Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

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Jeff VanDenbussche
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Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#1 Post by Jeff VanDenbussche » July 31st, 2019, 3:53 pm

My wife and I , and another couple will be spending several days in Healdsburg in late October and are looking for both winery and restaurant recommendations. This is not our first trip to CA winery country (having stayed several times in Sonoma and Napa), but this is our first time staying in Healdsburg. I have read the Sonoma thread and have already reached out to a few Berserkers already. We like most varietals, especially Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Sauvignon Blanc, but are open to anything new. We generally like small boutique wineries where we get to spend time with the winemaker, and out in the vineyards if possible.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#2 Post by Dan Sch » July 31st, 2019, 5:24 pm

Some recent visits...

Porter Creek -- Pinot (3 or 4), Chard (2), Syrah, Carignane, Zinfandel, Viogner (1 of each) -- really old vines on the carignane, great people
Limerick Lane -- Zin and Syrah
Harvest Moon -- some great zin and a lot of other odd lots mixed in, including a sparkling gewurz

Not sure about walking through the vineyards in all of them, but pretty small operations and very knowledgeable/hands on.
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Ken Zinns
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#3 Post by Ken Zinns » July 31st, 2019, 5:32 pm

Not out in the vineyards and not Chard, Pinot, or SB, but my top recommendation in the area is the Idlewild tasting room just off the plaza in Healdsburg. Outstanding wines from Italian grape varieties and a memorable and educational tasting experience.

Others in the area that I'd recommend include Papapietro Perry, Unti, and Quivira (all a few miles from Healdsburg in Dry Creek Valley) and Holdredge in the southeast part of town. Again, probably not so much vineyard walking at those places but very good wines. Should be able to taste with John Holdredge if he's around, might be tougher to meet the winemakers at the other places but worth a try.

Needless to say, late October may be problematic in terms of timing for many winemakers as it may still be the tail end of crush for them.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#4 Post by Warren Taranow » July 31st, 2019, 7:25 pm

Ken Zinns wrote:
July 31st, 2019, 5:32 pm
Not out in the vineyards and not Chard, Pinot, or SB, but my top recommendation in the area is the Idlewild tasting room just off the plaza in Healdsburg. Outstanding wines from Italian grape varieties and a memorable and educational tasting experience.
Jeff,

I second the Idlewild recommendation. Outstanding.
If you want a Michelin Three Star experience, spending a lot of time and a lot of money, I'd definitely recommend Single Thread Farms Restaurant, right across the street from Idlewild. Don't do them sequentially; trust me on that one. After a tasting at Idlewild followed by dinner at Single Thread, someone might have stepped on my fingers as I tried to walk home. If you go to Singlethread, get the reserve wine pairing. Really expensive, but hey, you only live once. I mentioned it here.

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#5 Post by Dave H. » July 31st, 2019, 8:25 pm

Unti is a great stop. And Ridge has a tasting room just a stone’s throw from Healdsburg. A little corporate but it’s Ridge so the wines are great.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#6 Post by Keith_B » July 31st, 2019, 8:54 pm

Valette and Chalkboard for dinner. When we were there in April Fred Dame was dining with a big group at Valette. Chef Dustin is very talented.

I love the breakfast pizza at Downtown Bakery & Creamery.

MacRostie would be worth considering for a tasting.

Dry Creek General Store for a quick lunch while out tasting.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#7 Post by Jeff P » July 31st, 2019, 9:02 pm

Unti, Acorn, and/or Dutcher Crossing (great Chard IMO)
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#8 Post by Anthony V » July 31st, 2019, 9:13 pm

On the Healdsburg square I'd recommend Barndiva for a nice dinner and the Hartford Court tasting room for some great Chards and Pinot and Zin.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#9 Post by mattlock » July 31st, 2019, 9:38 pm

A little bit of a drive at 45min (although we stayed in Healdsburg as well so entirely doable), my wife and I really enjoyed our time and the wines (Pinot & Chard) at Donum Estate. Maybe 90min tasting/tour, requires an appointment and you will have a walk & drive through the vineyards to see the owners incredible contemporary art/sculpture collection mixed throughout the vines. Quite something to behold.

Also not far from Healdsburg, I enjoyed Lynmar Estate for PN & Chard, nice grounds too. Copain also not too far.

For food, I’ll second Valette and Single Thread in a heartbeat. Campo Fina is a fun casual lunch on the back patio or drinks prior to dinner elsewhere. Flying Goat for coffee 👍🏻

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#10 Post by Alan Rath » July 31st, 2019, 9:52 pm

Highly recommend Guiso Latin Fusion, quaint little place with very good food
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#11 Post by Anton D » July 31st, 2019, 10:31 pm

These are great and helpful topics. These questions come up often enough that it might be worth a pinned Napa thread like Brian’s Sonoma thread. Maybe even a subforum for area-specific travels for winos!
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#12 Post by Degarmo.j » July 31st, 2019, 10:33 pm

If you like a small production Pinot, make sure to check out cartograph. The owners are so lovely and the tasting room is very inviting. I think Reeve does a great job with their tastings and makes a fantastic Riesling (apt necessary) another good Pinot and Chardonnay spot would be Gary farrel, also need an apt. Unti is also a favorite. You can try emailing anthill farms also, they will make time for an apt also, wonderful Pinot.

Food: Valette is a must! Brass rabbit is also excellent, order every pasta dish. For brunch barndiva is a must. Flying goat for coffee every morning.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#13 Post by Yong Wei C. » August 1st, 2019, 3:15 am

Another vote for Ridge. For Sonoma more generally, we enjoyed Occidental and Littorai - both have tours around the facilities and/or vineyards.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#14 Post by AD Northup » August 1st, 2019, 5:18 am

Degarmo.j wrote:
July 31st, 2019, 10:33 pm
If you like a small production Pinot, make sure to check out cartograph. The owners are so lovely and the tasting room is very inviting. I think Reeve does a great job with their tastings and makes a fantastic Riesling (apt necessary) another good Pinot and Chardonnay spot would be Gary farrel, also need an apt. Unti is also a favorite. You can try emailing anthill farms also, they will make time for an apt also, wonderful Pinot.

Food: Valette is a must! Brass rabbit is also excellent, order every pasta dish. For brunch barndiva is a must. Flying goat for coffee every morning.

+1 for Cartograph. Serena, Alan and team are wonderful.

Another suggestion if you want to get outside pinot, etc. and enjoy Italian varietals, definitely check out DaVero Farms and Winery just outside of downtown.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#15 Post by R M Kriete » August 1st, 2019, 7:48 am

Holdredge Wines in town is a must! https://www.holdredge.com/

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#16 Post by Scott E. » August 1st, 2019, 8:31 am

We try to go to Healdsburg every year - primarily for Dry Creek Valley Zins and RRV Pinot and Chardonnay. I would add Benovia, Arista and Williams Selyem to the suggestions above. Cheers!
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#17 Post by z_hart » August 1st, 2019, 8:43 am

For the Dry Creek Valley, I'd recommend Zichichi for their zins (their Old Vine Zin comes from vines over 50+ yrs old) and Dutchers Crossing for their fantastic Chardonnay's.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#18 Post by Ken Lamb » August 1st, 2019, 9:38 am

I have dined at Single Thread twice and am in complete agreement with the points made. While I found the atmosphere a bit too serious, the food was terrific, the wine list a treasure trove and the staff on top of the service side.

I didn't see Barn Diva mentioned in the above posts. I've dined there at least half a dozen times and place it in the top tier in Healdsburg, below Single Thread but a great place to have lunch or dinner. Have your meal at an outside table in the garden if available, an even more delightful experience.

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#19 Post by Matt M . » August 1st, 2019, 4:03 pm

Ate at Valette two nights in a row on a visit a few weeks ago, you can't go wrong with anything on the menu.

Our SingleThread experience on the other hand wasn't as amazing as some others have described here... a couple of the dishes were so-so and went back to the kitchen unfinished, and while service, atmosphere, etc. where all great, I probably wouldn't go back. My experience might have been influenced by a bunch of Michelin dining a few weeks earlier in new york including atera, marea, batard and cash mono which I used as a comparison point.

RE: Tasting rooms, I second Limerick Lane & Lynmar recommendation. Flowers winery is 7 minutes outside town and well worthwhile as well (we were there on the 4th or 5th day it was open). In town, LaFolette just opened a tasting room and had some great Pinot's, and drop by Rockpile if you want some big high-scoring zin's.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#20 Post by Anton D » August 1st, 2019, 4:13 pm

Pop into Roadhouse to taste and listen to vintage stereo gear. last time we were there, we listened to a nice vintage Pacific Stereo complete Concept system. Hell, take a record to play!

Van is the man in the tasting room and he is pretty great.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#21 Post by JohnP » August 1st, 2019, 5:10 pm

If you're into Italian varietals and biodynamic farming, you have to check out DaVero, just 1/2 mile from downtown. They make a killer Sangiovese and their flagship wine is a reserve Sagrantino that will age for decades. They are just releasing the 2013 vintage. Ask for Andrew their manager, he's a rad guy and very knowledgeable.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#22 Post by G. Keeler » August 1st, 2019, 7:02 pm

Ceritas is walkable from town. By appointment only I believe.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#23 Post by KyleC » August 1st, 2019, 8:00 pm

Nn no particular order:
  • I honestly thought SingleThread was just OK. When you factor in the QPR, I wouldn't go back.
  • Noble Folk makes some of my favorite ice cream
  • Flying Goat is by far the best coffee around
  • +1 to Ridge Lytton Springs, Unti, and Porter Creek
  • I didn't have the best experience at MacRostie but the winery is undeniably beautiful and wines are decent
  • In Healdsburg proper but away from downtown, Hirsch and Ramey both have tasting rooms and both make great wines
  • Williams Selyem is a must visit if you can get in
  • I've had good experiences at Rochioli and they're one of the few pinot/chard specialists who also make SB
  • Apparently Flowers has a tasting room on Westside Road now as well (but of course you'd be contributing to college cheating scandal money :o
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#24 Post by JDavisRoby » August 1st, 2019, 8:20 pm

Valette is quite possibly one of my favorite dining experiences ever. We did a five course chef’s dinner. Food and service was unbelievable.

I’ve enjoyed Flanagan wines via friends over the years. Visited them at their new winery in 2017. They were redoing the vineyards at the time but based on recent photos it’s come around nicely. If you want something off the beaten path and overlooking the vineyards while you taste it’s a nice choice.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#25 Post by Gabe Berk » August 2nd, 2019, 11:23 am

You're in Zin country when in Healdsburg. I'd head over to Ridge for great Zinfandels and Rhone varietals . Iconic estate and they do vineyard tours. I'd also go to A Rafanelli for their Zin and Cabernet. A far as tasting rooms in Healdsburg, you have to go to Ramey as he's a master of Chardonnay, but also visit Hirsch and Siduri as well.

If you want some of the absolute best BBQ, visit KinSmoke. A mix match of American regional BBQ. Order a la carte and they bring your order to the table. Pop open some of that Zin you might buy and enjoy the pairing. Zin and BBQ go together like white on rice!!!

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#26 Post by Nicolas G. » August 2nd, 2019, 1:06 pm

Quivira.. Love their sav blancs
For pinots and chards..
Williams selyem
Arista
Gary Farrell
Hartford court
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#27 Post by Jeff VanDenbussche » August 13th, 2019, 1:30 pm

Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. I have added many of these to my list. Now the only problem is to narrow it down!

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#28 Post by Bud Carey » August 13th, 2019, 2:07 pm

Has anybody mentioned Seghesio???
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#29 Post by Sean Devaney » August 13th, 2019, 5:15 pm

Not Mentioned yet but hit up Joseph Swan and Woodenhead. In Healdsburg proper hit up Davis Family if and when you visit Holdredge right across the street. In the Dry Creek Valley hit up Frick for some rhones and Preston for nice wines and great bread.

Second Porter Creek. Rochioli is a nice stop but not sure what they will have available to taste.

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#30 Post by Tom Futey » August 14th, 2019, 10:03 am

Isn't Ramey nearby ?

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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#31 Post by Chris H. » August 14th, 2019, 10:42 am

I try to start the day out at A. Rafanelli (need to call ahead a reserve a time, but a favorite of mine going back years), then just down the road is Quivera, nice zins and whites. I'd also suggest Ridge, fun tasting, and many options, including a Monte Bello flight (last year it was 2006, 2007, 2014), but I am sure it changes often. I've not eaten in Healdburg, but we usually go to Catelli's or Diavola which are in Geyserville, and quite good.
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Re: Healdsburg winery and restaurant recommendations

#32 Post by dsimmons » August 14th, 2019, 11:55 am

Many great visits to be had in or around Healdsberg. Since you like Pinot and Chardonnay I would put a tasting at Ramey high on my list. It is right in Healdsberg. You will need to make a reservation.
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