We started our morning at J Vineyards, and were first amazed by the beautiful fountains and gardens. The winery was founded and is owned by a woman, and I think her feminine touch is evident everywhere in the winery. The wines and the winery are classy and sophisticated, but not pretentious. I loved it, and if you are planning a trip to Sonoma, I would definitely add J Vineyards to your list. It is right next to Rodney Strong so you could visit both in the same morning or afternoon.
J Vineyards has an elegant tasting lounge overlooking the sparkling bottling room, so we were able to enjoy the wines and sparkling while watching the bottling process. They also have a bubble room with food and wine pairings that sounds like an amazing experience – and one we want to try next year! We have already decided to make a trip to Wine Country an annual vacation.
Making sparkling is an interesting process. The wine is juiced, and then ferments in the bottle for a long time (like 18 months to 6 years). Then, they go through the riddling process, which turns the bottle to move the sediment to the top of the bottle. Here are the riddling machine that turn the bottles:
And of course, wines and bubbly: