. Inspired by Copenhagen's Tivoli Gardens, filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola wanted to create a family-friendly, resort-like winery where guests could "celebrate the love of life." Accordingly, this property has something for everyone, including two swimming pools with private "cabines" (cabanas), a poolside cafe and dining with a view at Rustic. The property also boasts a gallery filled with movie memorabilia from Coppola's feature films, bocce ball courts, and other activities and amenities. As for the wine, reservations are highly recommended if you want to enjoy a 45-minute seated tasting flight on the terrace, while the 30-minute tasting on the main floor operates on a more casual first-come, first-serve basis.
Address: 300 Via Archimedes, Geyserville, CA 95441
Jordan Vineyard & Winery: Healdsburg
(Matt Armendariz/Courtesy of Jordan Vineyard & Winery)
The inspiration for Jordan Vineyard & Winery, founded in 1972 by Tom and Sally Jordan, came from France's food and wine culture. This stunning 1,200-acre property is set among the vineyards and rolling hills of the Alexander Valley. The winery chateau houses the winemaking operation, wine cellars, kitchen and other facilities; it's also one of the venues where you can sample the vineyard's notable cabernets and chardonnays. Tasting experiences include a winery walking tour with a seated wine and food pairing in the new French-inspired cellar room. A guided vineyard tasting includes two vintages of Russian River chardonnay and two vintages of Alexander Valley cabernet sauvignon paired with a selection of artisanal salumi and cheeses chosen by the winemaker – amid panoramic vineyard views. The wines you'll sample on a three-hour estate tour are accompanied by food pairings and an olive oil tasting, along with a light lunch. Keep in mind that reservations are required for all tastings.
Address: 1474 Alexander Valley Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Patz & Hall: Sonoma
(Courtesy of Patz & Hall)
Patz & Hall was founded in 1988 by a group of four friends with knowledge of and passion for winemaking. One of the founders, James Hall, has been at the helm of the winemaking program since its inception. The Sonoma House at Patz & Hall offers a picturesque setting to sample and appreciate its wines amid the vineyard and mountain views – as long as you have a reservation – while sipping a notable chardonnay or pinot noir. Select the casual Sonoma House tasting to try four single-vineyard wines as an introduction to the vineyard. The Sparkling & Still Flight tasting option includes its specialty wines – pinot noir and chardonnay – in both sparkling and single-vineyard vintages.
Address: 21200 8th Street E., Sonoma, CA 95476
Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens: Fulton
(Courtesy of Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens)
Kendall-Jackson is picturesquely situated in the heart of Sonoma County, surrounded by gardens and vineyards. The culinary gardens at the estate cover about 4 acres, producing rare, organic and sustainable vegetables, and microgreens for the estate – and for San Francisco's best chefs. The Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate also has a truffle orchard that produced the winery's first harvest of Périgord black truffles in 2017. Travelers can make a reservation to experience either the estate wine tasting or the wine and food pairing, which comes with seasonal ingredients sourced fresh from the on-site garden to complement limited-release wines. From spring through fall the winery also hosts a garden tour and tasting option that lets you sample the wines alongside harvested produce, as well as a farm-to-table dinner series.
Address: 5007 Fulton Road, Fulton, CA 95439
Martinelli Winery: Windsor
(Courtesy of Martinelli Winery)
The Martinelli family has been growing grapes and making wine in the Russian River Valley for more than 135 years, beginning with the arrival of Giuseppe Martinelli from Italy in the 1880s. This family operation, which farms and produces small-batch chardonnay, syrah, pinot noir and zinfandel, is best known for the latter two wines. Martinelli Winery offers several tasting experiences, with reservations strongly encouraged but not always required if space permits. Splurge on The Collector's Flight to sample exclusive and highly rated wines, or check out the Heritage Tasting, which is hosted in the historic Baler Bar and features a flight of the winery's single-vineyard chardonnay, pinot noir, and syrah or zinfandel. You may also enjoy a private estate walking tour that includes a tasting, or the seasonal Vineyard Terrace Tasting offered April to October.
Address: 3360 River Road, Windsor, CA 95492
Cline Family Cellars: Sonoma
(Courtesy of Cline Cellars)
Cline Family Cellars is a family-owned and -operated sustainable winery. Fred Cline began making wine in 1982 at a small ranch in Oakley, California, and then purchased a 350-acre horse farm in the Carneros region of Sonoma Valley in 1989. The ﬁrst vintages were from original plantings of ancient vines of mourvedre, zinfandel and carignane grapes. Other varietals now include syrah and viognier, as well as pinot noir, merlot, chardonnay and grenache. Reservations are recommended for the Sonoma Heartland Tasting, which includes a flight of Sonoma AVA-focused wines. For a real treat, rent a private garden cabana that comes with a provision basket and a bottle of wine: This two-hour bottle service experience with beautiful views of the Great Lawn requires a reservation and a minimum of four guests.
Address: 24737 Arnold Drive, Sonoma, CA 95476
Dry Creek Vineyard: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of Dry Creek Vineyard)
Dry Creek Vineyard was established by David Stare in 1972. The winery considers itself one of the few remaining truly private, family-owned operations of its kind in Sonoma County; its 185-acres of land are certified sustainable and its wines are consistently highly rated. As the founder of the first new winery in Dry Creek Valley following Prohibition, Stare was the first winemaker to plant sauvignon blanc in the valley – and the first to produce a fume blanc in Sonoma County. He also initiated the process for Dry Creek Valley to become a wine appellation in 1983. Visitors to Dry Creek Vineyard can enjoy intimate seated tastings with a reservation. The approximately 1.5-hour visit includes learning about the family's history and winemaking philosophy while tasting single-vineyard and limited-production wines.
Address: 3770 Lambert Bridge Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Mauritson Wines: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of Mauritson Wines)
Mauritson Wines is famed for its zinfandel and cabernet sauvignon. The family of sheep ranchers and grape growers has been located in Dry Creek Valley since 1868; S.P. Hallengren, the great-great-great-grandfather of Mauritson Wines founder Clay Mauritson, planted his first vines in Sonoma County's Rockpile region in 1884. To accompany the family's long history of growing grapes, Clay Mauritson sought to add winemaking to the farming operation in the 1990s, debuting the winery's inaugural zinfandel in 1998. Today, signature flight tastings are available to visitors by reservation. The experience includes a tasting of the new releases along with insight into the wines and history of Mauritson's six-generation journey in the winemaking industry.
Address: 2859 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Keller Estate: Petaluma
(Michael Ryan/Courtesy of Keller Estate)
The Keller family began producing organically farmed estate wines 30 years ago at this picturesque locale in the Petaluma Gap region. The goal was to produce extraordinary, handcrafted wines that would express the unique soil, climate and topography of their property. Keller Estate is recognized for its limited production of pinot noirs and chardonnays, but visitors should also be sure to try the brut rose sparkling and Rôtie syrah blend wines. The winery offers an estate visit and tour by reservation only for a taste of five flagship wines (chardonnays, pinot noirs and syrah) and of Keller Estate olive oil. The property is pet- and family-friendly but does not allow picnicking.
Address: 5875 Lakeville Highway, Petaluma, CA 94954
Laurel Glen Vineyard: Glen Ellen
Laurel Glen's organic vineyards sit on the hillsides of Sonoma Mountain in the Sonoma Mountain area, one of the smallest AVAs with just 667 vineyard acres. The winery specializes in cabernet sauvignon but also makes a small-batch rose and sauvignon blanc. Two tastings are available by reservation in the Glen Ellen tasting room. The sampling of four current releases begins with either the Blanc Slate sauvignon blanc or Rosella rose, followed by three distinctive cabernet sauvignons from Sonoma Mountain. Visitors can also taste rare vintages of Laurel Glen Vineyard's cabernet sauvignons (spanning at least a decade) from the wine library in a separate tasting.
Address: 13750 Arnold Drive, Glen Ellen, CA 95442
Ledson Winery & Vineyards: Kenwood
Steve Ledson began construction on a house and a vineyard on this beautiful 21-acre Sonoma property in 1989. Ten years later, the 16,000-square-foot Gothic and French Normandy-style "castle" opened as Ledson Winery, surrounded by a 17-acre estate vineyard. The family also owns several other vineyards and produces more than 70 wines. Whether you opt for the Castle Selection tasting in one of three bar venues or the seated Vineyard Selection option, you'll enjoy handcrafted wines and recommendations from staff. Private wine tastings are held in individual suites and feature six top-rated wines. All tastings require advance reservations.
Address: 7335 state Route 12, Kenwood, CA 95409
Michel-Schlumberger Wine Estate: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of Michel-Schlumberger Benchland Estate)
In 1979, Switzerland-born Jean-Jacques Michel planted the original vines at what is now the 100-acre Michel-Schlumberger Wine Estate. Situated less than 20 miles from the Pacific Ocean, the property spans more than 88 acres of benchland vineyards: strips of level land with steep slopes above and below the vineyards. The winery produces more than 15 varietals, including its signature cabernet sauvignon, syrah, merlot and chardonnay. The Spanish mission-style property, located in Dry Creek Valley, is open for seated estate tastings by reservation only. You'll have the chance to sample four limited-production wines in the tasting salon for about 90 minutes.
Address: 4155 Wine Creek Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
MacRostie Winery & Vineyards: Healdsburg
(Kathryn MacDonald/Courtesy of MacRostie Winery & Vineyards)
MacRostie Winery & Vineyards was founded by Steve MacRostie in 1987. With winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen, MacRostie produces chardonnay and pinot noir made from grapes sourced from 21 chardonnay vineyards and more than 17 pinot noir sites. These include MacRostie's Thale's Estate Vineyard in the Russian River Valley and the new 74-acre Nightwing Estate Vineyard in the acclaimed Petaluma Gap region. While the MacRostie Estate House is situated in Sonoma County's Russian River Valley, the winery's vineyard program has sites in Green Valley, Carneros, Fort Ross-Seaview, Redwood Valley, Anderson Valley, Santa Maria Valley and Petaluma Gap. Guests can book a seated tasting experience with vineyard and valley views at the estate house (by reservation) that includes information on their vineyards and winemaking process. The experience also features five wines highlighting the single-vineyard chardonnays and pinot noirs from the Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast.
Address: 4605 Westside Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Iron Horse Vineyards: Sebastopol
(Courtesy of Iron Horse Vineyards)
Iron Horse Vineyards is a small, family-owned estate winery located in Green Valley, part of the Russian River Valley. Audrey and Barry Sterling fell in love with the picturesque setting in 1976 and purchased the 300 acres two weeks later. The winery is known for its sparkling wines – a favorite at the White House for the last six presidential administrations – and particularly its chardonnay and pinot noir. Guests can sample these wines at Iron Horse's outdoor "tasting room," which features panoramic views across Sonoma County with Mount Saint Helena in the distance. All winery visits and tastings are by appointment only.
Address: 9786 Ross Station Road, Sebastopol, CA 95472
Rodney Strong Vineyards: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of Rodney Strong Vineyards)
Rodney Strong, an American dancer, decided to pursue his dream of winemaking when he purchased a 160-acre vineyard in Windsor in 1961. He was the first winemaker to produce a single-vineyard Alexander Valley cabernet sauvignon. The current owners, the Klein family, bought the winery in 1989 with the goal of using sustainable farming and winemaking practices to produce premium wines. Rodney Strong has 11 estate vineyards across four AVAs: seven in Alexander Valley, two in Chalk Hill, one in the Russian River Valley and one in Northern Sonoma County. The tasting room offers indoor and seasonal outdoor wine tastings by appointment; patrons can sample a handcrafted flight such as the Rodney Strong Flight, which features five wines. You'll have the option to add on certain food pairings, including a cheese and charcuterie box, when you make your reservation. The winery also hosts special events, including a summer concert series that features acts like Blues Traveler.
Address: 11455 Old Redwood Highway, Healdsburg, CA 95448
J Vineyards & Winery: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of J Vineyards & Winery)
J Vineyards & Winery is located in Sonoma's Russian River Valley and boasts three distinct venues where wine aficionados can experience both estate wines and culinary offerings. The J Bubble Room offers an inventive Sonoma-inspired five-course wine and food pairing menu. Legacy Lounge tastings highlight small-production wines with an optional artisan cheese pairing. The Signature Bar Tasting features five sparkling and varietal wines from the Russian River Valley. J Vineyards also hosts events such as "Shifting the Lens," a limited culinary series that offers special dinners and wine pairings with guest chefs in summer 2022. All of the tastings, pairings and events require a reservation.
Address: 11447 Old Redwood Highway, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery)
Don and Rhonda Carano acquired land in the Alexander Valley AVA and founded Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery in 1981. The winery's first wines were released six years later – a 1985 Alexander Valley chardonnay and 1986 fume blanc. The 24 certified sustainable vineyards now produce more than 20 white, red and dessert wines. Travelers will want to set aside several hours for visiting this beautiful Tuscan-inspired property. Visitors can wander through the 5 acres of gardens that surround Villa Fiore, the hospitality center, then enjoy a reserve wine tasting in the Enoteca (the "wine library") in the cellar of Villa Fiore: This flight of five limited-release and reserve wines requires a reservation. Ferrari-Carano Vineyards also offers a classic tasting indoors or outside by appointment. For a special celebration, reserve a spot for La Colazione Italiana, a Sunday brunch and wine experience. The Italian-style menu features a selection of brunch favorites prepared with seasonal ingredients from the estate gardens, a sweet ending to the meal and a flight of reserve wines.
Address: 8761 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Arrowood Vineyards & Winery: Glen Ellen
Arrowood has been producing Bordeaux-inspired Sonoma County cabernet sauvignon from organic and sustainable vineyards since 1986. Founder Richard Arrowood would search for the most distinctive and terroir-driven vineyards across Sonoma to create his wines – and that tradition continues today. The winery also produces a red blend, Knights Valley malbec, Carneros chardonnay, Saralee's Vineyard viognier and Alexander Valley sauvignon blanc. The winery is open daily and offers tastings by appointment. The Portfolio Tasting introduces guests to a sampling of Arrowood's red and white wines, while the Reserve Tasting showcases its single-vineyard and reserve wines. Visitors are allowed to bring a picnic lunch to the property's Winemaker Veranda, where you can soak in views of the vineyards and estate; call ahead to reserve a table.
Address: 14347 state Route 12, Glen Ellen, CA 95442
Ridge Vineyards: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of Ridge Vineyards)
Ridge Vineyards is known primarily for its red wines – particularly its cabernet sauvignon and zinfandel – but also produces a small amount of chardonnay. Its Lytton Springs Winery in Dry Creek Valley is surrounded by 115-year-old ancient vines. This sustainable winery is unique in that the building is made of vineyard clay and bales of straw and largely solar-powered. The seated estate tasting at Lytton Springs offers a sampling of five single-vineyard wines with an incredible view of the property. The Century Tour & Library Tasting takes guests around the vineyards while you learn about the history of the estate; current release and older vintage wines are served in a seated tasting at the conclusion of the visit. A seated private tasting of Ridge's renowned Monte Bello cabernet sauvignon features other wines from its Monte Bello vineyard. An optional charcuterie, cheese and olive board can be purchased to pair with some tastings, all of which require reservations.
Address: 650 Lytton Springs Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Chalk Hill Estate: Healdsburg
(Courtesy of Chalk Hill Estate)
This beautiful 1,300-acre property was first seen from the air as founder Fred Furth flew his plane over the Russian River in 1972. After viewing the land more closely, he knew the terrain and climate were ideal for growing world-class wine grapes. Chalk Hill Estate is now home to 300 acres of vineyards and a winery, in addition to a hospitality center, a culinary garden, stables, an equestrian center and wilderness areas. Chalk Hill Estate offers guests a Vineyard Overlook Experience with scenic tastings of estate wines by appointment. Visitors can also book a guided tour of the estate in a Hummer, which also includes a walk through its culinary gardens and ends with a wine and food pairing.
Address: 10300 Chalk Hill Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Fort Ross Vineyard & Winery: Jenner
Perched atop a coastal ridge along the rugged Sonoma Coast and overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the 55 vineyard acres in the Fort Ross-Seaview AVA sit at about 920 to 1800 feet above sea level in what is called a distinct "coastal cool" wine-growing area. The winery owners, Lester and Linda Schwartz, purchased the stunning 976 coastal acres in 1988, only farming the grasslands, leaving the pristine forests and meadows untouched. This area is set apart from other Sonoma Coast AVAs by its elevation and proximity to the ocean, creating an optimal environment for farming pinot noir and chardonnay vineyards. Visitors who make an appointment can take the picturesque coastal drive to the winery to sample four of its estate wines paired with small bites prepared with locally sourced ingredients.
Address: 15725 Meyers Grade Road, Jenner, CA 95450
Buena Vista Winery: Sonoma
(Scott Chebegia/Courtesy of Buena Vista Winery)
Founded in 1857 in Sonoma by Hungarian farmer, vintner and business owner Agoston Haraszthy, Buena Vista considers itself California's first premium winery. Haraszthy, the self-proclaimed "Count of Buena Vista," is regarded as one of California's best-known and most flamboyant viticulturalists. Today, the original winery – set in the Mayacamas Mountains in Sonoma Valley – is a California Historic Landmark. You can visit this beautiful property, now owned by winemaker Jean-Charles Boisset, to tour the winery and sample vintages in the original tasting room. There are several experiences available to reserve at Buena Vista. Take a step back in time while sipping Champagne and sparkling wines at the Bubble Lounge, or opt for the barrel tasting and tour, which includes a walk through the property's grounds, a visit to the renovated Champagne Cellar, a flight of current-release wines and a sampling of wine from a barrel. For a real treat, splurge on the seated Grand Reserve Tasting.
Address: 18000 Old Winery Road, Sonoma, CA 95476
Ram's Gate Winery: Sonoma
(Courtesy of Ram's Gate Winery)
Founded in 2011, this 28-acre estate sits on a hill at the convergence of Napa and Sonoma counties and San Francisco Bay. The property is also located across three AVAs: Sonoma Coast, Carneros and Sonoma Valley. Guests can visit the picturesque winery and enjoy views of the organic vineyards while sampling estate varietals like pinot noir and chardonnay, in addition to the wines produced from other vineyards. Ram's Gate Winery's tasting experiences include a casual flight of four wines at the tasting bar, which requires a minimum of two guests. For a more immersive experience, a seasonal wine and food pairing provides more information about the farming and winemaking techniques at the estate. Caviar and Champagne aficionados will want to reserve a spot for the winery's Caviar Experience: This tasting allows you to select either the reserve or golden caviar, complemented by Ram's Gate's traditional sparkling wine and two still wines.
Address: 28700 Arnold Drive, Sonoma, CA 95476
Hamel Family Wines: Sonoma
(Courtesy of Hamel Family Wines)
The Hamel family's wine adventure began with Pam and George Hamel Jr.'s 2006 purchase of a home in Kenwood in Sonoma Valley with an acre of cabernet sauvignon vines. Now the Hamels make limited-production cabernet sauvignon, cabernet blends and other varietals at their beautiful 124-acre property, estate house and winery about 5 miles north of Sonoma Town Square. The four estate vineyards, located in the Sonoma Valley and Moon Mountains District AVAs, are certified biodynamic and organic. To immerse yourself in the family's winemaking practices, book the Estate Experience for a private tour of the vineyard, winery and wine cave. Afterward, guests will engage in a seated tasting of four estate series wines and a light snack with views of Sonoma Mountain and the valley. The Reserve Experience includes a multicourse food and wine pairing. Hamel Family Wines also offers a Collectors' Experience, which combines an informative tour with a private tasting in the cave of several reserve wines and a culinary accompaniment from the chef. These options all require an appointment.
Address: 15401 state Route 12, Sonoma, CA 95476
Matanzas Creek Winery: Santa Rosa
Nestled in the quiet – and beautiful – Bennett Valley AVA of Sonoma County, Matanzas Creek is known primarily for its sauvignon blanc and merlot. The winery, launched in 1977, farms sustainable estate vineyards that also produce small lots of Bordeaux-style red wines, pinot noir and chardonnay. For a casual visit, the winery offers picnic tables and bocce ball court rentals and bottle service with a reservation. The Matanzas Creek Comparative Tasting, another option by reservation, gives you time to explore the stunning lavender fields, vineyards and gardens, followed by a tasting of five wines. You can also reserve the Collectors Tasting to try six wines and compare current releases to the library vintages.
Address: 6097 Bennett Valley Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95404
Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards: Sonoma
José Ferrer moved with his wife, Gloria, from Barcelona to Sonoma, California, in the 1980s, bringing his family's expertise in Spanish sparkling wine to the region. In 1984, the Ferrers planted the initial 50 acres of pinot noir and chardonnay vines in Carneros, opening the winery two years later. Carneros straddles Sonoma and Napa, and the impact of the maritime effects of San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean creates the environment for a long growing season – and the optimal terroir to produce sparkling wines. Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards in 2016 was certified as sustainable. The estate comprises a total of 335 acres spanning two ranches, and guests can visit the winery and sample its sparkling wines with a selection of reservable tours and tastings. The classic experience takes place outdoors in the vista pavilion and includes four wines, with optional food add-ons available for purchase. To learn about the history, sustainability and winemaking methods, Gloria Ferrer's agricultural tour lets guests explore the vineyards by club car and enjoy a five-course food and wine pairing on the terrace.
Address: 23555 Arnold Drive, Sonoma, CA 95476
You might also be interested in:
- The Top Napa Valley Wineries to Visit
- The Top Romantic Getaways in California
- The Best Wine Vacations
- The Best Relaxing Getaways in the U.S.
- The Top Europe Hotels for Food and Wine Lovers
- The Best Carry-On Luggage
- The Top Pet Carriers
- The Top Duffel Bags
- The Top Travel Garment Bags
Tags: Travel , Food Vacations , California Vacations , US Vacations
World's Best Places To Visit
- # 1 South Island, New Zealand
- # 4 Bora Bora
If you make a purchase from our site, we may earn a commission. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.
You May Also Like
Best black friday luggage deals.
Amanda Norcross Nov. 13, 2023
Cheap Tropical Vacations
Nov. 10, 2023
The Best Caribbean Resorts for Families
Sharael Kolberg Nov. 10, 2023
The Best Christmas Light Displays
Marisa Méndez Nov. 8, 2023
The Best Luggage Trackers
Amanda Norcross Nov. 7, 2023
The Best Girls Weekend Getaways
Sharael Kolberg Nov. 7, 2023
The Best NYC Dinner Cruises
Jessica Colley Clarke Nov. 3, 2023
Most Romantic Getaways in Vermont
Sharael Kolberg and Amanda Norcross Nov. 1, 2023
The Best Travel Backpacks for Men
Timothy J. Forster Nov. 1, 2023
The Best Dude Ranch Vacations
Gwen Pratesi Oct. 31, 2023