Of course, an excuse is never truly needed to drink wine, but that was my attempt to be clever. This past weekend my wife and I had the opportunity to head back to one of our favorite destinations, Sonoma, CA. This trip wasn’t all about the wine experience, rather it was to celebrate the marriage of one of my closest high school friends.
After approximately a decade of courtship, my buddy finally decided to take the plunge. If you are going to wait that long, you better have a great party to celebrate – and what better place to do it but in Sonoma? Sonoma is an amazing little town about an hour north of San Francisco at the base of the Sonoma Valley wine region. Littered with incredible wineries, restaurants and outdoor activities; Sonoma truly provides something for every taste.
Our taste, of course, is for the juice so let’s get to it! We began the trip with lunch at The Red Grape. This little spot right off the main square is a fantastic lunch destination. Serving up wood fired pizzas and fresh salads… they really showcase the laid back, yet high quality culture that embodies Sonoma. Do not miss the bruschetta appetizer with creamy Burrata cheese paired with a great local Pinot. Some of our favorites come from the well-known Durell vineyard that is just a 10-minute drive from the square.
The wedding was that evening and took place at the Cornerstone event space in Carneros across from Gloria Ferrer. This space is an amazing venue filled with gardens, water features, wine tasting rooms, etc. Stop by anytime on your way in/out of the valley for a wonderfully unique experience.
The next day we set up a picnic at Scribe winery. This was a great way to kill an afternoon! We had a picnic table all to ourselves on top of the hill just in front of the little ranch house that overlooks the beautiful estate vineyard. A group of 6 of us polished off 4 bottles of superb vino ranging from a tart skin-fermented Chard to the full-bodied estate pinot to the robust, yet incredibly fruit-forward Syrah (this was the winner in my book).
To wrap up the weekend my wife and I hit the pavement the next morning to keep our word to continue our half marathon training. The 5.5 mile run actually went by fairly quickly as we meandered through charming neighborhoods, vineyard trails and city parks. Sonoma Train Town, the awesome local amusement park complete with a 4 mile train ride will have to wait until we bring the little man with us next time. Sonoma definitely holds a special place in our hearts. I hope you get a chance to experience it someday too.