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Old 04-17-2010, 10:32 PM
 
Location: Golden, CO
138 posts, read 302,446 times
Reputation: 27

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We have one day to visit the Sonoma or Napa Valley areas and are looking for some suggestions for wineries worth the time and expense.

We were leaning more towards Sonoma since I've heard it's more laid back. We also aren't necessarily interested in tours of wineries, more sight-seeing, tastings and a place to have a picnic lunch.

Thanks
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Old 04-18-2010, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Mountain Ranch, CA The heart of Calaveras County
6,520 posts, read 13,395,228 times
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Nobody goes there anymore, it's too crowded (Thank you Mr. Berra) Come on over to our neck of the woods.

Calaveras Winegrape Alliance Wine Sierra Foothills California
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Old 04-18-2010, 04:48 PM
 
Location: California
26,711 posts, read 20,574,996 times
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I was just talking about this with some people yesterday. Although I've lived in CA my whole life I haven't gone wine tasting in the Napa area in 25+ years. Before that I went fairly often. Apparently everything is different now, wineries charge money, some require that you be a member, it's crowded as hell, etc. I remember just driving up the road and stopping at every/any little wineries we wanted with no problem. We would pack our own lunch and use the picnic tables set up on the grounds, it was a cheap way of entertaining ourselves. From what I hear I wouldn't recognize it anymore and I was told that using their tables was a no-no. SIGH. Sorry I can't be of any help.
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Old 04-19-2010, 08:44 AM
 
Location: 3814′45″N 12237′53″W
4,153 posts, read 7,465,473 times
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Yes Sonoma is more laid back. Napa is too freakin' crowded. The traffic on 29 is a nightmare.

Cline Cellars
Gloria Ferrer

B R Cohn

and for a complete non-wine tasting event...beer!

Lagunitas Brewery has an excellent beer garden and tour as well!
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Old 04-19-2010, 09:31 AM
 
12 posts, read 24,365 times
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I like Jacuzzi, which is across from Cline Cellars. Good wine, no tasting fee and they also have olive oil tasting as well.
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Old 04-19-2010, 11:39 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
53,216 posts, read 50,119,341 times
Reputation: 24082
Quote:
Originally Posted by eagle06 View Post
We have one day to visit the Sonoma or Napa Valley areas and are looking for some suggestions for wineries worth the time and expense.

We were leaning more towards Sonoma since I've heard it's more laid back. We also aren't necessarily interested in tours of wineries, more sight-seeing, tastings and a place to have a picnic lunch.

Thanks
oh how I wish we were going to be there. I would take Sonoma.

In 2 days we land at LAX for a few days before our cruise and one of our ports on the cruise is San Francisco, but we won't get to do the winery tour, we are meeting friends iin San Francisco..I hope next time we will do the tour, hopefully in the fall.

Nita
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Old 04-19-2010, 01:41 PM
 
18 posts, read 35,636 times
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I've been to both Napa and Sonoma several times. Napa is great if you'd like to try lots of wineries in one day. Sonoma is more spread out and scenic.

Winery suggestions

Napa: Frank Family, PlumpJack, Pride Mountain (if you'd like to see wine caves), Trefethen
Sonoma: Hartford Family, Lynmar, Ledson

In Sonoma, take a drive out to Jenner to see the mouth of the Russian River, its beautiful!
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Old 04-19-2010, 03:07 PM
 
37 posts, read 56,410 times
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I would recommend Benziger in Sonoma Valley. For $15 dollars a person, this tasting includes a tour of the bio-dynamic farm on a tractor ride, tour of the unique wine caves, and wine tasting at the end. Otherwise you can head straight to the tasting room. But the farm/grounds/vineyards are increadibly beautiful. It is nestled in the hills/mountains.
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Old 04-23-2010, 07:23 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
2,167 posts, read 3,120,231 times
Reputation: 1882
If you are up there, I'd highly recommend Ferrari-Carrano winery. I went to their tasting room several years after trying their wines. I was put off by the crowds but the wine was great. It might be worth a quick stop.

You are probably doing this because you are in or are visiting the San Francisco area. If you had more time, I'd suggest taking a few days and visiting the wineries at Paso Robles. I've been to the area a few times. Paso Robles is what Napa used to be like, many, many years ago.
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