In Sonoma County, there is no shortage of fantastic wineries to go to; however, for my money, Madrone is one of the areas best. Everything from the property to the people and, of course, the wine varietals, sets this unique spot apart from the competition. Madrone is the third oldest winery in the area as well, so it houses a bunch of history, here is all the information so you can check it out yourself.
- Tasting fee: $15 – No appointment needed
- Hours: Everyday 10 AM – 5 PM
- Location: 777 Madrone Rd, Glen Ellen, CA 95442
- This information is from my visit in 2016
From downtown Sonoma, Madrone Winery is about a 12-minute drive north. You will want to go north on Highway 12 towards Glen Ellen / Santa Rosa. The winery is located off Madrone Road, and there is a large parking area. Be sure to check out the nearby Jack London State Historic Park when you are there as well.
Madrone Estate Winery is beautiful from the moment you pull up. There is an old barn (which has been retrofitted but with original stone walls) from the 1800s, used for fermenting and a lovely new tasting room next door.
The tasting room is large and inviting with grey tones and a large granite bar.
The back wall of the tasting room is uncovered stones, which are from the original 1800s wall.
Tastings of the wine run $15 for five pours (as of 2016). I found the wine to be above average and was excited to meet the winemaker Kat who has a vast love for wine, which comes through in what they are producing.
In the back, they have a tree that shows the rich history of the winery, all the way back to the 1800s. The Hurst family was even an owner at one point during its history.
Exiting the tasting room, you will see the back patio where they have lots of tables covered in sun sails, right next to the “Window Block” of vines, which are the original vines from when the area was first planted.
It is a lot of fun just to sit out here with a glass of wine and enjoy the beautiful property and old plants.
They also have a full bocce ball court back here as well, but unfortunately, it was raining when we went, so we were not able to play.
Behind the fermentation area, is a large tree that is said to be over 400 years old and that local legend states – John London used to ride his horse down here and write under the famous tree.
One of the other things that makes Madrone Estate Winery stand out is the events that they have on the property. This is one of the only places in Sonoma Valley where you can have weddings and events in a vineyard like this.
The wedding area is in the back, and it is beautiful. The altar sits right next to the vines, and it can hold up to 200 people I was told.
The reception is then held by the old fermentation building, which looks like a beautiful spot to sit under the market lights on a warm summer night. Here is some more information on the events.
My wife and I spent a good few hours wandering the property, enjoying the drinks, and just relaxing in the tasting room while we were in Sonoma. Be sure to add Madrone Estate Winery to your list next time you visit the area and let me know what you think in the comments.
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