Sonoma County checks all the boxes as a dreamy Wine Country destination. Sonoma is known for its stunning scenery and locally-driven food scene. When it comes to beautiful wineries, Sonoma over delivers. Here are the picks for the ten most beautiful wineries in Sonoma County.
BEAUTIFUL WINERIES IN SONOMA
St. Francis Winery & Vineyards
100 Pythian Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95409, (888) 675-9463
Reservations: Not required
Established in 1978, St. Francis is a family-owned, Certified Sustainable winery dedicated to producing estate wines that showcase the unique terroir of the area. Enjoy picturesque views of the surrounding vineyards and Mayacamas Mountains from the mission-style tasting room, which includes a bell tower containing a 1,000-pound bronze cast bell that chimes each hour.
Insider tip: St. Francis offers a five-course wine and food tasting grown in the winery’s garden.
IDYLLIC PICNIC GROUNDS
101 Adobe Canyon Road, Kenwood, CA 95452, (707) 833-0218
Reservations: Not required
Ferrari-Carano Vineyards & Winery
8761 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 433-6700
Reservations: Required for tours and private tastings
At the northern end of the Dry Creek Valley is Ferrari-Carano, a stately, Italian-style tasting room known for its fumé blanc and super Tuscan-style reds. Taste inside the Villa Fiore hospitality center or head outside to the terrace, Il Terraza, to sip while taking in the lovely vineyard views.
Insider Tip: Regardless of the time of year you visit, don’t miss the chance to wander around the winery’s extensive gardens — five acres to be exact. Here, you’ll find footpaths, bridges, a stream, fish ponds, thousands of tulips, and other impressive flowers on display throughout the colorful grounds.
RUSSIAN RIVER GEM
1791 Olivet Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95401, (707) 755-3300
Reservations: Required for tours and specialty tastings
Since 1975, DeLoach Vineyards has produced quality pinot noir, chardonnay, and Zinfandel wines from throughout the Russian River, many from their Certified Organic and Biodynamic estate vineyards. At the tasting room, choose from several tasting options depending on your interest, such as an outdoor picnic for two, a blending experience, or a pinot noir-focused tasting by the fire.
Insider Tip: DeLoach has a line-up of fun events held throughout the year, including a Summer Solstice Dinner and the popular Bubbles & Oysters event in the fall. While some are exclusive to wine club members, be sure to check the calendar before visiting for the occasional event open to the public.
ALL THAT SPARKLES
Iron Horse Vineyards
9786 Ross Station Road, Sebastopol, CA 95472, (707) 887-1507
Iron Horse Vineyards is one of Sonoma County’s most popular family-owned wineries, known for its estate sparkling wines which can be enjoyed from the casual, rustic outdoor tasting room overlooking rolling hills of vineyards. This Russian River winery offers a wide variety of sparkling and still wines, but don’t miss sampling the popular Wedding Cuvée, a crowd-pleasing bubbly that makes a great wedding gift.
Insider Tip: While the outdoor tasting bar has heaters above, bring a jacket if visiting in the off-season so you can fully enjoy the chilled sparkling wine without actually getting a chill.
CONNECTING OLD AND NEW
2300 Napa Road, Sonoma, CA 95476, (707) 939-1858
Set on a piece of property that pioneered pre-prohibition Sonoma Valley winemaking, Scribe Winery attracts a young, hip crowd to its peaceful location for pinot noir, sylvaner, and skin-fermented chardonnay. Tastings of Scribe’s coveted wines take place in the estate’s renovated historic Hacienda, offering a glimpse of the past while you sip.
Insider Tip: A connection to the land is part of Scribe’s philosophy, which is why the winery has an on-site garden, dedicated chefs, and regular farm-to-table dinners held throughout the West Coast. Check the calendar, though, as some events are open to the public and some are for members only.
EUROPEAN STYLE GRANDEUR
Chateau St. Jean
8555 Sonoma Highway, Kenwood, CA 95452, (707) 257-5784
Reservations: Not required, but recommended for certain tasting experiences
Founded in 1973, Chateau St. Jean offers an idyllic setting in Sonoma Valley, where a European-style, 1920s chateau is surrounded by lush gardens, vineyards, and mountains. Enjoy a tasting flight in the main tasting room or an elevated seated tasting in the historic chateau, or purchase wines by the glass or bottle to savor while picnicking on the grounds.
Insider Tip: For those who like a good challenge, Chateau St. Jean now offers one of the most unique tasting experiences in the area: A Wine Country Escape Room. Guests are welcomed with a glass of sparkling wine before attempting to unlock the “secret of the Chateau” by solving a variety of puzzles and riddles. The reward for escaping the room is a tasty wine and cheese flight.
FAMILY & HOSPITALITY FIRST
Robert Young Estate
4960 Red Winery Road, Geyserville, CA 95441, (707) 431-4811
Family-owned Robert Young Estate Winery has remained dedicated to premium winemaking since 1997. Guests are welcomed to visit their Alexander Valley ranch house, The Scion House, where guided tastings include samplings of estate wines enhanced by stunning vineyard views.
Insider Tip: Robert Young offers three different tasting experiences, two of which can be enjoyed outdoors from the serene patio (weather permitting), offering unobstructed views of the surrounding valley.
A PASSION FOR BURGUNDIAN VARIETIES
La Crema Estate at Saralee’s Vineyard
3575 Slusser Road, Windsor, CA 95492, (707) 525-6200
Reservations: Required for groups of seven or more
Nestled in the heart of the Russian River Valley, La Crema Estate’s historic barn from the 1900s has been transformed into a multi-level tasting room celebrating wine, food, and Sonoma County. Here, you can sample the winery’s well-known pinot noir and chardonnay wines through a variety of educational and interactive guest experiences.
Insider Tip: During spring through fall, La Crema offers vineyard tours by golf cart, led by a personal concierge. After exploring the vineyards first-hand, the experience concludes with a taste of each vineyard-designated estate wine that La Crema produces.
1474 Alexander Valley Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 431-5250
This ivy-covered chateau in Alexander Valley is an impressive sight, modeled after the chateaus of France and surrounded by culinary gardens and vines. There are five unique wine tastings offered, all of which include food pairings, enhanced by the winery’s expansive views and quality service.
Insider Tip: To really get a taste of Jordan, book the Winery Tour & Library Tasting, which includes a walking tour of the winery followed by a seated tasting of current release and library vintages, accompanied by light bites and housemade Extra Virgin Olive Oil.