The Sonoma Plaza is the largest plaza in all of California and is a focal point of beautiful Sonoma County. The Plaza’s eight acres and the surrounding street grid were laid out by General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo in 1836, turning Sonoma from a mission town to a Mexican style pueblo. Today the Plaza is lined with charming shops, popular restaurants and Sonoma specialties, including world-renowned cheeses and wines. The plaza is a quaint square filled with tourists and Sonoma residents enjoying all of the wonderful shops, restaurants, parks and tasting rooms the charming square has to offer. It feels like just about every store or restaurant sells wine, but the Sonoma Plaza is currently home to 20 inviting tasting rooms that offer fine wine from Sonoma County’s award winning wineries. So next time you take a day trip to the Plaza, make sure to bring this guide for the best tasting rooms on the square! If you like what you taste in the tasting rooms, buy a bottle and enjoy it on the Sonoma Plaza—the only public park in California allowing open alcohol! Cheers!
Note: All numbers below correspond to the locations on the map below.
1. Adobe Road Winery
Guests can enjoy tastes of current releases, and by a few gems from the Adobe Road Library wines or just sit down and relax with a bottle of delicious wine in a warm and inviting lounge. The tasting room also offers a beautiful patio where you can kick your feet up and enjoy the fruits of this wineries labor. Visitors are often greeted by winemaker, Michael Scorsone and are treated to a personal tasting with him. Next time you’re taking a stroll through the historic Sonoma Plaza, make sure to stop in at this elegant, but cozy tasting room!
2. Bryter Estates
Enjoy the BRYTER side of life at this family owned tasting room! This friendly and quaint tasting room is cleverly located on Vine Alley and serves wine from some of Sonoma’s best vines. Don’t pass by this alley where the Sonoma Court Shops are located, there’s much to be tasted down this way. Guests can enjoy award winning handcrafted wines from a winery located in the heart of Sonoma. Bryter Tasting Room offers private tastings by appointment and is open daily for Sonoma tourists and residents. So make your life a little BRYTER and visit this exceptional tasting room!
3. Charles Creek Vineyard
Charles Creek Vineyard is a boutique producer of fruit forward and food friendly chardonnays, cabernets, merlots, and the most decadent chocolate port. Guests will be greeted by the tasting room’s signature employee, Ms. Moo-Lot, who loves wine so much she is made out of corks! Charles Creek Vineyards offers a variety of award winning wines and shares these gems in their tasting room for anyone strolling along the Plaza!
4. Envolve Winery
Envolve Winery was founded by three childhood best friends who have grown up to craft organic wines from the grapes of Sonoma County. You may have seen one proprietor, Ben Flajnik, on ABC’s The Bachelor. This winery emphasizes the enjoyment of wine and the importance of friendship through their many events, private tastings and of course, their wine! One of the plaza’s newest tasting rooms, it offers four different tastings, group tastings for parties ranging from eight to 12 and private events for parties of fifty or more. Relax on the tasting room’s back lounge while sipping wine, indulging in some delicious cheese, watching sports and most importantly, enjoying friendship!
5. Eric K James Vineyards and Hoffman Cellars
Eric K James Vineyards offers fun, seated tasting experiences that are personal, interactive and educational. Hoffman Family Cellars owns and makes four wine brands (Headbanger, 401K, Curveball, Atmosphere) and shares this tasting room on the historic Sonoma Square. Down a back alley among some boutique shops, the tasting room features small production syrah’s and pinot noir’s and local olive oils and vinegars. Guests can enjoy live music and private tastings in the back courtyard. Make sure to stop at this fun tasting room to try some of Sonoma’s best wines!
6. Hawkes Winery
The Hawkes family has been growing grapes in Sonoma County since 1971 and specializes in great hospitality and delicious cabernet’s! Growing 100% varietal grapes for over forty years, and bottling under the Hawkes private label since 2002, father-and-son winemakers Stephen and Jake Hawkes produce handcrafted wines from their family-owned vineyards in the Alexander Valley. Guests can taste Cabernet, Merlot and Chardonnay indoors or on the patio at this charming tasting room on the Plaza!
7. Haywood Estate
Haywood Estate Vineyards has grown elegant wines on terraces carved from the rocky slopes of Sonoma since 1980. Today, Haywood Estate Winery emphasizes single vineyard Zinfandels, Italian Primitivos, Cabernet Francs and Chardonnays. Each wine demonstrates the vineyards unique site characteristics and offers outstanding aromas and tastes. In addition to the current Estate portfolio, the winery also offers Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petite Verdot, Malbec, Grenache, Mourvedre, and Syrah. Guests have the opportunity to taste all of these different wines at the winery’s sophisticated tasting room staffed with employees who are familiar and passionate about Haywood Estate wines!
8. Highway 12 Winery and Vineyards
At the Highway 12 tasting room, guests enjoy complimentary tastings, a wealth of local knowledge and tips on must-sees in the area. In 1825, a block north of the Highway 12 tasting room, padres of the Sonoma Mission planted the first vineyard in what would become California’s Highway 12 Wine Corridor. With the arrival of Highway 12 Wines on the Plaza, the significance of that historic planting has finally come full circle. The staff at Highway 12’s tasting room is passionate about their location and award winning wines ensuring guests leave happy and educated. So next time you are strolling the plaza, make sure to stop at this warm and inviting tasting room!
9. Kamen Estate Wines
Kamen Estate is located at elevations reaching 1100′ to 1450′ in the southwestern Mayacamas Range, on the slopes of Mount Veeder, with the Napa County line less than a quarter of a mile away. Kamen Estate wines are grown with ripe fruit, low yields and are known for being high quality and terroir-driven. The tasting room presents a modern vibe and has walls adorned with quotations from screenwriter and owner, Robert Kamen’s movies. The Kamen Estate tasting room offers a new sophisticated and urban feel as opposed to the quaint country setting of most tasting rooms, and is still a must do on you next trip to the plaza!
10. R2 Wine Company
R2 Wine Company produces food friendly and great tasting wines with great expressions and representations of their origins. The R2 tasting room awaits Sonoma tourists and residents with warm earth tones and an open-air feel. Guests can sample a selection of the R2 wines or take a guided tour through the entire portfolio with the help of a knowledgeable member of the tasting room staff. The R2 Tasting Room is the perfect place to enjoy wine and enhance your Wine Country adventure, so make sure to stop in this stellar tasting room and relax after a long day of walking, dining, and shopping along the Plaza!
11. Roche Winery and Vineyards
Roche Winery offers more than 10 varietals, 25 years of award winning winemaking experience and down-to-earth Irish hospitality. The tasting room is housed in a lovely 1940’s craftsman style building that offers both indoor and outdoor tastings. Guests are able to taste the family’s award winning wine at the indoor or outdoor tasting bar, while seated and relaxing on the porch overlooking the square, or at comfortable outdoor tables on the shaded patio while taking in all of the action of downtown Sonoma. The tasting room offers a variety of food items, but also allows guests to pack a picnic and enjoy a tasting. The Roche Winery and Vineyards tasting room is a fun place to relax with friend and is a required stop on your plaza itinerary!
12. Rumpus Cellars
At Rumpus Cellars tasting room guests can sample select wines of character and unique taste, while enjoying a relaxed and eclectic vibe. Guests can choose from the Rumpus Red, Rumpus Syrah and Rumpus Cabernet Sauvignon. Rumpus Cellars offers delicious and exceptional wines with a twist that you won’t want to miss out on! So make sure to stop at this great tasting room, and remember… Rumpus Wines for Rumpus times!
13. Sojourn Cellars
Sojourn Cellars offers a seated tasting experience with top rated Pinot Noirs and Cabernet Sauvignons in a charming cottage just off the plaza. Guests will enjoy an intimate and relaxed setting in this delightful tasting room that offers one-hour comparative tastings. Sojourn Cellars consistently produces remarkable wines with a hands-off natural winemaking style that showcases the character and personality of the individual vineyards. Schedule you’re visit to this quaint tasting room, you won’t regret it!
14. Sonoma Enoteca
Wine tasting at Sonoma-Enoteca is a truly unique Wine Country experience! Ten different California wineries have collectively joined together to sell their limited production wines at this fabulous tasting room! There is always at least one representative behind the bar from one of the participating vintners, knowledgeable not only in their wines, but also all of the other wineries. Sonoma Enoteca offers both small boutique wines and a large selection of home, gift and wine accessories. Guests can enjoy a tasting or browse through cookbooks, clothing, furniture and more. From fine seating to corkscrews Sonoma Enoteca has something for everyone!
15. Spann Vineyards
Spann Vineyards strives to create food-friendly, unique wines that are memorable, yet blend seamlessly into the occasion. Memorable in their purity, authenticity, distinctiveness, and enjoyment, and seamless in how they integrate into the setting, whether it be with friends on the patio or accompanying a formal dinner, Spann Vineyards will linger pleasurably on your palate and in your memory. Winemaker, Betty Spann takes the best ideas and techniques from European and California winemakers and applies them to the delicious wines of Spann Vineyards. This tasting room offers exceptional service and tasty wines to people and pets of Sonoma County! Make sure to visit Spann Vineyards during you’re next trip to the plaza!
16. The Wine Room-Two Amigos/Glen Lyon Winery
Vito and Guido Vino are brothers of the grape who produce exceptional wines at great prices to offer you a deal you can’t refuse! Guests won’t be able to contain their laughter at this funny and laid back tasting room whether it be from the silly pictures on the walls or the hilarious wine makers themselves. Guests will enjoy wine tasting pleasures, along with several laughs, funny stories and lots of smiles. So come on by, swirl, sniff, sip and giggle!
17. Walt Vineyards
Walt Vineyards is committed to locating the finest Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vineyard sources on the Pacific Coast, and make compelling, delicious wines that are honest expressions of their vineyard sites. The tasting room offers a bar for larger groups and smaller tables for a more intimate feel. The staff at Walt Vineyard’s tasting room is knowledgeable and passionate about wine and makes sure guests do not leave unhappy or with unanswered questions. This tasting room combines the warmth of a Wine Country home with the inspiration of an art gallery and is immersed in the history and charm of the Sonoma Plaza. This tasting room is a necessary stop to end a great day at the Plaza!
18. Westwood Winery
Westwood produces food friendly and soil driven wines that satisfy desires for depth, structure, balance and finesse. Westwood Winery offers a completely unique and relaxed wine experience at an intimate tasting room in their own private courtyard. Guests can choose from a selection of Pinot Noir, Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, Counoise and Tannat during their own private tasting. Furnished with sofas and Persian rugs under a repro stamped-tin ceiling, Westwood Tasting Salon provides a casual setting for a serious sit-down tasting with the winemaker or friends. Make sure to visit Westwood’s urban Tasting Salon next time you are looking for something to do on the Plaza!
19. Enoteca Della Santina
Attached to a great restaurant, this winebar and retail wine shop specializes in wines from all over the world (with a Sonoma focus)! Serving 30 wines by the glass, sparkling, red, white, ports, dessert wines and more. Also offering plates of Italian cheeses and meats, guests can enjoy these small plates before having dinner next door Sunday through Thursday!
20. Sigh Sonoma
Jayme Powers, the “Bubble Boss,” noticed a lot of winery tasting rooms opening around the Sonoma Plaza, but there was a need for some bubbly! Signing the lease earlier this summer, Sigh Sonoma opened in September. Closed on Wednesday’s, Sigh is open until 8 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, and until 10 p.m. Friday – Sunday! Sigh has a great range of bubbly for you to try from local Sonoma sparkling wines, to ‘real’ Champagne, to bubbly from South Africa and New Mexico and all over! Enjoy 2 oz. pours, whole glasses or just buy the bottle to share at the market, on a picnic or bring home. So take a peek (and a taste!) into the lounge, located in the Sonoma Court Shops, next time you are on the plaza.