Category: Winery

Rosenblum Cellars »

The Basics

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Cuisine: Winery
Ambiance: Jovial
Address: 250 Center Street, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Neighborhood: Sonoma
Phone: 707.431.1169
Web Site: https://www.rosenblumcellars.com
What to Wear: casual to dressy casual
Fave Points: location and the $5 shipping on 6 bottles of wine
My Occasion: catching up with a girlfriend
My Fave Wine: Désirée Chocolate Dessert Wine, California

Menu pricing and availability subject to change.

My Dish

After leaving Trentadue Winery, we headed over to Healdsburg, CA for a snack. It was about 4:30 pm and we’d had a late breakfast, but no other food…just lots of good wine. We got a couple recommendations for restaurants in Healdsburg by the peeps at Trenadue and decided on hitting up Ravenous where we heard they had a great burger. Unfortunately, we were a tad early and the restaurant didn’t open till 5!

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Although we were a bit hungry, we decided more wine sounded like a good idea still, plus my friend said most wineries closed after 5/6 pm-ish, so we hit up Rosemblum Cellars. Rosenblum’s Healdsburg tasting room was actually in the city of Healdsburg, so the place was packed! We had to wait to get a spot for tasting. A spot opened up but the people on either side of it spread out so we couldn’t fit. Luckily, the nice man behind the counter kindly asked the gentlemen to help us make our way to the tasting counter. How nice!

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The tasting room was super cute and there was wine everywhere!

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There was a cozy sitting area across from the tasting counter, but this area stayed pretty empty while we were there.

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Once we got a spot at the tasting counter, it was vino time! My friend and I each got the reserve wine samplings. I was most intrigued by the wine they said was for barbecues and grilling-out parties! Those wines really did taste like they’d go great with some nice, smoky summer-grilled foods! I didn’t get any bottles of these BBQ wines, but wish I did!

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More etched-glasses! I loved how each winery had their own etched tasting glasses.

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Seriously…wine everywhere!

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Love those pour spouts.

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Though this place was busy, we had a good time with our wine tasting. Oh, and do you see that decorative vase-looking-thing in the background?

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I’m talking about this thingy – the blue, green, and yellow vase. If you’re not familiar with wine tasting, you may not know what this is. This receptacle is where you pour the wines you don’t want to drink any more. I know…it sounds almost impossible to not want to finish your wine! But, if you’re up for a serious day of wine-visiting, you can easily visit 5+ wineries, so at some point, you may wish to not finish your entire tasting glass, especially if you’re driving! In that case, simply pour your wine into this vase. Done and done.

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Specials.

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Rosenblum has a stimulus plan, too.

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My friend and I wrapped up our wine tastings and even got to try some of their delicious dessert wines, including one that is flavored like chocolate!

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I probably would have only been able to get 1 bottle of wine, but due to luggage space, not budget. Like I said, I had budgeted for some vacay shopping. Lucky me, the winery offered $5 shipping to select spots if you purchased 6 bottles of wine or more. Now, I say I budgeted money, but I didn’t budget 6 bottles worth! As it worked out, my friend got 3 and I got 3, which they let qualify my order for the shipping…yay! The people at Rosenblum were so nice! I picked up 2 dessert wines and 1 white. There they are on the counter while our wine helper prepares my goodies for shipment.

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Friends at Rosenblum. :)

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Corks by the entrance/exit. Info on the wine club, too. Each of the wineries we visited had their own wine clubs, which I didn’t research, but seemed to get you free tastings and discounts on wine. If only I lived in Cali…I would be all about a wine club membership! In fact, my friend said she wants to retire in California wine country and now that I’ve seen what it has to offer…I want to retire there, too! It’s beautiful and so relaxing!

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After finishing our tasting at Rosenblum Cellars, we headed back to Ravenous for sustenance. More on dinner + dessert next time!

Final Dish

My friend and I really enjoyed our trip to Rosenblum Cellars. The place was packed, but we still got a lot of attention from the man helping us. The $5 shipping really saved me because I wouldn’t have been able to buy those extra bottles of wine if they didn’t ship them to me (all bottles arrived safe and sound a week-ish later). My suitcase was already packed! I also really liked the location of Rosenblum’s tasting room – right in the heart of Healdsburg, CA – a cute wine country town. There were tons of restaurants and shops nearby – all within walking distance. In fact, we ended up walking to the restaurant where we had dinner and we really enjoyed looking in all the little shop windows and what not. Definitely try the dessert wines if you go…I know I will next time! I’ll look for that BBQ wine, too!

Trentadue Winery (Wine Tasting) »

The Basics

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Cuisine: Winery
Ambiance: Friendly, Welcoming, + Chic
Address: 19170 Geyserville Ave, Geyserville, CA 95441
Neighborhood: Sonoma
Phone: 704.433.3104
Web Site: http://www.trentadue.com/
What to Wear: casual to dressy casual
Fave Points: friendly people, laid back atmosphere, free tastings
My Occasion: catching up with a girlfriend
My Fave Wine: 2006 Trentadue Sangiovese, Alexander Valley Estate

Menu pricing and availability subject to change.

My Dish

After leaving Bella Vineyards + Wine Caves , we headed over to the next stop on my friend’s winery list – Trentadue Winery . This was a winery my friend had never been to, but heard good things about. We lucked out that my friend happened to have a winery map complete with winery addresses, along with a GPS system so we could enter the addresses and get directions. The GPS was very handy to have on our little road trip to easily get from one winery to another.

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We passed the gate and drove down a red-leaved-tree-lined road towards the winery.

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The wine tasting area was very fru-fru-looking from the outside and very pretty. It’s no wonder they do so many weddings here! In fact, there was one wedding going on while we were there!

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I loved the fountain outside…especially the lions!

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This winery had more counter space for us, so we grabbed a nice corner spot. Trentadue Winery offered free wine tastings from the left side of the menu – any choice of (about) 8 wines! Free wine tastings are always nice. See the etched wine glasses again?

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My friend got the port tasting…

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…while I got the regular wine tasting flight.

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The glasses were totally different sizes! My friend’s glass was so cute and mini! I sampled a couple wines off the free list and all the ones on my tasting flight. I even got a couple sips of my friend’s port tastings. The wine tastings were all delicious. Additionally, I really liked the staff at Trentadue. They were very personable and energetic.

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Yay for wine tastings with good friends!

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The ladies next to us had the cutest dog! This is (I believe) a Mi-Ki. I hear it’s a new breed? I’ve certainly never heard of it before.

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They even showed us some of their dog’s tricks like how she could stand.

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So cute! I realize dogs have little to do with wine, but I think that this little story of the winery welcoming the dog adds to the personality of the place and shows how friendly they are.

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After our entertainment, we wrapped up our wine-tasting and discussed wine-purchase-options.

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I got 2 bottles! I purchased 2 reds:

I couldn’t decide between these 2 bottles of wine (both from the free list, surprisingly enough), and since they were reasonably priced, I figured it was ok to get both (especially since I had some spending money budgeted for the trip and wasn’t just charging up a storm). I can’t wait to enjoy them now that I’m home!
Anywho, after Trentadue Winery, we were off to Healdsburg, CA to get a snack, then more vino!
Final Dish

I think Trentadue Winery was my favorite winery of the trip. I felt very comfortable and relaxed during the tasting, and my friend and I were really able to kick back and have a great time between tasting wines and just catching up in general. Besides having great wine, wonderful customer service, and a welcoming environment, I had an overall feel-good-feeling after leaving this winery. I’d happily return to Trentadue next time I’m in the area.

Bella Vineyards + Wine Caves »

The Basics

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Cuisine: Winery
Ambiance: Inviting
Address: 9711 W Dry Creek Rd, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Neighborhood: Sonoma
Phone: 866.572.3552
Web Site: http://www.bellawinery.com
What to Wear: casual to dressy casual
Fave Points: the tasting caves! I believe these can be rented for special events.
My Occasion: catching up with a girlfriend
My Fave Wine: 2006 Sonoma Country Syrah

Menu pricing and availability subject to change.

My Dish

My friend has already been out to wine country and since she lives in San Francisco, was able to gather a slew of good winery recommendations before our trip. She hand-selected a handful that she thought would be good to visit, which was awesome because I knew nothing about the wineries out in the Sonoma area.

First up on the agenda was Bella Vineyards + Wine Caves . Thanks to our staying up late chit-chatting, sleeping in, and late breakfast, we didn’t make it to the first vineyard until about 2PM, which was fine with us because neither me or my friend like to rush around.

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The weather was a bit uncooperative and scheduled to be rainy and overcast. Luckily, we mostly just had overcast with some peeks of sun throughout the day.

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After seeing the Bella sign at the entrance, we drove up a little hill and parked. The view from just the parking lot was spectacular! So scenic!

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We saw a cute doggie running around the picnic area where people were enjoying lunch outside.

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Since we didn’t bring any food with us, we headed straight for the tasting cave.

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We first hit up the cutesy boutique area, inside the cave, where they had lovely platters, other plate ware, and random trinkets.

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Next, it was on to the tasting area. The place was pretty packed, but we waited a couple minutes till some people left so we could squeeze in.

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We selected the Tasting of Current Release Wines.

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We got started with our wine tasting.

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They had little menus printed out so you could read a blurb about the wine you were tasting.

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I loved how the tasting glasses had the vineyard’s logo etched into them. I would learn over our trip to wine country that this is a common theme for the wineries.

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Getting another taste.

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At the tasting counter!

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The inside of the cave was themed nicely – everything was muted in color, and the cave had a relaxing feeling.

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They had barrels, wine bottles, and boxes of wine piled up behind the tasting counter.

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More vino!

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We wrapped up our tasting and headed back out of the cave. My friend advised me to pace myself on wine-buying since we had 4 more wineries on our agenda, which sounded like a good strategy to me since I wasn’t exactly budgeted to go too crazy on the wine-buying. I thought the wines at Bella were pretty good, but it was tough to decide on buying something or not since I had nothing to compare my tasting to. I decided to hold off on buying any wine just yet, though I’d end up wishing later I’d gotten at least 1 bottle.   

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The winery had some proud awards and other plaques displayed throughout the caves.

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On the way out.

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Almost there.

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It wasn’t a long walk from the tasting counter to the door…I just took a lot of photos since I thought the view was interesting. Check out all the people having picnics in the background!

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Here are the hills above the Bella caves.

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The sun even peeked out for a bit.

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I didn’t buy any wine, but I did get some Zinfandel Grape Jelly! I can’t wait to try this stuff! I thought it was made by the winery, but upon reading the label, realized it was made by Zin Restaurant , which we didn’t get to visit (this trip).

Final Dish

I absolutely loved my trip to Bella Vineyards + Wine Caves. The wine caves really gave a unique flair to the winery and made it a must-stop for my friend and me. The people working the tasting counters were very friendly and quite knowledgeable. I’d love to go back to Bella some time soon, but next time, I’ll be sure to bring a picnic basket so I can enjoy their scenic setting with some tasty treats and some extra spending money so I can bring a bottle of wine or 2 home with me.