For over 50 years, Windsor Vineyards has been producing award-winning wines for every occasion. In keeping with its tradition of personally hand-writing custom labels on their wines, today, customers are invited to add their own special message or greeting. Wine clubs grant customers a vine-sourced passport to a world of varietals, shipping bottles throughout the year.
Locals Wine Tasting outfits sip-seeking palates in a tasty variety of grapey frocks, all crafted by 11 lauded and loved wineries. Corral a fellow oenophile or wine-fueled automaton for an informative tasting session, which features grape-blood goods from purveyors such as Dark Horse, Foggy Valley, Bedarra Vineyards, and more. The session's flight tastings imbue suppers with a wine-filled cornucopia of vino-based knowledge, such as tasting and pairing tips and how to build a suitable flotation device from leftover corks. All participants leave with a bottle of 2008 Foggy Valley Leras Vineyard, RRV chardonnay, a fruity brew with hints of green apple, white nectarine, and melon.
Once owned by the mayor of Berkeley and family-owned for three generations, with current owner Reverend John Staten, Field Stone Winery has a long and varied history dating back to 1894, when petite sirah vines were planted in the estate vineyards. The wines created from the grapes of these vines continue to tantalize palates today with robust notes, rich color, and turn-of-the-century gossip. Buzzworthy libations also hail from the Old Block cabernet sauvignon vineyard, planted in 1968. The winery boasts sprawling Oak trees and a comfortable spot tucked into the hillside where renowned wine consultant Andre Tchelistcheff once worked, and the property's farmhouse was used in a Bartels and Jaymes wine cooler commercial in the 1980s. The manufacturers, winners of myriad awards, handcraft a Convivio companion wine culled from merlot and cabernet. They donate a portion of their profits to local nonprofit medical center Clinica Alianza.
The inspiration behind thumbprint cellars' namesake was a happy accident, albeit a messy one. In his college years, Scott Lindstrom-Dake would bottle his own vintages in his garage and sign them with a pen that his wife and business partner, Erica, bought him. The pen began to leak one night, and in his attempts to stem the flow of golden ink down a bottle, Scott left a thumbprint on its surface. Now more than 20 of the winery’s products showcase the print in a rainbow of colors, recalling the work of Andy Warhol during his short-lived career in criminal justice. At the downtown tasting bar, patrons sidle up to the sine-wave bar for pours of those vintages, pairing them with bites of local cheeses and meats.