I participated in the 35th Annual Healdsburg Barrel Tasting Weekend in Northern Sonoma County where you purchase a wristband, which allows you to sample wines still in the barrel (often for another 4-6 months) as well as the current wines at most of these wineries. All of that for under $50!! They had me at barrel tasting ; )
We crossed the Golden Gate Bridge into Marin County and were on our way to Healdsburg, where we would stay for the weekend to explore as many of the more than 120 participating wineries as we could!
Friday, we started in downtown Healdsburg tasting from the wine shops who had barrel tasting. The weather was absolutely gorgeous – allowing us to run around comfortable in short sleeves and dresses.
Saturday, we explored Alexander Valley, sampling wines from around 5 wineries. It was amazing to taste the difference between the wines from the 3 different regions: Alexander, Russian River and Dry Creek Valleys and how different the tastes were though they are relatively close in location. Some were mellow, others bold; some were sweet, others had more of a bite.
Sunday, we explored a few Dry Creek Valley wineries after taking a short but glorious bike ride, basking in the sunny day.
Even driving around the area was a pleasant experience; I enjoyed the open space and views of nature and winemaking in the process!
We enjoyed some of the most delicious food I’ve ever had this weekend! If you enjoy wine and food, this annual event is definitely for you!
Now having been to both Napa and Sonoma Valley wineries, I know I’ll get some flack for saying this, but I enjoy Sonoma a lot more. Not only do I generally like the wines a little better, but the region is less touristy (even on this great weekend!), and the people working at the wineries are more down to Earth I’ve felt. See the bottom of this page for the website.