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4 Reasons to Visit J Vineyards This Summer

  • on MAY 23, 2019

J Vineyards & Winery

Photo courtesy of J Vineyards & Winery

J Vineyards & Winery , located just south of Healdsburg in the Russian River Valley, is well worth a visit any time of year, but there’s just something extra magical during the summer months when the weather is at its finest, the grapes are growing in the estate vineyards, and the patio is bustling with satisfied guests.

J Vineyards & Winery


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For more information about events or assistance booking your reservation, please call  831-659-3500 .


June 8 (National Rose Day)

Visit us on National Rosé Day as we celebrate the release of our 2023 Rosé of Pinot Noir. Enjoy an incredible afternoon of oysters paired with a flight of limited-release wines, including our Rosé of Pinot Noir.

Seating Tastings: 11:00am to 6:00pm Price:  $65 per person | $50 wine club Where: Talbott Vineyards Tasting Room East side of Lincoln St. between 5th & 6th Ave. Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA 93921

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Luminous Chardonnay Release Tasting Experience

Join us in the tasting room to toast the release of our 2023 Luminous Chardonnay. Enjoy Luminous Chardonnay in a curated flight of our estate-grown Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs paired with locally-sourced small plates of the season.

Members must log in to Tock with the email associated with their membership to make reservations.


Celebrate the release of our Talbott Sparkling Brut. Join us for a flight of limited-release wines, including our Sparkling Brut, paired with caviar, potato chips and crème fraiche.

Seating Tastings:  11:00am to 6:00pm

Price:  $75 per person | $60 wine club

Where:  Talbott Vineyards Tasting Room
East side of Lincoln St. between 5th & 6th Ave.
Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA 93921

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Hour of Operations

Open Daily 11 AM – 6 PM

East side of Lincoln St. between 5 th  & 6 th  Ave, Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA 93921

Inside … J Vineyards & Winery

04 Nov, 2020

J Vineyards & Winery produce a range of exceptional sparkling and varietal wines in Russian River Valley AVA, which sits at the heart of Californian wine country. Winerist spent some time discovering what makes J Vineyards so special.

J Vineyards & Winery occupies a prime position in the heart of California’s Russian River Valley, one of the most famous premium wine country in the USA. Founded in 1986, the aim of this beautiful winery is to create exceptional sparkling wines in the traditional method (made famous by Champagne!), as well as outstanding examples of varietal wines. J Vineyards creates a range of superlative wines, from classic Chardonnays and poised, precise Pinot Gris, to refined and elegant Pinot Noirs – all of which display the diverse winemaking potential of the Russian River Valley to the fullest. Fruit forward flavours and bright, refreshing acidity make these wines some of the liveliest and most sophisticated wines to be found anywhere in the region.

j vineyards visit

Photo Courtesy of J Vineyards & Winery and Wine Rabble

The J Vineyards Winery is led by Head Winemaker Nicole Hitchcock, a Viticulture and Oenology graduate from renowned Californian University U.C. Davis. Hitchcock spent time working in Italy and Western Australia before returning to her home state to pursue her natural curiosity and passion for wine. After stints working for some of the state’s biggest producers including Robert Mondavi and E & J Gallo Winery, Nicole became Head Winemaker at J Vineyards in 2015. Nicole attributes her interest in wine to her time growing up in California’s Central Coast and working in some of the region’s best restaurants.

‘If I wanted to identify a single moment or wine that really unlocked my interest in wine, it’s from around this time,’ says Nicole, ‘One evening after a busy night working at an Italian trattoria in Carmel known for its magnificent wine list, the owner brought out a bottle of Amarone and poured me a glass. I was enthralled. For me, it expanded my comprehension of how diverse the world of wine is; how each different region produces its own style and has its own unique qualities. It wasn’t the first wine I’d ever tasted, of course, but I remember that moment being a revelation.’

j vineyards visit

Photo Courtesy of J Vineyards

Under Nicole’s steady hand, J Vineyards incorporates many elements of Old World techniques and philosophies into its winemaking. From hand harvesting fruit for sparkling wine overnight to guarantee cool conditions and the best quality fruit, to sensitive use of new and old French oak barrels, each step in the process is carefully considered to create the best possible finished wine. J Vineyards were the first US producer to import a Coquard press from Europe and are the proud owners of a Coquard press, used to extract the juice from newly-harvested grapes; Coquard are a by-word for quality and it is very rare to find one outside Europe!

What Makes Russian River Valley AVA So Special?

j vineyards visit

The mission of J Vineyards & Winery is to create wines which are elegant and expressive of their particular growing area. But what is it that makes Russian River Valley AVA unique?

The wider Sonoma Country region where the Russian River Valley is located is widely acknowledged as being the birthplace of fine wine production in the USA – it’s a huge area, covering some 390,000 hectares comprising a number of designated AVA (American Viticultural Area) regions, with Russian River sitting right at the heart of the action. Russian River AVA is one of the coolest winemaking regions in Sonoma, thanks to fog and wind from the Pacific Coast which makes its way inland via the Petaluma Gap, a break in the Northern Coast mountains. The ocean fog in particular has a significant cooling influence, moderating the sometimes oppressive Californian heat as it rolls in from the sea overnight and retreats as the sun rises. This leads to an often significant reduction in temperatures at night, slowing the accumulation of sugar in the grapes and allowing them to retain higher levels of acidity which are sometimes unachievable in warmer areas of California!

j vineyards visit

When it comes to sparkling wine production, acidity is king, and so the cool Russian River climate lends itself perfectly to grape-growing for sparkling wine, particularly the classic Champagne grape varieties of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The J Vineyards vines are spread across a number of diverse growing sites, each with their own particular soil types and often micro-climates. From the Foggy Bend Vineyard – we bet you can guess the conditions in this particular vineyard! – which is ideal for flavourful Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, to the beautiful Cooper Vineyard right at the heart of the J Vineyards estate which is the ideal location for bright, tropical Pinot Gris. Regardless of specific vineyard conditions, every single vineyard at J Vineyards is united by exceptional quality grapes and the fantastic, super-premium wines they produce!

J Vineyards & Winery – An Unmissable Stop on your Californian Adventure!

j vineyards visit

As well as their portfolio of exceptional wines, J Vineyards & Winery are also renowned for being one of the finest winery dining experiences in California. The immaculate Visitor’s Centre sits less than 10 minutes from Healdsburg, CA, and offers guests a quintessential Californian wine experience, with the warmest of welcomes guaranteed and a whole host of food and tasting experiences to choose from.

Indulge your inner foodie with an unforgettable 5-course tasting menu in the lively Bubble Room , the domain of Executive Chef Carl Shelton. Chef Carl uses the most innovative cooking techniques alongside the freshest seasonal Sonoma produce to construct a unique gourmet experience reflecting the very best of California cuisine. Each course is matched with one of Nicole’s fantastic wines to create a truly multi-sensory dining experience, where ‘each dish and wine offering reveals each other’s nuanced flavours and sensory complexity. The nuanced, layered notes of J Wines are highlighted and accented by the complex flavours of each dish’. The Bubble Room menu changes every 6 weeks, so returning foodies and wine lovers are guaranteed a new incredible experience on every visit!

j vineyards visit

If you’re simply excited to taste some of J Vineyards’ finest, there are a fantastic range of wine tasting experiences to choose from. The J Legacy Tasting is available 7 days a week by appointment and features tastings of some of the estate’s small-production and reserve wines which represent the pinnacle of winemaker Nicole’s talent. Also included is an artisan cheese pairing designed specifically to complement each wine, from sparkling to still varietal wines. If you’d like to take things at your own pace, opt for a J Signature Tasting , which allows visitors to taste through a signature flight of 5 sparkling and varietal wines at their leisure in the charming surroundings of the J Vineyards Visitor’s Centre. Winery and vineyard tours are also available on a daily basis, offering a fascinating 90-minute session which allows visitors to immerse themselves in winery life behind the scenes and discover the secrets of the winemaking process!

J Vineyards & Winery represents the very best that Californian winemaking in the Russian River Valley has to offer, with their exceptional range of wines and a great range of visitor experiences making this an unmissable stop on any wine tour of California. Visit for more information or contact Winerist today to discuss your Californian adventure!

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J Vineyards & Winery

Since 1986, J Vineyards & Winery has developed a reputation as one of the top sparkling and varietal wine producers in California. Known for its celebrated estate vineyards and world-class hospitality, what truly sets J apart is its Traditional Method sparkling process and elevated winemaking techniques. Winemaker Nicole Hitchcock showcases her expertise and the diversity of California winegrowing regions through a portfolio of acclaimed varietal and sparkling wines. Visit the renowned hospitality center in the heart of the Russian River Valley to enjoy one of the many tasting experiences or the innovative pairings created by Executive Chef Carl Shelton in the Bubble Room.

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26 Top Sonoma Wineries to Visit

Sip world-class wines while enjoying vineyard and mountain views.

Sonoma wineries

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Plan your next getaway to Sonoma County's beautiful wine country.

Northern California's Sonoma County is a dream destination for wine and food lovers. The area's diverse geography and multitude of microclimates provide an optimal environment for producing world-class, terroir-driven wines and bountiful local foods. Sonoma is home to more than 425 wineries and nearly 60,000 acres of vineyards that span 19 American Viticultural Areas from the Pacific Coast to the Mayacamas Mountains. In addition to wine tastings, many of these top Sonoma wineries host special events like dinners and live music performances. Read on to learn more about the delicious wines and inviting atmospheres offered in Sonoma's wine country.

[See more of Sonoma:  Things to Do  |  Hotels  |  When to Visit  |  Photos  ]

Francis Ford Coppola Winery: Geyserville

Sonoma wineries

Chad Keig | Courtesy of Francis Ford Coppola Winery

Francis Ford and Eleanor Coppola purchased this 28-acre property in Alexander Valley in 2006. Inspired by Copenhagen's Tivoli Gardens, filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola wanted to create a family-friendly, resort-like winery where guests could "celebrate the love of life." Accordingly, this property has something for everyone, including two swimming pools with private "cabines" (cabanas), a poolside cafe and dining with a view at Rustic. The property also boasts a gallery filled with movie memorabilia from Coppola's feature films, bocce ball courts, and other activities and amenities. As for the wine, reservations are highly recommended if you want to enjoy a 45-minute seated tasting flight on the terrace, while the 30-minute tasting on the main floor operates on a more casual first-come, first-serve basis.

Address: 300 Via Archimedes, Geyserville, CA 95441

Jordan Vineyard & Winery: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Matt Armendariz | Courtesy of Jordan Vineyard & Winery

The inspiration for Jordan Vineyard & Winery, founded in 1972 by Tom and Sally Jordan, came from France's food and wine culture. This stunning 1,200-acre property is set among the vineyards and rolling hills of the Alexander Valley. The winery chateau houses the winemaking operation, wine cellars, kitchen and other facilities; it's also one of the venues where you can sample the vineyard's notable cabernets and chardonnays. Tasting experiences include a winery walking tour with a seated wine and food pairing in the new French-inspired cellar room. A guided vineyard tasting includes two vintages of Russian River chardonnay and two vintages of Alexander Valley cabernet sauvignon paired with a selection of artisanal salumi and cheeses chosen by the winemaker – amid panoramic vineyard views. The wines you'll sample on a three-hour estate tour are accompanied by food pairings and an olive oil tasting, along with a light lunch. Keep in mind that reservations are required for all tastings.

Address: 1474 Alexander Valley Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Patz & Hall: Sonoma

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Patz & Hall

Patz & Hall was founded in 1988 by a group of four friends with knowledge of and passion for winemaking. One of the founders, James Hall, has been at the helm of the winemaking program since its inception. The Sonoma House at Patz & Hall offers a picturesque setting to sample and appreciate its wines amid the vineyard and mountain views – as long as you have a reservation – while sipping a notable chardonnay or pinot noir. Select the casual Sonoma House tasting to try four single-vineyard wines as an introduction to the vineyard. The Sparkling & Still Flight tasting option includes its specialty wines – pinot noir and chardonnay – in both sparkling and single-vineyard vintages.

Address: 21200 8th Street E., Sonoma, CA 95476

Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens: Fulton

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens

Kendall-Jackson is picturesquely situated in the heart of Sonoma County, surrounded by gardens and vineyards. The culinary gardens at the estate cover about 4 acres, producing rare, organic and sustainable vegetables, and microgreens for the estate – and for San Francisco's best chefs. The Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate also has a truffle orchard that produced the winery's first harvest of Périgord black truffles in 2017. Travelers can make a reservation to experience either the estate wine tasting or the wine and food pairing, which comes with seasonal ingredients sourced fresh from the on-site garden to complement limited-release wines. From spring through fall the winery also hosts a garden tour and tasting option that lets you sample the wines alongside harvested produce, as well as a farm-to-table dinner series.

Address: 5007 Fulton Road, Fulton, CA 95439

Martinelli Winery: Windsor

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Martinelli Winery

The Martinelli family has been growing grapes and making wine in the Russian River Valley for more than 135 years, beginning with the arrival of Giuseppe Martinelli from Italy in the 1880s. This family operation, which farms and produces small-batch chardonnay, syrah, pinot noir and zinfandel, is best known for the latter two wines. Martinelli Winery offers several tasting experiences, with reservations strongly encouraged but not always required if space permits. Splurge on The Collector's Flight to sample exclusive and highly rated wines, or check out the Heritage Tasting, which is hosted in the historic Baler Bar and features a flight of the winery's single-vineyard chardonnay, pinot noir, and syrah or zinfandel. You may also enjoy a private estate walking tour that includes a tasting, or the seasonal Vineyard Terrace Tasting offered April to October.

Address: 3360 River Road, Windsor, CA 95492

Cline Family Cellars: Sonoma

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Cline Cellars

Cline Family Cellars is a family-owned and -operated sustainable winery. Fred Cline began making wine in 1982 at a small ranch in Oakley, California, and then purchased a 350-acre horse farm in the Carneros region of Sonoma Valley in 1989. The first vintages were from original plantings of ancient vines of mourvedre, zinfandel and carignane grapes. Other varietals now include syrah and viognier, as well as pinot noir, merlot, chardonnay and grenache. Reservations are recommended for the Sonoma Heartland Tasting, which includes a flight of Sonoma AVA-focused wines. For a real treat, rent a private garden cabana that comes with a provision basket and a bottle of wine: This two-hour bottle service experience with beautiful views of the Great Lawn requires a reservation and a minimum of four guests.

Address: 24737 Arnold Drive, Sonoma, CA 95476

Dry Creek Vineyard: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Dry Creek Vineyard

Dry Creek Vineyard was established by David Stare in 1972. The winery considers itself one of the few remaining truly private, family-owned operations of its kind in Sonoma County; its 185-acres of land are certified sustainable and its wines are consistently highly rated. As the founder of the first new winery in Dry Creek Valley following Prohibition, Stare was the first winemaker to plant sauvignon blanc in the valley – and the first to produce a fume blanc in Sonoma County. He also initiated the process for Dry Creek Valley to become a wine appellation in 1983. Visitors to Dry Creek Vineyard can enjoy intimate seated tastings with a reservation. The approximately 1.5-hour visit includes learning about the family's history and winemaking philosophy while tasting single-vineyard and limited-production wines.

Address: 3770 Lambert Bridge Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Mauritson Wines: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Mauritson Wines

Mauritson Wines is famed for its zinfandel and cabernet sauvignon. The family of sheep ranchers and grape growers has been located in Dry Creek Valley since 1868; S.P. Hallengren, the great-great-great-grandfather of Mauritson Wines founder Clay Mauritson, planted his first vines in Sonoma County's Rockpile region in 1884. To accompany the family's long history of growing grapes, Clay Mauritson sought to add winemaking to the farming operation in the 1990s, debuting the winery's inaugural zinfandel in 1998. Today, signature flight tastings are available to visitors by reservation. The experience includes a tasting of the new releases along with insight into the wines and history of Mauritson's six-generation journey in the winemaking industry.

Address: 2859 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Keller Estate: Petaluma

Sonoma wineries

Michael Ryan | Courtesy of Keller Estate

The Keller family began producing organically farmed estate wines 30 years ago at this picturesque locale in the Petaluma Gap region. The goal was to produce extraordinary, handcrafted wines that would express the unique soil, climate and topography of their property. Keller Estate is recognized for its limited production of pinot noirs and chardonnays, but visitors should also be sure to try the brut rose sparkling and Rôtie syrah blend wines. The winery offers an estate visit and tour by reservation only for a taste of five flagship wines (chardonnays, pinot noirs and syrah) and of Keller Estate olive oil. The property is pet- and family-friendly but does not allow picnicking.

Address: 5875 Lakeville Highway, Petaluma, CA 94954

Laurel Glen Vineyard: Glen Ellen

Laurel Glen's organic vineyards sit on the hillsides of Sonoma Mountain in the Sonoma Mountain area, one of the smallest AVAs with just 667 vineyard acres. The winery specializes in cabernet sauvignon but also makes a small-batch rose and sauvignon blanc. Two tastings are available by reservation in the Glen Ellen tasting room. The sampling of four current releases begins with either the Blanc Slate sauvignon blanc or Rosella rose, followed by three distinctive cabernet sauvignons from Sonoma Mountain. Visitors can also taste rare vintages of Laurel Glen Vineyard's cabernet sauvignons (spanning at least a decade) from the wine library in a separate tasting.

Address: 13750 Arnold Drive, Glen Ellen, CA 95442

Ledson Winery & Vineyards: Kenwood

Sonoma wineries

Steve Ledson began construction on a house and a vineyard on this beautiful 21-acre Sonoma property in 1989. Ten years later, the 16,000-square-foot Gothic and French Normandy-style "castle" opened as Ledson Winery, surrounded by a 17-acre estate vineyard. The family also owns several other vineyards and produces more than 70 wines. Whether you opt for the Castle Selection tasting in one of three bar venues or the seated Vineyard Selection option, you'll enjoy handcrafted wines and recommendations from staff. Private wine tastings are held in individual suites and feature six top-rated wines. All tastings require advance reservations.

Address: 7335 state Route 12, Kenwood, CA 95409

Michel-Schlumberger Wine Estate: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Michel-Schlumberger Benchland Estate

In 1979, Switzerland-born Jean-Jacques Michel planted the original vines at what is now the 100-acre Michel-Schlumberger Wine Estate. Situated less than 20 miles from the Pacific Ocean, the property spans more than 88 acres of benchland vineyards: strips of level land with steep slopes above and below the vineyards. The winery produces more than 15 varietals, including its signature cabernet sauvignon, syrah, merlot and chardonnay. The Spanish mission-style property, located in Dry Creek Valley, is open for seated estate tastings by reservation only. You'll have the chance to sample four limited-production wines in the tasting salon for about 90 minutes.

Address: 4155 Wine Creek Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

MacRostie Winery & Vineyards: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Kathryn MacDonald | Courtesy of MacRostie Winery & Vineyards

MacRostie Winery & Vineyards was founded by Steve MacRostie in 1987. With winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen, MacRostie produces chardonnay and pinot noir made from grapes sourced from 21 chardonnay vineyards and more than 17 pinot noir sites. These include MacRostie's Thale's Estate Vineyard in the Russian River Valley and the new 74-acre Nightwing Estate Vineyard in the acclaimed Petaluma Gap region. While the MacRostie Estate House is situated in Sonoma County's Russian River Valley, the winery's vineyard program has sites in Green Valley, Carneros, Fort Ross-Seaview, Redwood Valley, Anderson Valley, Santa Maria Valley and Petaluma Gap. Guests can book a seated tasting experience with vineyard and valley views at the estate house (by reservation) that includes information on their vineyards and winemaking process. The experience also features five wines highlighting the single-vineyard chardonnays and pinot noirs from the Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast.

Address: 4605 Westside Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Iron Horse Vineyards: Sebastopol

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Iron Horse Vineyards

Iron Horse Vineyards is a small, family-owned estate winery located in Green Valley, part of the Russian River Valley. Audrey and Barry Sterling fell in love with the picturesque setting in 1976 and purchased the 300 acres two weeks later. The winery is known for its sparkling wines – a favorite at the White House for the last six presidential administrations – and particularly its chardonnay and pinot noir. Guests can sample these wines at Iron Horse's outdoor "tasting room," which features panoramic views across Sonoma County with Mount Saint Helena in the distance. All winery visits and tastings are by appointment only.

Address: 9786 Ross Station Road, Sebastopol, CA 95472

Rodney Strong Vineyards: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Rodney Strong Vineyards

Rodney Strong, an American dancer, decided to pursue his dream of winemaking when he purchased a 160-acre vineyard in Windsor in 1961. He was the first winemaker to produce a single-vineyard Alexander Valley cabernet sauvignon. The current owners, the Klein family, bought the winery in 1989 with the goal of using sustainable farming and winemaking practices to produce premium wines. Rodney Strong has 11 estate vineyards across four AVAs: seven in Alexander Valley, two in Chalk Hill, one in the Russian River Valley and one in Northern Sonoma County. The tasting room offers indoor and seasonal outdoor wine tastings by appointment; patrons can sample a handcrafted flight such as the Rodney Strong Flight, which features five wines. You'll have the option to add on certain food pairings, including a cheese and charcuterie box, when you make your reservation. The winery also hosts special events, including a summer concert series that features acts like Blues Traveler.

Address: 11455 Old Redwood Highway, Healdsburg, CA 95448

J Vineyards & Winery: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of J Vineyards & Winery

J Vineyards & Winery is located in Sonoma's Russian River Valley and boasts three distinct venues where wine aficionados can experience both estate wines and culinary offerings. The J Bubble Room offers an inventive Sonoma-inspired five-course wine and food pairing menu. Legacy Lounge tastings highlight small-production wines with an optional artisan cheese pairing. The Signature Bar Tasting features five sparkling and varietal wines from the Russian River Valley. J Vineyards also hosts events such as "Shifting the Lens," a limited culinary series that offers special dinners and wine pairings with guest chefs in summer 2022. All of the tastings, pairings and events require a reservation.

Address: 11447 Old Redwood Highway, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery

Don and Rhonda Carano acquired land in the Alexander Valley AVA and founded Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery in 1981. The winery's first wines were released six years later – a 1985 Alexander Valley chardonnay and 1986 fume blanc. The 24 certified sustainable vineyards now produce more than 20 white, red and dessert wines. Travelers will want to set aside several hours for visiting this beautiful Tuscan-inspired property. Visitors can wander through the 5 acres of gardens that surround Villa Fiore, the hospitality center, then enjoy a reserve wine tasting in the Enoteca (the "wine library") in the cellar of Villa Fiore: This flight of five limited-release and reserve wines requires a reservation. Ferrari-Carano Vineyards also offers a classic tasting indoors or outside by appointment. For a special celebration, reserve a spot for La Colazione Italiana, a Sunday brunch and wine experience. The Italian-style menu features a selection of brunch favorites prepared with seasonal ingredients from the estate gardens, a sweet ending to the meal and a flight of reserve wines.

Address: 8761 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Arrowood Vineyards & Winery: Glen Ellen

Arrowood has been producing Bordeaux-inspired Sonoma County cabernet sauvignon from organic and sustainable vineyards since 1986. Founder Richard Arrowood would search for the most distinctive and terroir-driven vineyards across Sonoma to create his wines – and that tradition continues today. The winery also produces a red blend, Knights Valley malbec, Carneros chardonnay, Saralee's Vineyard viognier and Alexander Valley sauvignon blanc. The winery is open daily and offers tastings by appointment. The Portfolio Tasting introduces guests to a sampling of Arrowood's red and white wines, while the Reserve Tasting showcases its single-vineyard and reserve wines. Visitors are allowed to bring a picnic lunch to the property's Winemaker Veranda, where you can soak in views of the vineyards and estate; call ahead to reserve a table.

Address: 14347 state Route 12, Glen Ellen, CA 95442

Ridge Vineyards: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Ridge Vineyards

Ridge Vineyards is known primarily for its red wines – particularly its cabernet sauvignon and zinfandel – but also produces a small amount of chardonnay. Its Lytton Springs Winery in Dry Creek Valley is surrounded by 115-year-old ancient vines. This sustainable winery is unique in that the building is made of vineyard clay and bales of straw and largely solar-powered. The seated estate tasting at Lytton Springs offers a sampling of five single-vineyard wines with an incredible view of the property. The Century Tour & Library Tasting takes guests around the vineyards while you learn about the history of the estate; current release and older vintage wines are served in a seated tasting at the conclusion of the visit. A seated private tasting of Ridge's renowned Monte Bello cabernet sauvignon features other wines from its Monte Bello vineyard. An optional charcuterie, cheese and olive board can be purchased to pair with some tastings, all of which require reservations.

Address: 650 Lytton Springs Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Chalk Hill Estate: Healdsburg

Sonoma wineries

Courtesy of Chalk Hill Estate

This beautiful 1,300-acre property was first seen from the air as founder Fred Furth flew his plane over the Russian River in 1972. After viewing the land more closely, he knew the terrain and climate were ideal for growing world-class wine grapes. Chalk Hill Estate is now home to 300 acres of vineyards and a winery, in addition to a hospitality center, a culinary garden, stables, an equestrian center and wilderness areas. Chalk Hill Estate offers guests a Vineyard Overlook Experience with scenic tastings of estate wines by appointment. Visitors can also book a guided tour of the estate in a Hummer, which also includes a walk through its culinary gardens and ends with a wine and food pairing.

Address: 10300 Chalk Hill Road, Healdsburg, CA 95448

Fort Ross Vineyard & Winery: Jenner

Perched atop a coastal ridge along the rugged Sonoma Coast and overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the 55 vineyard acres in the Fort Ross-Seaview AVA sit at about 920 to 1800 feet above sea level in what is called a distinct "coastal cool" wine-growing area. The winery owners, Lester and Linda Schwartz, purchased the stunning 976 coastal acres in 1988, only farming the grasslands, leaving the pristine forests and meadows untouched. This area is set apart from other Sonoma Coast AVAs by its elevation and proximity to the ocean, creating an optimal environment for farming pinot noir and chardonnay vineyards. Visitors who make an appointment can take the picturesque coastal drive to the winery to sample four of its estate wines paired with small bites prepared with locally sourced ingredients.

Address: 15725 Meyers Grade Road, Jenner, CA 95450

Buena Vista Winery: Sonoma

Looking through Buena Vista Caves.

Scott Chebegia | Courtesy of Buena Vista Winery

Founded in 1857 in Sonoma by Hungarian farmer, vintner and business owner Agoston Haraszthy, Buena Vista considers itself California's first premium winery. Haraszthy, the self-proclaimed "Count of Buena Vista," is regarded as one of California's best-known and most flamboyant viticulturalists. Today, the original winery – set in the Mayacamas Mountains in Sonoma Valley – is a California Historic Landmark. You can visit this beautiful property, now owned by winemaker Jean-Charles Boisset, to tour the winery and sample vintages in the original tasting room. There are several experiences available to reserve at Buena Vista. Take a step back in time while sipping Champagne and sparkling wines at the Bubble Lounge, or opt for the barrel tasting and tour, which includes a walk through the property's grounds, a visit to the renovated Champagne Cellar, a flight of current-release wines and a sampling of wine from a barrel. For a real treat, splurge on the seated Grand Reserve Tasting.

Address: 18000 Old Winery Road, Sonoma, CA 95476

Ram's Gate Winery: Sonoma

The Tasting Room Bar at Ram's Gate Winery.

Courtesy of Ram's Gate Winery

Founded in 2011, this 28-acre estate sits on a hill at the convergence of Napa and Sonoma counties and San Francisco Bay. The property is also located across three AVAs: Sonoma Coast, Carneros and Sonoma Valley. Guests can visit the picturesque winery and enjoy views of the organic vineyards while sampling estate varietals like pinot noir and chardonnay, in addition to the wines produced from other vineyards. Ram's Gate Winery's tasting experiences include a casual flight of four wines at the tasting bar, which requires a minimum of two guests. For a more immersive experience, a seasonal wine and food pairing provides more information about the farming and winemaking techniques at the estate. Caviar and Champagne aficionados will want to reserve a spot for the winery's Caviar Experience: This tasting allows you to select either the reserve or golden caviar, complemented by Ram's Gate's traditional sparkling wine and two still wines.

Address: 28700 Arnold Drive, Sonoma, CA 95476

Hamel Family Wines: Sonoma

Exterior of vineyard and building at Hamel Family Wines.

Courtesy of Hamel Family Wines

The Hamel family's wine adventure began with Pam and George Hamel Jr.'s 2006 purchase of a home in Kenwood in Sonoma Valley with an acre of cabernet sauvignon vines. Now the Hamels make limited-production cabernet sauvignon, cabernet blends and other varietals at their beautiful 124-acre property, estate house and winery about 5 miles north of Sonoma Town Square. The four estate vineyards, located in the Sonoma Valley and Moon Mountains District AVAs, are certified biodynamic and organic. To immerse yourself in the family's winemaking practices, book the Estate Experience for a private tour of the vineyard, winery and wine cave. Afterward, guests will engage in a seated tasting of four estate series wines and a light snack with views of Sonoma Mountain and the valley. The Reserve Experience includes a multicourse food and wine pairing. Hamel Family Wines also offers a Collectors' Experience, which combines an informative tour with a private tasting in the cave of several reserve wines and a culinary accompaniment from the chef. These options all require an appointment.

Address: 15401 state Route 12, Sonoma, CA 95476

Matanzas Creek Winery: Santa Rosa

Nestled in the quiet – and beautiful – Bennett Valley AVA of Sonoma County, Matanzas Creek is known primarily for its sauvignon blanc and merlot. The winery, launched in 1977, farms sustainable estate vineyards that also produce small lots of Bordeaux-style red wines, pinot noir and chardonnay. For a casual visit, the winery offers picnic tables and bocce ball court rentals and bottle service with a reservation. The Matanzas Creek Comparative Tasting, another option by reservation, gives you time to explore the stunning lavender fields, vineyards and gardens, followed by a tasting of five wines. You can also reserve the Collectors Tasting to try six wines and compare current releases to the library vintages.

Address: 6097 Bennett Valley Road, Santa Rosa, CA 95404

Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards: Sonoma

José Ferrer moved with his wife, Gloria, from Barcelona to Sonoma, California, in the 1980s, bringing his family's expertise in Spanish sparkling wine to the region. In 1984, the Ferrers planted the initial 50 acres of pinot noir and chardonnay vines in Carneros, opening the winery two years later. Carneros straddles Sonoma and Napa, and the impact of the maritime effects of San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean creates the environment for a long growing season – and the optimal terroir to produce sparkling wines. Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards in 2016 was certified as sustainable. The estate comprises a total of 335 acres spanning two ranches, and guests can visit the winery and sample its sparkling wines with a selection of reservable tours and tastings. The classic experience takes place outdoors in the vista pavilion and includes four wines, with optional food add-ons available for purchase. To learn about the history, sustainability and winemaking methods, Gloria Ferrer's agricultural tour lets guests explore the vineyards by club car and enjoy a five-course food and wine pairing on the terrace.

Address: 23555 Arnold Drive, Sonoma, CA 95476

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2021 J Vineyards & Winery Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

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Community tasting notes ( 5 ) avg score: 88.4 points.

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5/11/2024 - Salute Likes this wine: 92 Points

Wow. This was a great pinot. Everything you'd expect from a Russian River pinot, with depth and a bit longer finish. Really good.

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4/30/2024 - ssouth Likes this wine: 91 Points

2021 J Vineyards Russian River Valley Pinot Noir. Alc 14.5% Expressive nose of bing cherry Palate follows with darker cherry and a hint of mocha with a drying finish. Impressive “ weight” and depth of flavors

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9/23/2023 - tomoem wrote: 89 Points

Like prior years I get cedar wood aromaticallly. This year adds some cherry and mushroom on the nose. I get some cherry, raspberry and mulberry sweet fruit on the palette. Finishes with cranberry and raspberry and quite a bit of sweetness. Nothing special.

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4/30/2023 - pvewino wrote: 88 Points

Perfectly adequate wine. However, it is somewhat thin in flavor profile as opposed to body. There simply isn't the dimension in this wine that I typically look for. Knowing Pinot Noirs can be challenging, this is a average one. Certainly nothing special. For the price point, there are much better ones to select.

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3/11/2023 - J.frem wrote:

A little tart

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  • Vintage 2021
  • Producer J Vineyards & Winery
  • Variety Pinot Noir
  • Designation n/a
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  • Country USA
  • Region California
  • SubRegion Sonoma County
  • Appellation Russian River Valley
  • Display options Variety and Appellation
  • UPC/EAN Code 091882931308 , 724624115017

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j vineyards visit

5 Daycation Spots Outside of Toronto You Need to Visit This Summer

Did somebody say daycation?

The summer season is among us and there is no better time like the present to dust off your sun hats, lather on some sunscreen and take a day trip to one of these beautiful daycation spots outside of Toronto. While there are endless summer activities in the city to keep us occupied from the heat, work, and general stress of life, it’s always a treat to venture out from the bustling city and truly unwind.

If you’re thinking about getting out of the city this long weekend (or anytime this summer, really) look no further. From gorgeous lavender farms to quant wineries, these are our favourite daycation spots just outside of Toronto.

Avalon Lavender Farm

Located an hour-and-a-half out of the city in Mono, Ontario, Avalon Lavender Farm is home to luscious lavender fields, friendly farm animals, beautiful picnic spots and endless photo-ops. It’s the perfect place to spend the day surrounded by nature.

And running from June 22nd to August 10th, Avalon has partnered with Toronto restaurant PIANO PIANO to develop a family-friendly, High-Tea Lavender Garden experience. For $99 per person, you can enjoy a high-tea picnic in the lavender fields including decadent bites like rosemary and parmigiano and lemon ricotta scones, smoked salmon bagels, burrata al campagnolo, lavender panna cotta, and of course, lavender iced tea.

To make life a little bit easier, Avalon has partnered with Balzac’s Coffee to provide visitors with a bus service operating out of Balzac’s location in Liberty Village to take guests to and from the lavender farm. This bus service runs every Saturday at 11 am, and brings you back to Toronto by 4pm. The bus and field access is priced at $62, while the bus ride plus high-tea experience totals $147.

Kew Vineyards

Located in Beamsville, Ontario and sitting on 80 acres of beautiful Canadian soil, Kew Vineyards brings the European country side to Niagara, offering a stylish and intimate country experience only an hour away from the city.

Since its inception in 1975, this spot has been dedicated to cultivating high-quality grapes with a special focus on terroir-driven wine. The vineyard boasts some of the region’s oldest vineyards, originally planted in 1975 with vines imported from Europe. Be sure to enjoy a walk-in wine tasting while you’re taking in the vistas and grab a bottle (or two!) for your home collection.

Sauble Beach

Nothing says summer like a day at the beach. Grab your swimsuits, towels and your besties and head over to Sauble Beach. Situated about 3 hours away from Toronto, Sauble is ranked Canada’s #1 freshwater beach—and for good reason. In addition to the stunning beach, boardwalk and surrounding town area, this Bruce Peninsula town has so much to explore, including golf courses, arial parks, restaurants, thrift stores and outdoor concerts.

And if you want to extend your daycation by a few days, be sure to pop in to the ’70s-inspired June Motel , or consider the many beach house and cottage rentals available.

Scandinave Spa

Blue Mountain is brings a piece of Scandinavia to you year-round thanks to Scandinave Spa , a true haven for wellness lovers. This ultra-tranquil, device-free outdoor spa offers traditional Nordic spa circuits including steam rooms, saunas and cold plunges, along with soothing massages, all while surrounded by a gorgeous forested area.

For a true reset, opt for the “thermal journey” cold plunge and sauna experience, which is purported to improve sleep quality, physical performance and even remove toxins from the body. For something a little more laid back, the spa’s massage services include traditional Swedish, therapeutic, relaxation and prenatal massages. Scandinave Spa also offers duo massages, where two guests can experience a massage together in the same room.

Downey’s Strawberry and Apple Farm

Nothing beats the heat like something sweet. Spend the day at Downey’s Strawberry and Apple Farm in Caledon, located an hour-and-a-half from Toronto. With daily wagon rides around the farm, this spot is family-friendly and perfect for snapping pictures. For $14 for a 2 litre basket, you can pick the freshest and sweetest strawberries from the fields. Fresh sorbet, anyone?

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The post 5 Daycation Spots Outside of Toronto You Need to Visit This Summer appeared first on Elle Canada .


2022 Russian River Valley Chardonnay

2022 Russian River Valley Chardonnay

Our smooth and inviting Russian River Valley Chardonnay showcases the best of this classic cool-climate region. Appealing aromas of florals and citrus open at first pour, while the layered, flavorful palate adds notes of white peach, pear, pineapple and fresh-cut Meyer lemon. Subtle accents of toasted hazelnut, vanilla and gingersnap add rich complexity and depth, a hallmark of the wine’s French oak aging.


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  1. J Vineyards & Winery

    Since joining J in 2015, Winemaker Nicole Hitchcock's high-scoring and critically acclaimed wines have exemplified her passion, knowledge and expertise and won her fans from around the world. In 2022, she was awarded the Winemaker of the Year Wine Star Award by Wine Enthusiast. Experience the wines that put her on top during your next visit.

  2. Wine Tasting in Healdsburg

    Welcome to J Winery, the ultimate destination for Healdsburg wine tasting in the beautiful Russian River Valley. Come taste our small-lot Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Sparkling wines. ... the senses during your next visit. KNOW BEFORE YOU GO. Location: 11447 Old Redwood Highway, Healdsburg, CA 95448. Phone: (707) 431-5430. Hours of Operation: 11: ...

  3. J Vineyards & Winery

    233 reviews. #28 of 198 things to do in Healdsburg. Wineries & Vineyards. Closed now. 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Write a review. About. Renowned for our inspiring wine tasting experience, we encourage you to join us at the sleek J Visitor Center to experience our Russian River Valley wines. Taste a range of sparkling and varietal selections - from ...

  4. Legacy Tasting

    Our Legacy Lounge tasting is perfect for an extended introduction to the wines and culinary expertise found at J Vineyards & Winery. J Legacy Lounge Tasting is available 7 days a week by appointment. Please allow one hour for your tasting. Seatings every half-hour from 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Groups up to 6 guests. $50 per person/Special Pricing ...

  5. J Vineyards & Winery

    707-431-5430 [email protected]. Visit Website. Book Now. Save to My Trip. 11447 Old Redwood Highway. Healdsburg, CA 95448. Get Directions. Description Amenities. For over 30 years, J Vineyards & Winery has elevated the standard for California sparkling and varietal winemakers.

  6. J Vineyards & Winery

    Location. J Vineyards & Winery. 11447 Old Redwood Highway, , Healdsburg CA 95448. (707) 431-3646 | (888) 594-6326 (toll free) Visit Website. [email protected]. +. The elegant J Bubble Room's seated, five-course experience showcases the innovative, local, and seasonally-inspired food of Executive Chef Carl Shelton paired with J's acclaimed wines.

  7. 4 Reasons to Visit J Vineyards This Summer

    J Vineyards & Winery, located just south of Healdsburg in the Russian River Valley, is well worth a visit any time of year, but there's just something extra magical during the summer months when the weather is at its finest, the grapes are growing in the estate vineyards, and the patio is bustling with satisfied guests.

  8. Events

    VISIT J VINEYARDS & WINERY EVENTS. Join us for dinners in our estate vineyards, Club J exclusive events or seasonal soirees, check out our upcoming events and reserve tickets to J's once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Call 707.431.5430 or email [email protected] for reservations.

  9. Inside … J Vineyards & Winery

    J Vineyards & Winery. 04 Nov, 2020. J Vineyards & Winery produce a range of exceptional sparkling and varietal wines in Russian River Valley AVA, which sits at the heart of Californian wine country. Winerist spent some time discovering what makes J Vineyards so special. J Vineyards & Winery occupies a prime position in the heart of California ...

  10. J Vineyards & Winery

    J Vineyards & Winery is a California winery located in the Russian River Valley AVA of Sonoma County, California, owned and operated by E & J Gallo since 2015. Categories: Wineries in Sonoma County, California. Healdsburg, California. American companies established in 1986. 1986 establishments in California. Food and drink companies established ...

  11. Sonoma's Premier Food & Wine Experience

    Using the very best local ingredients and innovative cooking techniques, the J culinary team has created a five-course pairing menu that tells the story of the relationship between the land and our award-winning varietal and sparkling wines. Tasting Duration: 2 hours. Price: $175 per guest | $150 for Club J Members. Make a Reservation.

  12. J Vineyards & Winery

    Since 1986, J Vineyards & Winery has developed a reputation as one of the top sparkling and varietal wine producers in California. Known for its celebrated estate vineyards and world-class hospitality, what truly sets J apart is its Traditional Method sparkling process and elevated winemaking techniques. Winemaker Nicole Hitchcock showcases her expertise and the diversity of California ...

  13. J Vineyards & Winery

    233 reviews. #28 of 198 things to do in Healdsburg. Wineries & Vineyards. Closed now. 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Write a review. About. Renowned for our inspiring wine tasting experience, we encourage you to join us at the sleek J Visitor Center to experience our Russian River Valley wines. Taste a range of sparkling and varietal selections - from ...

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    J Vineyards. Sonoma County , United States. Average Rating. 4.0. (39195 Ratings) Wines. 50. Founded by Judy Jordan in 1986, J Vineyards & Winery began as a producer of critically-acclaimed sparkling wines like their J Vintage Brut, J Late-Disgorged Vintage Brut, Brut Rosé, and Cuvée 20 Brut. However, Judy, always curious and innovating, came ...

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    Select the casual Sonoma House tasting to try four single-vineyard wines as an introduction to the vineyard. The Sparkling & Still Flight tasting option includes its specialty wines - pinot noir ...

  18. J Vineyards & Winery

    233 reviews. #28 of 198 things to do in Healdsburg. Wineries & Vineyards. Closed now. 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Write a review. About. Renowned for our inspiring wine tasting experience, we encourage you to join us at the sleek J Visitor Center to experience our Russian River Valley wines. Taste a range of sparkling and varietal selections - from ...

  19. Wine Varietals

    The Wines. For over 30 years, J Vineyards & Winery has elevated the standard for California sparkling and varietal winemakers. Situated in the vine-friendly Russian River Valley of Sonoma County, our vineyards offer the ideal climate for growing distinctive, world-class wines.

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    Average of 88.4 points in 9 community wine reviews on 2021 J Vineyards & Winery Pinot Noir Russian River Valley, plus professional notes, label images, wine details, and recommendations on when to drink.

  21. THE 10 BEST New Jersey Wineries & Vineyards to Visit (2024)

    We would definitely recommend this place if you like wines on the drier side. 4. Turdo Vineyards & Winery. 227. Wineries & Vineyards. By J3975WKcarlb. Sal, Sara and Lucca have become good friends and we look forward to our winery visits each year. 5. Renault Winery Resort.

  22. Monterey Sonoma Napa Counties Chardonnay

    VISIT J VINEYARDS & WINERY Explore a selection of our crafted small-lot Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Sparkling wines. Reservations are required. Please call 707.431-5430 to inquire about same-day availability.

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    Our smooth and inviting Russian River Valley Chardonnay showcases the best of this classic cool-climate region. Appealing aromas of florals and citrus open at first pour, while the layered, flavorful palate adds notes of white peach, pear, pineapple and fresh-cut Meyer lemon. Subtle accents of toasted hazelnut, vanilla and gingersnap add rich complexity and depth, a hallmark of the wine's ...