Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Sonoma Valley

I've been wanting to go to Sonoma Valley in a while, and at last Sonya, Lucas and I decided to just hop on the car and go! We read a few things about the wineries and Sonoma, but not too much.. we just wanted to see how it was.
I was very pleased by the fact that it wasn't super crowded as I was thinking - evidently it's really true that Napa is a lot more famous than Sonoma. I enjoyed the scenery and the sun - for once this summer I was hot!
It's not comparable at all with the wine growing country I'm used to - Le Langhe, in Piemonte. Here there are almost no hills, and what's most amazing is that it's a desert! Wherever people don't water, there's only dry soil and burnt grass. It's amazing that it's one of the most important wine counties of the US.
Given the fact that we left at 1.30 pm (after Mass and brunch, it was Sunday!), we had time only to visit three wineries. In particular, we went at Mayo (on Sonoma's main square), Valley of the Moon and Cohn's. Among these three, I preferred by far Valley of the Moon (see here one of their corners):
The lady who was serving the wine for the tasting was really nice, and their wines were very good. We had a Barbera that amazed me - in Piemonte, Barbera is the cheapest wine, and that's kind of acidic and tart (basically, I don't like it). This was so good we bought a bottle of it. We also bought a bottle of Pinot Gris which we really liked. It wasn't super expensive (~$18 a bottle - much more than I would normally pay, but for once it's ok), and the tasting was free (it's the only place we found). The wines at Mayo were also good, but too expensive. I wasn't enthusiastic of the white selection that Cohn's had us taste.
In the end, it was a very nice day - thanks to Lucas who volounteered to drive and didn't drink as much as Sonya and I ;) - we'll go again and visit more! For the moment, enjoy the beauty of these grapes:
I love their color, in the sun.

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