16 Best Wine Tasting Rooms in Sonoma County

  • Wine
  • by DEVIN PARR
  • on APRIL 19, 2024
  • 90551
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Wine

16 Best Wine Tasting Rooms in Sonoma County

By Devin Parr April 19, 2024

Sonoma Wine Country is of course known for rolling hills and valleys, coastal vineyards, impressive winery estates, and lush forests, making it a top wine-and-nature-lover’s bucket-list destination. However, the tasting rooms of Sonoma are where the real fun happens.

From lively stand-up tasting bars to urban-style wineries with live music to lavish sit-down private tasting suites, there are winery experiences for every type of wine lover. We’ve compiled a list of 16 of our favorite spots for the best wine tasting Sonoma County has to offer.

J Vineyards & Winery
Photo courtesy of J Vineyards & Winery

This Russian River Valley destination known for small-production Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and sparkling wines offers a range of reservation-only tasting experiences. Head to the J Bubble Room to indulge in the five-course tasting menu inspired by local and seasonal fare, paired with J’s selection of award-winning wines (squid ink fettuccine and sparkling, anyone?), or enjoy the Legacy Lounge Wine Tasting, featuring flights of five of the winery’s most exclusive wines in a gorgeous outdoor setting. Those who want a more casual experience may opt for J’s Signature Tasting and sample a selection of five Russian River Valley wines. No matter which experience you choose, you’re bound to be delighted.

Insider Tip: Looking for an excuse to join one of Sonoma’s wine clubs? Consider becoming a member at J Vineyards. Members enjoy quarterly shipments of exquisite wines, but the true allure lies in the exclusive events. From festive release parties to signature bar tastings and luxurious Bubble Room experiences, there’s something for every wine enthusiast. Choose from three different membership tiers—Signature, Experience, and Elegance—depending on your preferences and the quantity of wine you wish to cellar.

11447 Old Redwood Highway, Healdsburg, CA 95448 (707) 431-5430

Gloria Ferrer
Photo courtesy of Gloria Ferrer

Love all things bubbly? Gloria Ferrer is the Sonoma tasting room for you! Catalonia, Spain is revered for its sparkling wines, known as cava, and that’s exactly where the inspiration for Gloria Ferrer originated. Owners, José and Gloria Ferrer came to California from Barcelona in hopes of producing a similar wine to the Spanish sparkling wines they knew and loved. As they say, the rest is history. Pay a visit to their beautiful winery and you’ll find sweeping views over Sonoma Valley paired with exclusive experiences where guests can walk through the vineyards and get behind-the-scenes. For the ultimate tasting, book the Vineyard Excursion, where you’ll explore the property, learning about both sustainability and clonal practices, before sitting down to a five-course meal paired with signature wines.

Insider Tip: What goes better than brunch and bubbles? Stop by for a family-style Spanish brunch on Saturdays and Sundays, hosted on their stunning Vista Terrace. You’ll find favorites like pan con tomate, tortilla espanola, chorizo hash browns, and more, all paired with Gloria Ferrer’s delicious sparkling wines.

23555 Arnold Drive, Sonoma, CA 95476, (866) 845-6742

This Certified Sustainable, family-owned winery has been producing award-winning wines for over 50 years. St. Francis has one of the most comprehensive selections of wine tasting experiences in Sonoma County. Experience the art of pairing wine and cuisine during the elevated Wine and Food Pairing Experience, with seasonal courses crafted by Executive Chef Peter Janiak, enjoy the more relaxed Estate Pairings on the Vineyard Portico, or opt for a simple Artisan Flight while taking in the stunning vista of the Sonoma Valley.

Insider Tip: Care to work up a bit of a sweat while you taste? Try the Tour de St. Francis. Learn about the winery’s history, viticulture, and winemaking while sipping and propelling the sustainable, pedal-powered tasting trolley forward with your fellow passengers. It’s an outdoor tasting experience you won’t forget.

100 Pythian Road at Highway 12, Santa Rosa, CA 95409, (888) 675-9463

MacRostie
Photo courtesy of MacRostie

MacRostie prides itself on their signature Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs, grown in their vineyards that stretch across both the Russian River Valley and Green Valley. Steve MacRostie and Head Winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen set aside over 130 small-batch fermentations from each vintage, a unique process that helps to broaden the palette for each vintage. Their beautiful tasting room, with sweeping views of Sonoma, provides gorgeous scenery that’s the perfect backdrop for sipping a glass of Chardonnay. The winery’s Signature Experience is a great way to get acquainted with their wines as your personal Wine Ambassador will select MacRostie wines based on your preferences.

Insider Tip: Book the Library Vintage Experience, a rare opportunity to sample some of MacRostie’s treasured aged wines straight from the cellar. Held in the shadow of the properties secret Oak Tree, guests will sample six different wines—three Chardonnays and three Pinot Noirs—along with delectable charcuterie from Healdsburg’s Journeymen Meat Co. This experience feels extra exclusive with a cap at eight individuals.

4605 Westside Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 473-9303

Freeman Vineyard & Winery
Photo Courtesy of Freeman Vineyard & Winery

Pioneers of cool-climate Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays, Freeman Winery has helped define a more thoughtful and sophisticated winemaking style in the Sonoma region. To experience their exceptional wines and take in the stunning views of their first estate vineyard, book a private tasting and tour of their small-lot winery. Your tasting will take place in the quiet, serene cave where you’ll have the opportunity to savor Freeman’s signature Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays from the West Sonoma Coast and Green Valley of the Russian River Valley.

Insider Tip: Have an upcoming special event? Consider reserving the Freeman Wine Cave. Able to accommodate up to 40 guests, this intimate space is perfect for rehearsal dinners and other small celebrations. You’ll dine, or mingle, among the wine barrels while sipping their cool-climate varietals.  

1300 Montgomery Road, Sebastopol, CA 95472, (707) 823-6937

Seghesio
Bocce ball, Photo courtesy of Seghesio
Seghesio
Zinfandel at Seghesio, Photo courtesy of Seghesio

The roots of Seghesio’s family vineyards stretch all the way back to 1895 when the very first grape vines were planted on this Sonoma property. Known for their high-quality Zinfandel, Seghesio also pays homage to their Italian roots by producing varietals like Barbera and Chianti. Explore more of the Seghesio family’s Piedmontese ancestry through the Italian Heritage Flight where you’ll try favorites like Vermentino and Sangiovese—which is produced from the oldest Sangiovese plantings in North America. Or go classic by sipping their acclaimed Zinfandels during the Classico Tasting.

Insider Tip: Don’t have a reservation? You’re in luck! Seghesio invites spontaneity with The Grove Experience where walk-ins, children, and pets are welcome. Bring your own picnic and grab a glass of wine (or bottle) to enjoy at their outdoor lounge.

700 Grove Street, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 433-3579

Kenwood Vineyards
Photo Courtesy of Kenwood Vineyards

Founded in 1970, this historic Sonoma Valley winery is known for its selection of single-vineyard, appellation, and low-production wines produced from grapes grown in some of the very best vineyards of Sonoma County. Taste Russian River Valley Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, Sonoma Coast Rosé of Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc, and Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as limited edition wines from the famous Jack London Vineyard, named for the celebrated California author.

Insider Tip: Kenwood Vineyards welcomes well-behaved pets and children at the winery. If bringing your dog, be sure to book an outdoor tasting so your furry friend can enjoy the stunning Sonoma County setting while you sip.

9592 Sonoma Highway, Kenwood, CA 95452, (707) 282-4228

Photos courtesy of Jordan Vineyard & Winery

Few Sonoma County wineries capture the extraordinary Wine Country experience quite like Jordan Winery, tucked among the rolling hills of Alexander Valley in Healdsburg. If you aren’t wooed by the Library and Cellar Room, where no architectural or aesthetic detail is overlooked (including the lovingly-curated collection of vintage books, antiques, and one-of-a-kind objets d’art on display), you will be by one of the many tastings and seasonal lunches on offer at this iconic property. Book the winery’s newest experience, the Chef’s Terrace Tasting, and enjoy a one-of-a-kind culinary affair with views of estate vineyards and gardens.

Insider Tip: More than three quarters—or about 900 acres—of the Jordan estate has been preserved as natural habitat, including the nation’s largest pollinator sanctuary. Learn about some of these sustainability efforts through Jordan’s extended tour and tasting options, which feature not only world-class wines from Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, but also a first-hand look at the history and future of both Jordan Winery and Sonoma County.

1474 Alexander Valley Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 431-5250

Ledson Winery & Vineyards | Charene Beltramo
Photo Courtesy of Ledson Winery & Vineyards | Charene Beltramo

It’s no wonder this winery—appropriately referred to as “The Castle”—was called “One of the twelve most impressive wineries in the world,” by VinePair. This 16,000-square-foot Gothic, French-Normandy-style architectural wonder in the heart of Sonoma Valley is quite the place to taste some wine. Sip Ledson Winery’s selection of small-lot, top-scoring wines at one of three beautifully-designed tasting bars – each named for a member of the family—or by the fireplace in one of the opulent personal tasting suites, hosted by a highly-trained wine consultant.

Insider Tip: Feeling peckish? For only $15 per person, you can add on a gourmet cheese and charcuterie plate to your private tasting experience to help soak up those handcrafted wines.

7335 Highway 12, Kenwood, CA 95409, (707) 537-3810

Photos courtesy of Dry Creek Vineyard

Named for the AVA in which the winery is nestled, Dry Creek Vineyard has honed their focus to produce beautiful wines that are a testament to this Sonoma appellation. What began as a love of French wine and a prune orchard has now grown into a thriving vineyard that produces some of Sonoma’s most coveted, Sauvignon Blancs and Zinfandel. Dive right into what makes these wines so special in one of Dry Creek Vineyard’s Seated Tasting Experiences. You can choose from the Zinfandels of Dry Creek or Bordeaux Varietals Tasting, depending on your personal preference. Tempted to purchase a few bottles to take home? This tasting option is waived when you get two bottles to go!

Insider Tip: Go off road, quite literally, on the Off-Road Vineyard Tour which takes guests on a tour through Dry Creek Vineyard’s historic property (this was the first winery built in Dry Creek after Prohibition!) via UTV. You’ll learn about their sustainable farming practices and habitat restoration project while sipping their world-class wines.

3770 Lambert Bridge Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 433-1000

Imagery Estate
Photo courtesy of Imagery Estate Winery

Imagery Estate‘s Upper Ridge Vineyard is situated at the top of a mountain and ideal for growing an array of varietals. This is an important part of the process here as Imagery is known for producing rare wines. They pay particular attention to crafting wines like White Burgundy, Malbec, and Lagrein, all of which aren’t commonly produced here. Head to their Tasting Room, voted one of the best in Sonoma, where you can sample these unique, limited-production wines by glass or flight. If you’d rather take your tasting outside, book the Wine Country Picnic Package for Two. You’ll dive into Imagery’s unique wines with a specialist while enjoying a picnic and observing the beautiful grounds from your reserved Adirondack chairs.

Insider Tip: Imagery Estate’s dedication to wine spills over into their love of art. Investigate this combination of passions on the Collections Tasting with Gallery Tour. Led by a wine expert, you’ll sip five wines, paired with local cheese and accouterments, and peruse the art gallery which is home to over 100 contemporary pieces.

14335 Highway 12, Glen Ellen, CA 95442, (707) 935-3000

BACA Wines
Photo Courtesy of BACA Wines

Quality wine meets a spirit of fun at this Healdsburg tasting room. Panoramic vineyard views welcome visitors in search of award-winning wines made primarily from Zinfandel sourced from many of California’s top growing regions, like Sonoma’s Dry Creek Valley, Rockpile, and Russian River Valley, as well as Calistoga, Paso Robles, and Mendocino. The BACA tasting room also offers sips of sister winery WALT selections, so guests can either stick to BACA Zinfandel or mix it up with some WALT Pinot Noir.

Insider Tip: For a totally different, interactive tasting, book the BACA Sensory Experience. Indulge your inner child as you try to match the correct flavor descriptor to each wine in the flight of BACA Zinfandel.

779 Westside Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 721-8616

Landmark Vineyards
Photo Courtesy of Landmark Vineyards

Nestled in the picturesque Sonoma Valley region of Kenwood, at the foot of the Mayacamas Mountains, is Landmark Vineyards’ Kenwood Estate. Surrounded by lush gardens and stunning views of Sugarloaf Ridge, this beautiful winery is a welcoming place to sample world-class Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines. While a signature tasting is sure to please, if you’re with a group, book the Bocce Ball Court Experience for a fun afternoon of Bocce, cheese and charcuterie, and, of course, wine.

Insider Tip: Landmark is known for its welcoming hospitality, so it’s not surprising the winery throws some fun, food-centric events. Their Half Shells & Chardonnay Lunch and Annual Lobster Feed are always a tasty hit.

101 Adobe Canyon Road, Kenwood, CA 95452, (707) 833-0053

WALT Wines
Photo courtesy of WALT Wines

This charming, cottage-like tasting room, located just off the Sonoma square, offers guests a laid-back setting in which to taste the winery’s award-winning Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from vineyards spanning the Pacific Coast. Book a tasting of current releases or opt for the Root 101 tasting to experience “1000 Miles of Pinot” selections of single-vineyard Pinot Noir paired with carefully-curated seasonal bites. Got a sweet tooth? Try the delicious Wine & Chocolate tasting to find out just how well chocolate can match up with Pinot Noir.

Insider Tip: WALT also has a location at Napa’s Oxbow Public Market to suit all of your wine travel plans.

380 First Street West, Sonoma, CA 95476, (707) 933-4440

Aperture Cellars
Photo Courtesy of Aperture Cellars

This winery may just take your breath away with its striking architecture, gorgeous photography from famed photographer Andy Katz, light-as-air stemware, floor-to-ceiling windows that frame Sonoma County’s natural beauty, and elegant, cool-climate wines. Art and wine lovers alike will delight in each experience this Healdsburg property offers, like the Soil Series Experience, which introduces guests to Aperture’s Bordeaux-inspired wines, and the Site Series Experience, which allows guests to level up their understanding and appreciation of wunderkind winemaker Jesse Katz’s vision and talent through site-driven and single-vineyard wines.

Insider Tip: Aperture offers quite a selection of curated and bespoke virtual tasting options so you can sip these top-scoring Sonoma County wines from the comfort of your own home and on your own schedule.

12291 Old Redwood Highway, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 200-7891

Photo Courtesy of Gretchen Gause Photography

This tasting room in downtown Healdsburg takes not only its name—a nod to the cool coastal area from where Marine Layer crafts its wines—but its entire aesthetic from coastal California inspiration. Not only will guests be able to take in the warm and bright atmosphere, created by local design duo HommeBoys, while sipping award-winning Sonoma Coast wines made from Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, but they will also enjoy an exciting culinary experience created by neighboring restaurant Little Saint, a 100% plant-based restaurant with a fresh new food and cocktail menu update from chef Bryan Oliver.

Insider Tip: Marine Layer is sure to become one of Healdsburg’s most coveted tasting room reservations, so be sure to join their wine club for complimentary visits, as well as fully customizable wine allocations, access to exclusive bottlings, and invitations to members-only events.

308 B Center Street, Healdsburg, CA 95448, (707) 395-0830

Conclusion

Whether you’re looking to savor bold reds from the misty Sonoma Coast or crisp whites from the sunshine-filled Sonoma Valley, you can’t go wrong seeking out Pinot Noirs, Chardonnays, Cabernets, and many more in this expansive Northern California wine region. Sit back, relax, and let the wine do the talking at any of these Sonoma tasting rooms.