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Sonoma’s hidden gem was a little bit hard to find, but as we wound our way through the Dry Creek Valley, we had not a care in the world. Lambert Bridge was a recommendation from Erica, and it was an awesome one. I love getting winery recommendations from wine-loving friends; it’s the best way to plan your trip!

For some of my wine country experiences, please do visit my Travel Blog Posts page!

We visited Lambert Bridge on Labor Day, and it was the perfect start to a day of wine tasting. We left our little wine country home and headed to Dry Creek Valley, one of my favorite wine regions I have visited.

Dry Creek Valley

California was in a drought when we visited, so everything was dry. Aside from the water emergency, the landscape looked cool in its sun-baked state, with green grape vines taking up huge swaths of landscape. The earth and the vines and the harvest process, crush, all of that, filled the air and smelled so good.

Dry Creek Valley

Northern Sonoma Countywine country foliage

It took us a while to find Lambert Bridge as our GPS lost signal and we went the wrong way. We opened an old fashioned map and luckily didn’t give up. The journey was well worth it.

Lambert Bridge has a gorgeous winery tasting room, with lots of dark wood and stone. The tasting room reflects their wines, big, high quality, with a lot of attention to detail.

Lambert Bridge Winery

The tasting room staff was great; they were very informative about the wines, letting us know how winemaker Jennifer Higgins is incredibly hands on, spending lots of time with the grapes and on the land and doing a ton of the winemaking prep process by hand. Lambert Bridge makes small lots of wine that involves lots of hand-picking and sorting grapes berry-by-berry. There’s clearly a lot of love in the wines, and while that is also reflected in the cost, a few bottles for a special occasion are just the souvenir.

wine tasting at Lambert Bridge

We tasted a bit of this and that from each of the tasting options, starting off with the most refreshing 2013 Bevill Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, THE perfect wine for the hot dry Sonoma County day. With citrus and clover notes, this wine tasted like Northern California in a glass. Crisp acidity made it really enjoyable.

Zinfandel and Cab Franc were center stage in the tasting for us. Despite the heat, these reds were perfection.

2011 Sonoma County Cabernet Franc was a treat, with that characteristic Cab Franc spice, funk, and berry notes. Cab Franc is like a an autumn walk in the forest, smelling crunchy leaves and smoke from fireplaces, mixed with super ripe berries. It’s such an amazing grape, and I love tasting Cab Franc from coast to coast.

2011 Forchini Vineyard Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel was another favorite, big and bursting with jammy raspberry and blueberry notes, along with vanilla and spice, balanced, with a long and lovely finish. I love Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel, and this one is definitely top of the list.

Lambert Bridge Winery  Lambert Bridge has a lovely property, ideal for a wander or  a seat outside with a taste of wine. It is really a top-of-the-list winery, and if you will be in Northern Sonoma County, I recommend a visit.

Lambert Bridge

Will you be celebrating Wine Wednesday today?

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Tags: Dry Creek Valley, Healdsburg, Sonoma, Sonoma County, Travel, wine, wine blog, wine lover, wine tasting, wine travel, winery

Happy Travel Tuesday! We leave for Ireland in a month, and have a trip to New Jersey to visit family in between then and now so I am feeling good about feeding the wanderlust these days. We’re also still reminiscing about an amazing Sonoma holiday over Labor Day weekend, so today I thought I would share some out and about photos, places I didn’t necessarily photograph in-depth and pretty pictures I caught along our travels. Enjoy!

Napa roads

{Napa County Road and the bluest sky}

 

Hog Island Oyster Company

{Hog Island Oyster Co. – get ready for some shucking!}

Sonoma Coast

{The Magnificent Sonoma Coast}

Girl and the Fig, Sonoma

{Chocolate and Fig Salted Caramel Trifle at The Girl and the Fig}

Passaggio Tasting Room, Sonoma {Passaggio Wines new tasting room in Sonoma – I love Passaggio Wine but was not bright enough to check the tasting room hours and showed up on a closed day. From what I could see, it is beautiful.}

 

Russian River Valley sunset

{Russian River Valley sunset from our Flipkey Sonoma home}

Truett Hurst

{Sun-baked Dry Creek Valley land in August – I LOVE the heat.}

Truett Hurst

{Cooling off at Truett Hurst, one of my favorite Dry Creek Valley wineries}

Truett Hurst

{Truett Hurst Sauvignon Blanc, riverside}

Dry Creek General Store

{Dry Creek General Store – a favorite for a cold beer, Dry Creek Valley views, great sandwiches, and people-watching}

Holdredge Pinot Noir

{Gorgeous Pinot Noir, Grateful Dead memorabilia, and rap music at Holdredge – so.much.fun. Who says wine is snobby?}

Napa Valley Sunset

{Sunset as we left Napa Valley on our last evening}

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Tags: California, California wine country, Food, Napa, Napa Valley, Restaurants, Sonoma, Sonoma County, Travel, travel posts, Travel Tuesday, wine, wine blog, wine blogger, wine tasting, wine travel, winery

 

Rodney Strong wine

Our recent trip to Sonoma and Napa included the chance to plan get togethers and have some random run ins with some of the very friendly people we have met on past trips. Since it was Sonoma Wine Country Weekend and an early harvest, the county was buzzing with busy people, but one evening event brought lots of people out to Rodney Strong Vineyards for some of their great wine, an excellent selection of beers, and a band that I can now count in our favorites.

Rodney Strong Vineyards

While the light and heat of our day of canoeing on the Russian River faded, we caught up with old friends and met new ones while listening to the Big Bang, an incredibly talented group of musicians who I wish toured on the East Coast! Pliny the Elder

Rodney Strong wines are always favorites, but the selection of beers at the event was pretty phenomenal, and we had the opportunity to sip Pliny the Elder, a sought-after beer that many East Coast friends were excited to see on my Facebook and Instagram feeds.

peach salad

A simple, excellent dinner of fresh salads and wood-fired pizzas provided the perfect bites to go along with the beer and to prep us for dancing. With the Big Bang in the house, you couldn’t NOT dance.Rodney Strong Vineyards events

A break between music sets and chatting found us on the cool lawn behind the winery with more local beer, this time from Lagunitas, the sun setting  on the vineyards behind us, and lots of grateful silence and being in the perfect moment.

Sonoma sunset

The sun said its goodbyes most gracefully, meeting the dark and twinkling stars on their way in. Temperatures dropped, and we moved closer to the fire for a couple of last songs before we were on our way. What a beautiful way to spend a summer weekend night in wine country!

Thank you to Rodney Strong Vineyards for having us by. We can’t wait to visit again soon!

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Tags: beer, events, Sonoma, Sonoma County, Sonoma Wine Country Weekend, wine, wine country, wine tasting, winery

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