The smell of spring swirls around the newly-opened Terrace at Rodney Strong Winery — rows of grapevines, freshly-mowed grass, and a bright pink rosé of pinot noir in the glass. Breathe deeply, then pinch yourself, because you’ve found your new Happy Place.
More than a tasting room, this intimate outdoor patio features the perfect lazy-afternoon sip and nibble experience with five luxe bites paired with five Rodney Strong wines.
Kick back under the cheery orange umbrellas, survey the expansive vineyards before you and let yourself be pampered with a plate of local cheeses or charcuterie with perfectly paired wines, or go all in for the chef-created five course pairing that (on our warm spring afternoon it included Dungeness crab and short rib bao) with several reserve wines (we fell hard for the 2012 Reserve Chardonnay).
Chef Tara Wachtel heads up the kitchen (Adafina Culinary, Zazu Restaurant + Farm), making this a tasting worth going out of your way for. Well, that and the view.
Terrace at Rodney Strong Winery: Five course tasting, $55; cheese plate for two, $25, cheese and charcuterie, $35. Reservations recommended, but not required. Open Friday through Sunday from 11am to 4pm, 11455 Old Redwood Hwy, Healdsburg, (707) 431-1533.
Oh, and by the way, don’t miss the Meyer lemon marmalade with the cheese plate and strawberry rhubarb jam.