For Memorial Day in 2012, we headed to wine country in California. We’d visited the year before, but it quickly became one of our favourite destinations so we ignored our “don’t go places more than once” rule. We flew into San Francisco and then headed North (making a brief stop at Muir Woods).
We stayed at the Haydon Street Inn, in Healdsburg. We’re not big B&B people, but this place had a great vibe. The rooms were very private, breakfast was SCRUMPTIOUS, and every afternoon they hosted an outdoor happy hour in their lovely garden.
We hired a car (and more importantly, a designated driver) for two days of winery hopping. It was pricey, but cheaper than a DUI so worth it. We had appointments at a handful of wineries, and augmented the itinerary with suggestions from the driver and people we met along the way. In three days, we hit:
- Iron Horse – one of our favourites. THE place for bubbly. Outdoor tasting area with outstanding views.
- Thomas George Estates – popped in here after Iron Horse, based on a recommendation from someone we met there.
- Alexander Valley Vineyards – Great cave tour followed by a cheese pairing. Another fave.
- Stryker – Stopped in here to kill time before Ramey.
- Ramey – No vineyard to ogle, but the wine – oh the wine !
- Dry Creek Vineyards – Stopped in here on our way back to the B&B. We were tastefully buzzed by this point and accidentally joined their wine club.
- Rochioli – Lovely garden and a refreshing Rose.
- Everett Ridge – Stopped here based on a suggestion from the driver. Wine paired with cheese balls.
- Truett Hurst – lovely garden, goats, and a fish-full river (polarised glasses required)
- Trentadue – meh
- Jordan – another fave. Do the Library tasting.
- Hall Rutherford- a must. THE coolest cave EVER.
- Cade – off the beaten track in Howell Mountain – worth a visit for sure.
We also ate pretty well:
- Dry Creek Kitchen – celeb chef Charlie Palmer. Enough said.
- Bistro Ralph – small and quaint, with outdoor seating
- Barndiva – an ABSOLUTE must – if you can only pick one place, go here
- Grillwoods – best_brekkie_ever