Majestic Alexander Valley’s Field Stone Winery was my desired destination en route from Calistoga to Healdsburg off Highway 128 in northern Sonoma County. Barely visible from the road the partial subterranean cellars of Field Stone Winery rose slightly under the towering oak trees.
Winemaker Pat Murray greeted me in the tasting room, instantly making me feel at ease. We had a San Diego-Sonoma connection – one of my local haunts, the La Costa Wine Company in Carlsbad, frequently hosts Field Stone Winery wine tastings so I just had to experience Field Stone Winery firsthand.
Alexander Valley is home to some heady red varietals — Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Sirah and Syrah, to name a few. For me, Field Stone Winery’s 2010 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon was the epitome of a great Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon! Rich, fruit forward, aromatic, bursting with Bing Cherry, ripe plum and blackberry with a slight hint of vanilla and french oak. Ahhhhh….it doesn’t get much better than this!
Field Stone Winery‘s Petit Sirah vineyards are over 100 years old –a small production block, but a grand old survivor dating back to the the Prohibition era. I felt honored to taste the 2010 Staten Family Reserve Petit Sirah, rated 94+ points by Robert Parker. Blended with an undisclosed amount of Viognier to soften the tannins, this Petit Sirah was a superb wine with a light floral nose and luscious blueberry and blackberry fruit.
The pristine Field Stone Winery vineyards stretch as far as the eye can see in any one direction. Hawks soar high above the vineyards. If you listen carefully, you can hear the soft sound of the drip irrigation slowly feeding the thirsty vines. The water droplets shone like diamonds in the late afternoon sun. Not to sound cliche, but it was an easy, peaceful feeling, a bit desolate, yet comforting in a familiar way. I was in no hurry to leave.
Field Stone Winery will definitely be on my list of stops along the Sonoma wine trail again. www.fieldstonewinery.com