Wine & Travel

Snooth User: Maniac Henziak

Healdsburg in February

Posted by Maniac Henziak, Jan 3, 2011.

My wife and I are heded to Sonoma in Feb and I have read a number of posts and I have ben doing some research.  The info here is great!  I'm looking for a Zin close by Healdsburg and anything else we should do.  We really enjoy Zins, Cabs and good food.  Thanks!


Reply by outthere, Jan 3, 2011.

You can't get any closer than Seghesio. A quality producer with lots of tasting choices. Winery a block off of down town on Grove St.

Many here will recommend Dry Creek Valley so I'll let them plead their case. If you leave town to the north the first exit off US 101 is Lytton Springs Rd. Turn left (west) on Lytton Springs and go a couple miles to Ridge Vineyards. There you can taste through a large array of great Zins and Cabs. Ridge makes some of the most age worthy Zins in the area. From Ridge you continue west on LS Rd to Mazzocco Winery. More good cabs and zins. Further west will take you into the Dry Creek Valley.


Reply by sophiehudson, Jan 3, 2011.

I agree Seghesio and Ridge are two must stops - Rosenblum also has a tasting room in dowtown Healdsburg which is good!! For a couple of smaller vineyards - look up Forcini (Jim Forcini and his family make some great wines) and Preston Vineyards (nice wine and olive oil as well). Now in Healdsburg - Cyrus is a great restaurant!! Amazing caviar to start off your meal.  For a great lunch try Jimtown store...awesome sandwiches in a really cool building!! Enjoy.

Reply by spicypumpkin, Jan 3, 2011.

My husband and I will be traveling back to Sonoma in Feb as well.  Give a try, small vineyard but great Zins...and you can't beat the views.

Reply by outthere, Jan 3, 2011.

Just a note on Jimtown store. It's off the beaten path a bit out on Alexander Valley Rd. Worth the stop though. If you are going that direction you can find a host of good stops in Alexander Valley such as the above mentioned Stryker. Also Robert Young Vineyards has some real nice cabs. If you head south/east on 128, and you have a couple hours, the drive from Healdsburg to Calistoga through the Alexander and Knights Valleys is one of the most beautiful you will ever take. Then once over the hill into Napa Valley you can turn right on Petrified Forest Highway and head back over the hill to Santa Rosa and then north again to Healdsburg. Round trip 1 hour. But you will stop many many times for photo ops and tastings.

Damn I love living here.

Reply by dmcker, Jan 4, 2011.

It shines through, outthere, and we're all richer for your sharing.

Happy New Year.

Reply by napagirl68, Jan 4, 2011.

Outthere's suggestions are  GREAT.  Dude, I am so msging you b4 my next trip up!!!! :-)

spicypumpkin had a good one too... I have been to Stryker and like it...

Why no suggestions for Mauritson's Family Vineyards?  One of the best Zins out there, IMHO.  don't miss...

Reply by ethralls, Jan 4, 2011.

All great options already listed for sure.  I'll only add Bella which is further up DCV, but worth the trip.

Also, I work for Vintage Wine Estates and we have a tasting room in H'burg.  Really only one Zin on our tasting list, but if you're around the Plaza and want to stop by, give me a shout.  You can reach me via twitter at @VintageWineLife or @WineTonite (personal profile).  If you're not on twitter, just send me a note here and I'll give my other contact info.


Cheers! and Enjoy your trip


Reply by SoCoBryan, Jan 4, 2011.

I agree with all reccos, but also take a look at for some other great suggestions.  Have a GREAT Trip to beautiful Sonoma County.

Reply by John Andrews, Jan 4, 2011.

I would throw in the following two wineries for great zins:

Both are smaller(ish) wineries that focus on zinfandels and are lesser known.  However, both are, in my opinion, can't miss spots.  Bella is at the north end of Dry Creek Valley and Sausal is in Alexander Valley.  Both are a short drive from Healdsburg.  I would also throw in Sbragia (  They have one of the best views in Dry Creek and have great Zins & Cabs.  If Marisa is there when you are there say hi from John @ Loxton.


Reply by Maniac Henziak, Jan 5, 2011.

Awesome - Thanks everyone!  More than enough sugg here.  They will definitley be used.  We're gonna spend one night in Nappa too so we're really excited.  cheers!

Reply by Richard Foxall, Jan 8, 2011.

Okay, NG got to Mauritson--the cemetary Zin is off the charts and no heat or jamminess even at 15.5 ABV. Preston is great, but more IMO for the white Rhones.  Bella has some single vineyard designates that rocked me.  Seghesio is fine, but you can find it almost anywhere.  Instead, go to Talty if they are open--but you need to check ahead.  Different from Mauritson, less mouthfilling, but I have been slowly opening their 2004s--one bottle left--and they are just developing like few Zins you can imagine. So that's even more recommendations!

Reply by outthere, Jan 9, 2011.

There's something to be said about family owned wineries and Seghesio is a great example. Aside from their commonly found Zinfandels their Omaggio is excellent and they make their Venom from he oldest Sangiovese vineyards in America. A nice venue in the heart of Healdsburg.

Reply by Richard Foxall, Jan 9, 2011.

I don't want to disrespect Seghesio at all.  I think they do a great job of representing Zin and you can find it places like NY, where I can't get any of the ones I mentioned.  I think there basic bottling is a huge value year in and year out.  But if I am visiting DCV and H'burg, or if people want recs when they are, I lean toward what I can't get elsewhere.  Maybe I need to go there the next time I get up that way, just to get out of my rut.

That said, all the wineries I named are also family owned, yes?  I know I always see/talk to the families when I am there, except possibly at Bella.  Even at Unti, where I bought one of Linda's paintings. Oh, and for real family-run, try Teldeschi, who sells grapes to Seghesio but also bottles his own, which you can find at a restaurant or two and the winery, in my experience.  If there's tasting, it's a good bet Dan will be around himself.  Not a slick Napa-style owner, but usually on his way to get on the tractor and work himself, in dirty jeans and muddy boots.  He has the best inexpensive field blends, imo, better than Acorn.  (Some people love Acorn and will disagree.  De gustibus.)

Reply by Stephen Harvey, Jan 10, 2011.


I actually found an 06 Seghesio Zin in a bottle shop in Adelaide and bought it.

What should I eat with it.

Reply by outthere, Jan 10, 2011.

What designation was it?

  • Sonoma County
  • Cortina
  • Old Vine
  • Home Ranch
  • Rockpile
  • San Lorenzo

Makes a difference, not a hole lot, but a difference. The Sonoma County (blue capsule) is probably the most widely distributed among them and is good with spicy BBQ and grilled red meat, burgers etc... Let me know which one it its.


Reply by outthere, Jan 10, 2011.

Oops, one more thing. For me Seghesio zins like pungent cheese like Stilton or Huntsman on a cracker just as much as the before-mentioned eats.

Reply by Stephen Harvey, Jan 10, 2011.

Its in my wine fridge down ot the beachhouse, I will check when I get there on Friday, but it definitely has a blue capsule

Reply by madmanny, Jan 11, 2011.

We're headed out to Healdsburg next week.  We're catching a winemaker's dinner at the Dry Creek Kitchen (Charlie Palmer).  These dinners are always fun and it's just timing if you happen to be in the right place at the right time.  We always like to stop at Pedroncelli, grab some of their port and play a little bocce. Enjoy the trip.

Reply by outthere, Jan 11, 2011.

Seems like everyone around here is doing winemaker dinners as a way to boost slumping business during the recession. Hey, whatever works. Enjoy your visit. I hear Dry Creek Vineyards is being featured in January.

Reply by madmanny, Jan 11, 2011.

Thanks, It is Dry Creek Vineyards.  We're also seeing a lot of these dinners back east as well.

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