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Monday, July 31, 2017

Appointment-only Tasting Rooms

Two things have really increased the foot traffic in Sonoma County wine tasting rooms over the past few years:
  • The economy is in high gear, especially in the Bay Area where most of the visitors come from
  • The Sonoma County Tourism office has done a great job of promoting Sonoma County
There have been some expected changes with this like increased weekend traffic on the roads and higher hotel costs. One change maybe wasn't expected.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Santa Rosa's Wine & Weed Symposium

Beginning in 2018 the new gold rush is on in California as weed becomes legal.

On August 3rd in Santa Rosa a meeting of wine and cannabis folks will take place hosted by a wine marketing outfit. The event is sold out with most attendees coming from the wine biz. The two are looking for what the corporate folks might call common synergies. That is, how can they work together for the good of both. This is interesting as the two would seem to be in conflict in many areas.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Best Sonoma County Restaurant Wine Lists

Wine Spectator magazine has an annual competition for best restaurant wine lists. For 2017 here are the restaurants in Sonoma County. There are many more nearby in Napa and the San Francisco Bay Area.

Monday, July 24, 2017

It had to happen: Well Hung Vineyard

Low-hanging fruit. Well-formed grape bunches hanging heavily from the vine. So someone named a wine label after what grape bunches do--hang from the vine. A double meaning? No way! They plan to offer stiff competition. But they are up to the task.  Just wait, I've got more!

How the Well Hung Vineyard came to be

Friday, July 21, 2017

The Hosemaster is Done!

The who? His full blog name is The HoseMaster of Wine. It is satire on the usually too serious premium wine world. He was an insider, you know, one of "them." At some point he realized how unimportant the whole thing was and let the wine world have it with both barrels.

If you think many wine folks are dorky, or you regularly read wine mags, or you are a wine nerd you should read through some of his posts from the nine years he's been doing this. Many are laugh out loud funny.

The Hoser will be missed.


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Monday, July 17, 2017

Hooker's House -- and Wine

Yeah, I thought that would get your attention.

Between stints in the army during the Mexican-American War and later in the Civil War Joseph Hooker settled in Sonoma for a time. His Hooker House was built in the 1850s and since the 1970s has been used by various commercial establishments. There was even a Hooker House tea room and I'm sure the ladies giggled occasionally over the name. Yes, there are stories of prostitutes following Hooker's army around and that may be where the name hooker came from to mean prostitute.

The highly-regarded Bedrock Wine Company recently leased the building for a tasting room. Interestingly, Bedrock farms grapes grown on what was Hooker's ranch in nearby Glen Ellen. I'm sure the tasting room will be very popular and I expect some giggles over the name as they promise to call it something like, "Bedrock Wines at Hooker House." I don't know if they will charge by the wine flight or by the hour.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Sonoma County Restaurants -- For Beer

So yeah, all of your meals don't have to be wine-centric especially if you've spent a good part of the day tasting wine. Why not eat somewhere with good food and an excellent beer selection?

Some of these are restaurants that just happen to have great beer. A few are pub operations that happen to have good food.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Sonoma County's Best Winery Experiences

  From Wine Enthusiast magazine a list of what one writer considers our best "experiences" (whatever that means exactly). Anyway, it's a good list of some of our finest wineries. Most of these places require an appointment. While making and keeping appointments can be a bit of a pain it's a great way to visit on busy summer and autumn weekends. You'll get a better experience when not having to deal with people standing two-deep at the tasting bar.

Another lousy day at Iron Horse Vineyards  :)
  If you go with tasting appointments ask the winery how long their tasting will take then allow for travel and lunch break time between appointments. You should not commit to more than three in a day.

Sonoma's Best Winery Experiences