As we enjoy beautiful landscapes as well as wine, traipsing through California’s wine regions is something we enjoy a lot. Each offers unique discoveries, from the mustard seed fields lining vineyards, the gorgeous oak trees we’re lucky to have so many of in the state, and of course, the varietals grown here that are crafted into some of the world’s most delectable wines.
While Napa and the Central Coast both great destinations, I’ve usually preferred Sonoma County. Sonoma offers great food and wine as do the other regions, of course, but also more compelling scenery, some interesting farm trails that include olive oil, cheese producers, and such, and did I mention, some fine wine.
On a recent visit I was lucky to discover and stay at the Farmhouse Inn, a luxury boutique property of 25 rooms tucked away in Forestville, near the Russian River. Kayaking and canoeing on the river is minutes away, as is the Armstrong Redwood Reserve, for walks and hikes through a 1000-year old redwood grove (photo below). And well-known wineries like Iron Horse and Merry Edwards are a hop, skip and jump away. Between the Farmhouse and the over-populated town of Healdbsburg nearby is one of the wine roads loaded with tasting opportunities. The owners also have their own Lost and Found small production vineyard of Pinot Noir.
But what of the Farmhouse? Couldn’t be more comfortable. Our deluxe room included marble bath with heated floors, a Jacuzzi tub and a walk-in shower that could be converted to a steam room, with motion-detector lighting to help guide your night calls to the loo. The king bed was so comfortable, and other features included a large seating area, outdoor patio with indoor/outdoor stone fireplace, large walk-in closet and a complimentary provisions box with sodas and tasty snacks. Sofas and chairs in all rooms are slip-covered, and each room has unique but practical furniture pieces, thoughtfully selected and positioned.
In addition to the deluxe and luxury rooms/suites, there are a few cottages that are priceless and unique, given they include a built in sauna!
There’s a newly opened spa on property, and a fitness room is scheduled to be added as the owners finalize improvements. An outdoor dining area is also being added immediately behind the restaurant, as well as more fountains.
If you’ve been to the Carneros Inn and love its design and architectural touches, you’ll probably feelquite at home here as well, if not more so because of the much smaller scale of the Farmhouse Inn.
The Farmhouse Inn has a great concierge staff, and you can enjoy complimentary wine tastings at a dozen nearby wineries that normally have a tasting fee, and they can help guide your visit as well. If you don’t elect to stay at the Farmhouse Inn, at least consider a meal experience here. We’d be happy to make the arrangements for you. Bon appetite.