Nov 27, 2017
Photo above: B.R.Cohn, 15000 Sonoma Hwy, Glen Ellen
By Aleta Parseghian
Let’s be honest, not all of us enjoy holiday shopping. Actually, some of us dread it. The stress of crowds, finding parking, waiting in lines, being assaulted by fluorescent lights and pushy customers is enough to give you an anxiety attack. At least that’s what shopping is like for me, so I avoid it at all costs. I prefer a more passive approach. One in which I can have some fun while still buying gifts for friends and loved ones. Since we live in the wine country and have an incredible bounty at our fingertips, wine is always an excellent gift.
Wine tasting may not be for everyone, but I think we can all agree that it can be loads of fun if done with friends. I am fortunate to have an amazing group of girlfriends who enjoy wine just as much as I do, so there is nothing we love more than enjoying it together.
I solicited these friends for recommendations on their absolute favorite FUN wineries. I wanted a list of wineries where you could buy a bottle and relax on a couch or patio and enjoy the company of some of your favorite people. Where the sommelier is both knowledgeable and lively, who doesn’t mind if we get a little loud or ask for extra wine in our glass.
If you have wine lovers in your life, or want to give relatives out of state a little taste of our home, then make it fun for yourself and spend a day visiting these wonderful wineries with your friends and get some holiday shopping done at the same time.
But please keep in mind that this list is based on mine and my friends’ personal experiences and tastes, which may not be similar to yours. These are not the ONLY fun wineries in Sonoma County, just the ones we have enjoyed personally. If there is a winery that you would recommend to me, I would love to hear about it! Email me your recommendations at firstname.lastname@example.org.
15000 Sonoma Hwy., Glen Ellen
Beautiful setting with 360˚ views, oyster bar every weekend, live music on Sundays, and excellent olive oils and balsamic vinegars.
Francis Ford Coppola
300 Via Archimedes, Geyserville
Stunning views, two large pools, bocce courts, on-site restaurant and entertainment throughout the year.
Jacuzzi Family Vineyards
24724 Arnold Dr, Sonoma
Stunning Italian architecture, lively events such as the monthly “Pizza in the Piazza”, panoramic views, and an extensive variety of affordable Italian wines. Reserve ahead of parties of over 5.
3291 Westside Rd., Healdsburg
Panoramic views of the Russian River Valley, lovely patio and outdoor lounge.
Russian River Vineyards
5700 Hwy 116 N., Forestville
Brand new tasting room, outdoor tasting lounge, exquisite gardens, bean bag toss, award-winning wines.
4401 Slusser Rd, Windsor
Expansive outdoor lounge, croquet lawn, easily accommodates large parties, famous chardonnay. Reserve a tasting at least 24 hours in advance.
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