On our last trip to Sonoma, one of my absolute must visits was to Bella Vineyards. I fell in love with Bella on our honeymoon and we joined their club at that time. However, when we bought our house, we had to make some sacrifices and I had to give up my membership. It was a difficult choice, and I was determined to rejoin as soon as we could.
We twisted Russ' arm to come to Bella with us on our last day in Sonoma (trust me, it didn't take too much convincing!) and off we went, to meet him as soon as the place opened. We expected it to be a slow day, since we were there first thing, and it was a weekday morning, but alas, that was not the case. The cave was packed! I think Bella gets specific accolades from Russ though, as it was the only winery we visited where Russ bought wine!
Somehow, we carved out a tiny spot for ourselves at the tasting bar, and eagerly jumped into the current line up of wines.
2006 Dry Creek Zinfandel: $25. Peppery smoke, blackberries, dark berries, smoky fruit, toast.
2005 Big River Ranch Zinfandel: $36. Bark berry, blueberry, peppery, vanilla, fruity, oak, cinnamon. Very good.
2006 Belle Canyon Zinfandel: Sweeter nose, floral, chocolate, chili pepper, tannic.
2005 Hillside Cuvee: $28. 50% Cabernet Sauvigon, 50% Zinfandel, some Petite Sirah, some Petite Verdot. Big fruit, dark, plum, bold fruit, currants, earth, tannic, a little red fruit. We took home 2 bottles.
2007 Late Harvest Zinfandel: $24. 375 mL. Chocolate milk, earth, plum, blackberry, very nice.
After a lovely visit, I am very happy to be a member of the Bella Wine Club again. We received our first shipment about a month ago and I look forward to many more in the future. If you haven't had a chance to taste Bella's wines, you should seek them or stop by the vineyard if you have a chance!