With 50+ years of combined experience with some of the world’s most renowned winemakers, Peter and Betsy Spann founded their winery in 2001. Their steeply terraced mountainside vineyard yields small amounts of richly flavored Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Malbec and Sangiovese grapes. Just as jazz is an interpretation of classical music, Spann Vineyard blends are interpretations of classical wine styles, such as the white wines Yin-Yang (Chardonnay/Viognier blend) and the red wines OMG (Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot blend), The Powerlifter (Petite Sirah/Grenache/Syrah/ Cinsault blend) and Mo Jo (Sangiovese/Cabernet Sauvignon/Syrah/Merlot blend).
Located in Napa Valley, Honig Vineyard & Winery produces flavorsome sauvignon blancs and cabernet sauvignons that can be found on restaurant wine lists across the country. Visitors to the winery’s fancy tasting room have the chance to sample five of Honig’s delicious wines. Sommeliers and thirsty Langoliers can sniff, taste, and carefully dissect the potable properties of the Rutherford sauvignon blanc, a 2008 vintage that starts fruity and ends with a crisp, minerally finish, as well as the 2006 Honig cabernet sauvignon, which features blackberry, cherry, and plum flavors developed over 18 months in an American oak barrel, just like old-timey cowboy hobos. The remaining three samples include the 2008 Honig Late Harvest sauvignon blanc—a refreshing dessert wine aged in new French oak barrels with lemony and grapefruity hints—Honig’s single vineyard cab, and a library selection.
Eagles Trace's vintage-producing veterans lead parties of up to eight connoisseurs into the depths of their winery, housed within the stone-hewn walls of an underground cave. During the 90- to 120-minute tour, guests taste up to four varieties from the collection, swirling and sniffing their sample before determining whether they got the merlot, the cabernet sauvignon, or cough syrup. Groups then enter into the caves to taste one of the winery's creations straight from the barrel, where it is kept at a constant 60 degrees–62 degrees by the cool subterranean air. At the tour's conclusion, visitors adopt their favorite bottle to take home, such as the cuddly 2005 Latitude 38, a bordeaux-style blend that is house-trained and boasts flavors of blackberries, black currant, and plums.
Benziger Family Winery hosts daily tram tours that depart on the half-hour from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., with the exception of noon. Imagery Estate Winery hosts tastings Monday–Friday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Charles Creek Vineyard Tasting Room & Gallery is situated in a charming 1890s storefront on the historic Sonoma Plaza. In addition to offering the opportunity to taste and purchase the small lot, hard to find Charles Creek wines the room also serves as a showcase for local artists with new exhibits hanging every 60 days.
During a one-hour wine and cheese tasting, palates take flight across four of B.R. Cohn's flagship wines, each paired with a specific selection of Sonoma County artisan cheese. Sonoma, an area known for producing rich, flavorful wines and equally delicious edibles, is the lovechild of the best parents nature has to offer. Its fields benefit from nourishing underground hot springs—a key factor in fending off frost—and a bounty of sunshine resulting from nearby, coastal-fog-clearing mountains. In honor of this natural wonder, tasters can focus deeply during their visit, mentally honoring the complex process and flavor of each nibble and waft. Allow the sensorial waves to hit your brain's jubilation receptors like a vengeance-driven baseball bat into the side of a luxury mystery-mobile.