Y’all. I can remember when I first started drinking “wine” in college.My roommates and I would all take turns buying a box of Franzia or a Jug of Carlos Rossi sangria….haha I can promise you I have since then upgraded and constantly keep my house stocked with my favorite wines (Im a cab girl— but lets be honest, I don’t discriminate when it comes to wine and will drink just about anything).
Recently my friend Amanda and I (The Miller Affect) took a little weekend getaway to wine country with our men. That is one trip I could make multiple times a year and it would never get old! This was actually only my second time to visit wine country so I was excited to go back
On Thursday we flew into San Francisco and made our way to the cutest little town called Healdsburg which is about an hour and a half NW of San Fran. Last time I visited we stayed in Napa but I have always heard how charming Healdsburg was. I can’t say enough about this little town. I always try to find places when I travel that don’t feel too “touristy”. Healdsburg was the perfect destination— wonderful shops, restaurants, wineries and tasting rooms all within walking distance.
Where to Stay- Healdsburg 235 Suites
On Thursday after making the drive from San Fran to Healdsburg we checked into 235 Suites. Talk about the suite life! 235 was perfectly situated right in the middle of town within walking distance to literally everywhere we went. Our 3 bedroom suite came with a fully stocked kitchen, a living room perfect for lounging, and the cutest little balcony overlooking a creek behind us. Every morning I would use the Keurig to make my coffee and go out and sit on the balcony for a bit— it was so relaxing. All 3 of the bedrooms had California King size beds, the most AMAZING bathrooms. Ours had 2 shower heads and a massive bathtub! I love my baths, so I was in heaven. However, probably one of my favorite things were in each room there was a little wooden compartment right in front of the bed and with the touch of a button a big screen TV would rise out of it! I might or might not have geeked out over that a little bit. I wish we would have had one day to relax and lay in bed all day and binge watch TV. We also had a cleaning service that would come to our rooms each day which was so nice to come home to a clean place and a bed ready to crawl into. 235 Suites was perfectly suited for all of our needs during our trip— from the rooms to the location, it was perfect for us! Click HERE for more information on 235 Suites.
What We Did
On Thursday after checking in we had just enough time to fit in a tasting that day so we made our way to Bella Wine Caves which was about 10 minutes from Healdsburg. We actually did our tasting in an actual cave! It was so cool, and I loved their rose. Which is saying a lot coming from me because I am picky when it comes to rose. After we wrapped up our tasting we went back to get ready for dinner at Bravas which was a yummy tapas restaurant just a short walk away from 235 Suites. I love tapas because you are able to have a little bit of everything (indecisive, much?), our favorite was the paella, the bacon wrapped dates, and a yummy (but dangerous) watermelon cocktail.
On Friday we all got up, and got ready to make our way into Sonoma for the day! Sonoma is about 40-45 min from Healdsburg but the drive is so beautiful it flew by! Our first tasting was at Viansa which was probably my favorite from the entire trip. The views alone were AMAZING. Viansa sits up on a hill overlooking the vineyard and they had these adorable little wooden huts that sat on the top of the hill with the most stunning views. There honestly wasn’t a wine here that I didn’t enjoy. However, the beauty of the location alone would have kept me there all day. I would definitely recommend spending some time here and grabbing a bottle and relaxing. Next, we had a lunch reservation at the infamous Sonoma spot, The Girl and the Fig. I had heard of The Girl and the Fig numerous times through Instagram and word of mouth… but would it live up to the hype? (Like I said, I am a little “iffy” when it comes to touristy-popular spots) The verdict: I was SUPER impressed! I got a fig and arugula salad, and the quiche which was one of the best I’ve ever had!
After lunch we had time for one more quick tasting at Benzinger— unfortunately, we were pretty pressed for time here and did not get to stay as long as I would have liked! Most tastings end at 5 so we only got to stay for about 30 minutes. However, the wines were great and the property was beautiful so I was happy with our experience. After this we made our way back to Healdsburg to get ready for dinner at Willies Seafood. I am probably not the best source for a true review of Willies because I do not really eat seafood! However, the drinks were amazing (I got cucumber martinis) and I had a few small plates of other non seafood options which were great as well! The rest of the gang really liked the shrimp and scallops so I would take their word for it! After dinner we all called it a pretty early night because we had a full lineup of wine tastings the next day!
Saturday once again started off with an 11AM tasting— but seriously, can I start every day like that? All of our destinations were around Healdsburg so we never had more than a 5-10 min drive. First stop was bubbles at J winery! Sparkling wine was the perfect way to start the day (they of course had red and white wine too but we wanted to switch it up a bit). J Winery was beautiful and had a great patio and probably the best service we had the entire trip— our girl who served us was so cute!
Stop #2 was MacRostie which was probably my second favorite winery we visited on our trip! As soon as we walked up they greeted us with a glass of wine— talk about amazing service! The entire staff there was so kind and welcoming. We sat outside on the patio overlooking their vineyard and had a super yummy charcuterie board along with our tastings. I ended up purchasing bottles of Pinot from MacRostie (whichhhh I wrapped up in clothes and carried in my suitcase on the way home— talk about saying a little prayer when I opened it up as I got home).
I also want to say a special thank you to Cadillac for loaning us this amazing car to get around in during our stay! Our car was absolutely amazing and so luxurious! One of my favorite parts of the trip was driving through the beautiful vineyards and scenery!
Our 3rd stop of the day was Landmark Vineyards which was another favorite of mine. I think everybody ended up taking a bottle home from here. I am also pretty sure that all the wine starts to taste amazing once you are on your third tasting! Finally our 4th and final tasting of the day (which I would recommend no more than 3-4 a day ) was at Arista. From the moment we arrived I knew this one was going to be the perfect spot to end the day. The grounds were beautiful— they even had a Japanese garden to walk through which was gorgeous. I will be honest, at this point we were about wined out! Ha!
Back to Healdsburg we went and I will be honest at that point I could have crawled into our comfy bed and turned on the TV and called it a night! Daniel and I decided since it was our last night we would venture into town for a little date night at this italian spot that was recommended to us multiple times called Campo Fina. I am SO glad that we did because this was probably my favorite dinner spot we went to! Great atmosphere on the cutest outdoor patio with a bocce ball court and everything! We split a pizza, ravioli andddd maybe one final bottle of wine. Go big or go home, right? At this point, I think we were officially wined out, and ready to pass out. Ha!
Sunday we got up, walked to a cute little breakfast spot and then packed up to head back to San Francisco to catch our flights back home. It was such a fun weekend getaway, but I will say I wish we would have had at least one full day longer so we were able to spread out the wineries a little better and “relax” a bit more. I guess that means we will just have to plan a trip back? I know a ton of you have spent some time in Wine Country, what are your favorite spots? Also I know I briefly covered A LOT of information and places in todays post— if you have any other questions about anything always feel free to reach out. I would be more than happy to help!
**A special thank you to 235 Suites for hosting us during our stay to Healdsburg. As always, all opinions are my own. **