A Sonoma wine-tasting itinerary for Mother’s Day

A glass of chardonnay and Mother’s Day seem to go hand in hand, which may be why so many people head to Wine Country to celebrate mom. To give the day an even more maternal twist, head to Sonoma Valley and put these mom-owned wineries on the itinerary. Not only do they pour a lot of love into their kids, their business is a labor of love that they bottle up for the rest of us to enjoy.

Dutton Estate Winery

When Tracy Dutton opened Dutton Estate in 1995, she poured flights for guests with a baby perched on her hip. Now that baby — daughter Kyndall — works alongside her mom in the 1930s Sebastopol farmhouse that serves as the tasting room, with two more daughters, Kylie and Karmen, ready to follow in their mother and sister’s footsteps.

Sebastopol's Dutton Estate makes a splendid wine-tasting destination forMother's Day. Co-owner Tracey Dutton runs the tasting room with her daughter, Kyndall.(Courtesy Dawn Heumann)
Sebastopol’s Dutton Estate makes a splendid wine-tasting destination for Mother’s Day. (Courtesy Dawn Heumann) 

Inside the cozy tasting room, you can relax on a comfy sofa while drinking in vineyard views and sipping estate chardonnay and pinot noir, grown by Dutton’s husband Joe, a sixth-generation Sonoma County farmer, who manages the family’s 1,300-acre ranch. Or reserve a seated food-and-wine pairing ($60) with a seasonal menu created by Dutton’s mother, Carol Kozlowski-Every, owner of nearby Kozlowski Farms. Don’t miss the newly released Fuji hard apple cider from the family orchard, paired with a freshly baked ginger cookie, just like mom used to make.

Details: Dutton Estate is open daily from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 8757 Green Valley Road, Sebastopol. Tastings range from $15-$60. www.duttonestate.com

Breathless Wines

If it’s bubbles and baubles mom is after, a visit to Breathless Wines is in order. Sisters Sharon Cohn and Rebecca and Cynthia Faust, who have eight children and one grandchild between them, launched their label as a tribute to their mother, Martha.

Like their wine, the tasting room also sparkles. Crafted out of four shipping containers that feel more chic than industrial, the room doubles as a boutique, filled with jewelry and a collection of pretty Champagne flutes and coupes.

Healdsburg's Breathless Wines are a collaboration between winemaker PennyGadd-Coster, left, and owners -- and sisters -- Cynthia Faust, Sharon Cohn and Rebecca Faust. (Breathless Wines)
Healdsburg’s Breathless Wines are a collaboration between winemaker Penny Gadd-Coster, left, and owners — and sisters — Cynthia Faust, Sharon Cohn and Rebecca Faust. (Breathless Wines) 

Surrounded by a flower garden, the patio is an attractive oasis a few blocks off Healdsburg’s town square, and a great place to sample sparkling wine from award-winning winemaker Penny Gadd-Coster. The pinot noir-based Blanc de Noirs is a treat, as is the Brut, which is served with a side of potato chips.

Details: Tastings are available from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday through Tuesday, for $16 or up to $69, if you opt for the sabrage experience, which includes a lesson in opening a bottle of bubbly with a saber. 499 Moore Lane, Healdsburg; www.breathlesswines.com

Horse and Plow

As the mother of a young son, Suzanne Hagins, owner of Sebastopol’s Horse and Plow, knows wine tasting with little ones can be a challenge. So families who visit the “tasting barn” are presented with both a wine-tasting menu and a kids menu that includes popcorn, organic fruit and bags of feed for the chickens.

While the kids are occupied at the chicken coop across the lawn, parents can relax on the sunny patio and sip the newly released gewürztraminer with a wonderfully floral aroma or the juicy grenache. Or try one of the four ciders, like the staff-favorite Heirloom, a mix of apple varieties from local orchards.

Details: Open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Monday. A flight of four wines is $18; four ciders is $14. 1272 Highway 116, Sebastopol; www.horseandplow.com

Fathia Vineyards

Fathia Vineyards is known for its estate-grown cabernets. (Fathia Vineyards)
Fathia Vineyards is known for its estate-grown cabernets. (Courtesy Javier Vallin) 

Owner Fausta Franco-Guerrero runs this small Kenwood tasting room — which opened just before Mother’s Day last year — along with just one other employee. So chances are good you’ll get to taste the two estate-grown cabernets with the woman who guides these wines from grape to glass.

The Sonoma Valley native, who has three children still in school, credits her mother’s encouragement for her own success as one of the very few Latina winery owners in the state. In addition to the cabernets, the $20 tasting fee includes an aromatic viognier, a crisp sauvignon blanc and a pinot noir with bright cherry and pepper notes.

Details: Open from 12 to 5 p.m. Thursday through Monday. 8910 Highway 12, Kenwood;  www.fathiavineyards.com

Pedroncelli Winery

If low-key wine tasting is more mom’s speed, head to Pedroncelli Winery in Geyserville. This family-owned winery predates Prohibition, thanks in no small part to the steadfastness of generations of hard-working women, including third-generation owner — and mother of two grown children — Julie Pedroncelli St. John.

The large tasting room is unassuming, but there’s nothing modest about its sweeping views of the Dry Creek Valley. With 17 wines on the tasting menu to choose from, where to start? Sip a zinfandel rosé out at the bocce court, then head back inside for a taste of the Mother Clone Zinfandel and the Wisdom Cabernet, both fitting wines to toast the women who raise us.

Details: The tasting room is open from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily with a $10 tasting fee. 1220 Canyon Road, Geyserville; www.pedroncelli.com

Source: mercurynews
A Sonoma wine-tasting itinerary for Mother’s Day