The Russian River Valley is home to 200+ wineries that span through the communities of Santa Rosa, Healdsburg, Sebastopol, Windsor, and Forestville. Our Best Russian River Wineries tasting itinerary takes you on an adventure through the western stretch of the Russian River Valley, starting at Paradise Ridge near Santa Rosa, then NW to Hook & Ladder, Woodenhead, Notre Vue, and Foppiano.
Click here to start this Best Russian River Valley Wine Route.
4545 Thomas Lake Harris Dr. Santa Rosa, CA 95403 – (707) 528-9463
Purchase Wines – Cabernet, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Zinfandel, Blend-Sparkling
In 1961 when Walter Byck married Marijke Hoenselaars in Holland, little did the newlyweds know what their future would hold. Yet their courage and passion would lead them to discover and build a wine estate in the heart of the world’s finest grape-growing region, the Russian River Valley.
Walter and Marijke moved to Santa Rosa in 1965, with two of their five children already in tow. They soon realized they had found a haven to raise their growing family. In 1978, after more than a year of searching for family property, Walter came home and said, “Marijke, children, I have seen Paradise!” Thereafter, the 155 acres overlooking the Russian River Valley in Sonoma County, California became known as Paradise Ranch.
2134 Olivet Road Santa Rosa, CA 95401 – (707) 526-2255
Purchase Wines – Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Red Blend, Zinfandel, Rose, Sangiovese
The Next Generation of Russian River Valley Wines
Hook & Ladder Winery continues the legacy of one of Russian River Valley’s most influential wine families. Founded in 2003 by pioneering growers and vintners Cecil and Christine De Loach, and helmed today by their grandson, winemaker Jason De Loach, Hook & Ladder showcases the diversity of the appellation the family helped to define, in a portfolio of limited-production bottling’s from their Russian River Valley estate vineyards. The name Hook & Ladder pays homage to Cecil De Loach’s 17- year career as a San Francisco firefighter.
5700 River RdSanta Rosa, CA 95401 – (707) 887-2703
Purchase Wines – Carignan, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Zinfandel, Blend-Sparkling
Nikolai Stez is the Woodenhead winemaker. He has been at fermentation since he was a boy making the traditional Russian drink “kvas” (a fermented bread or fruit drink) that his immigrant parents taught him to make. In college, he made wines for his biology and botany classes and started making home wines in earnest since 1986. Nick worked for 17 years of crush fun for the famous “two guys in a garage cult winery” that put Russian River Valley Pinot on the map. Working for Burt Williams as an assistant winemaker confirmed his life’s passion for wine. Born in San Francisco and living on the Russian River since age one, he considers the North Coast his back yard and knows it well, from Sonoma County north to Humboldt and Del Norte. The coast range is his playground.
11010 Estate Ln. Windsor, CA 95492 – (707) 433-4050
Purchase Wines – Champagne, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc
There are only a handful of experiences in life that can be described as such – a moment so awe-inspiring that you take pause.
In 1992, we were captivated by just such a moment, as we stood atop a ridge overlooking 710 acres of breathtaking, rolling hills of Sonoma County countryside. This incredible landscape forged over eons would one day fulfill our vision as the Notre Vue Estate. We have established an agrarian heritage through thoughtful determination. The estate vineyards are tenderly cared for and are the foundation for our wines.
Preserving the natural beauty of the land has always been at the heart of our vision. For this reason, the estate includes 350 acres of protected open space land, preserving the beauty of Notre Vue Estate for generations to come. This synergy creates a harmony that supports the abundant wildlife as well as the natural flora and fauna.
12707 Old Redwood Hwy. Healdsburg, CA 95448 – (707) 433-7272
Purchase Wines Chardonnay, Petite Sirah, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Port, Rose
Founded in 1896 by Giovanni Foppiano, Foppiano Vineyards is one of Sonoma County’s oldest continually-operated, family-owned wineries. Our family has supplied northern California with wine for over a century, surviving Prohibition in the 1920s by selling home winemaking kits. Five generations later we believe that through the strength of our family, community and a commitment to quality, our traditions can be maintained and thrive. We’re proud to be one of the founding members of the Russian River Valley AVA, and continue to enjoy the fruits of our hardworking Italian heritage.
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