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!
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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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
Will you be celebrating Wine Wednesday today?