San Francisco Trip – Sightseeing in Wine Country

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country –

My wife is attending a meeting in San Francisco so we decided to take a few days and explore wine country as well as San Francisco. It is always nice making a work trip into am mini vacation.

The trip report is organized in the following posts:

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Introduction

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – United Club at MSP

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Delta Minneapolis to San Francisco

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Silvercar at SFO

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Hyatt Vineyard Creek Hotel

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Hotel Nikko San Francisco

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Sightseeing in Wine Country

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Sightseeing in San Francisco

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Using Uber Pool

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Delta San Francisco to Minneapolis

 

San Francisco and Wine Country Trip Report – Sightseeing in Wine Country

For this trip, my sightseeing narrative will be focused on our visit to Sonoma and Wine Country in Northern California.

We stayed in Santa Rosa for two nights at the Hyatt Vineyard Creek.

On Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the weekend we were in town, Wine Road was holding a Barrel Wine Tasting event which for $50 gave you access to wine tasting at up to 90 wineries in the Sonoma and Napa region of Northern California.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

We were only available on Friday and Saturday, but it still seemed like a fun thing to do as it featured some of the smaller wineries that we otherwise would not have visited.

Wine tastings are typically between $10-$20 per-person at most wineries. So we would break even if we visited five wineries. Over the two days we went to seven different wineries so the pass turned out to be a good deal.

The weather during that weekend included some much needed rain for the region.

Due to the rain, we did more wine tasting rather than sightseeing but still saw some great views as we drove in between the wineries as well as walked around at each of the vineyards.

The way the program worked, was you signed up for a host vineyard where you went on Friday to pick up your wrist band. When we arrived at that vineyard, someone checked our identification, provided a wrist band, and gave us each a wine glass. We were also provided a listing of all the vineyards that were participating as well as a map.

Once we made that first stop we were able to visit any of the other locations at our leisure.

For this trip we decided to stay near Santa Rosa and we visited many of the wineries in that area.

Prior to beginning we had a big breakfast at the Hyatt.

We used our Silvercar to get from one winery to the next.

In terms of the tasting, I simply took a small sip from the wines at each location while my wife was able to sample the wines fully. I enjoyed spending the day with her and exploring the different areas.

The festival was focused on tasting wines directly from barrels. The barrels were for wines that would be maturing later that year. The purpose was to try to get people to buy futures or to pre-pay for wines the following year which you were sampling that day.

It was an interesting process where someone uses a tool to get the wine out of the barrel and to place it in your cup.

Along the tour, we saw some great scenery.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

At the first winery, they did not have a barrel there; however, they had wine in a bottle that they took out of their barrels.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine CountrySan Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

At the other wineries, we were able to sample the wine directly out from the barrel.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

All of the wineries we visited were smaller vineyards except for one, which was Kendall Jackson.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

At that location, they did more formal tasting inside and they were only participating in the barrel tasting on Saturday.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

We bought one bottle of wine there so we could do a tasting for free.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

Our favorite winery from the tour was the Carol Shelton one which was located in a warehouse area rather than a vineyard.

That location featured a wild chardonnay wine which was excellent. In addition, the staff at that winery spent a great deal of time describing each wine and their process. In addition, after sampling from the barrel they offered a taste of the finished product from the previous year.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

We went to one other tasting that was actually held at a bar within Railroad Square. They brought in bottles of the barrels and they offered a Sparkling option as well.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

We enjoyed the tasting and we ended up buying a bottle or two at each one and we got a box to take it home on the plane so we could enjoy the wine later.

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

During the visit, we discovered some of the barrels were made from wood from Minnesota!

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

Overall it was a good trip exploring Sonoma!

San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country San Francisco Trip Sightseeing in Wine Country

Have you visited Sonoma? What is your favorite winery or vineyard?

 

 

 

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