Many people who take a trip through wine country will only ever visit the big-name wineries that they are familiar with. While this is certainly an acceptable way to travel, it also means missing out on some of the little gems that are right around the corner from the larger wineries. For every established winery operating in the US, there are several boutique wineries that are often family-owned, and who deliver a small selection of wines every year. It’s easy to assume that these little spots are not worth the time of day, but you would be wrong, as there are plenty of exceptional boutique wineries delivering unforgettable taste experiences. Let’s take a closer look at just a few in Sonoma and Napa Valley.
Mounts Family Winery – Healdsburg is one of the more popular locations in Sonoma, as it serves as the perfect base camp for the many wineries that are close to the city. If you plan on being in Healdsburg and want a wine tasting experience that is a little more laid back than most, then we suggest a visit to Mounts Family Winery. They go out of their way to welcome all their guests and make them feel as though they are a part of the family.
Artesa Vineyards and Winery – Located in Napa Valley, this winery is one that you might miss if you aren’t paying attention, simply because it looks unlike any other winery you have been to. Rather than having a Tuscan villa o rustic barn as the setting, the Artesa Winery looks more like a modern art museum than anything else. Don’t let the looks fool you, though, as the wine here is fantastic.
Homewood Winery – As far as wineries go, they don’t come much smaller or more boutique than Homewood. Located in Sonoma, this winery is essentially a one-man affair, as owner Dave Homewood prefers to keep things as small and manageable as possible. He is definitely doing something right, though, as the small tasting room serves up some wonderful wine samples.
Fritz Underground Winery – This unique little winery in Dry Creek Valley may be small, but it gets a lot of attention from visitors to the region, which is why you may want to call ahead and reserve a tasting time. This is a location that you will want to spend some time in. The wines on offer are of very high quality, and the gardens in the winery are just waiting to be explored after you do some sampling in the tasting room.
By: Stephanie Cara