Wine Country Blog: Innsights to the Wine Country

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By Meghan Smith on January 16, 2016

The New Year is a time to reflect and look back on all the standout moments of the previous year. It’s also a time to look forward. Here at Farmhouse Inn in California Wine Country we are grateful for so many memories and events that we had to narrow down the list to our top 5. Find out why these 5 moments stood out to us and what we’re looking forward to in 2016.

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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Tripadvisor, Travel and Leisure, Farmhouse Inn, Napa, California, spa


By Meghan Smith on May 26, 2015

This week we've decided to delve into what feels like an appropriate topic of conversation considering the storms we’ve had this week. What do you do in Sonoma wine country when it happens to rain?  You’ve traveled from the East coast to escape the snowy weather and land in San Francisco only to find that you should have packed your rain coat, boots and umbrella. Rain happens- even in sunny California. The question is, how do you enjoy a wine country vacation when you can’t go far and the places you wanted to visit are impacted by weather? The answer varies depending on your interests; but we think a rainy day has the potential to be more enjoyable than you might think….

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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Russian River, Pinot Noir, Romantic, Farmhouse Inn, Healdsburg, restaurant, vacation, California, spa


By Meghan Smith on April 7, 2016

In Sonoma and Napa September and October have traditionally been the busiest months to visit, both in the vineyards and in the tasting rooms, restaurants and hotels. However, a new trend is on the rise in wine country: November is becoming a very popular time to visit too. November is what we usually refer to as a “shoulder” month – the time of transition between what is the busiest time of year and our more relaxed winter season. While this has been true for a while, we have noticed a change. November’s sunny brisk weather has been drawing an increasing number of visitors to wine country this month, as are the smaller crowds and beautiful fall colors. Even though harvest is over, there is plenty to do in wine country. If you’ve been looking for an excuse to come visit us here at Farmhouse Inn, let us help you: here are 4 reasons to visit wine country in November.


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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Holidays, Farmhouse Inn, Dungeness Crab, Napa, wine tasting, Romantic getaway


By Meilani Naranjo on April 7, 2016


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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Holidays, Farmhouse Inn, thanksgiving, Christmas, Dungeness Crab, special


By Meghan Smith on April 7, 2016

Sunshine, beaches, warm weather – for many, the classic image of California. While the warm weather and sunshine certainly epitomize California for the majority of the year, come November we enter what Californians refers to as “winter” (we freely admit that we’re weather wimps – if you dropped us in Chicago in December we wouldn’t know what to do with ourselves). As we leave October and our warm Indian summer behind us, we see the leaves fall to the ground and the creeks and river rise. Lower temperatures and rains are welcome – comfy sweaters, warm fires, hot cocoa and our favorite soups accompany the shift and are some of our favorite things. If you’ve been considering a trip to wine country but have been hesitating because of possible rain... have no fear; winter might indeed be the best time for a visit. We’ll take you through our three favorite things to do in wine country when it rains – the list may surprise you.

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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Farmhouse Inn, wine tasting, J Winery, Zip lining


By Meghan Smith on April 7, 2016

With so many activities available for visitors to the wine country, the Farmhouse Inn Concierges are a valuable resource for sorting through them all. The entire Farmhouse Inn concierge team lives, works, and plays in Sonoma County. Several of us have also previously worked at local wineries and restaurants. In addition to our professional experiences, we are continually out and about sampling the latest and greatest Sonoma has to offer. Our knowledge of the area makes one of your best resources in the wine country; we love to share our favorites with our guests.  Here is one of our favorite Napa-Sonoma itineraries. 


Your first day in Sonoma County you are headed to the Farmhouse Inn where you’ll be welcomed with a glass of local wine.  (Nice start, right?)  Unwind by the pool or enjoy a spa treatment in the farm-to-table spa. After you’ve enjoyed a luxurious steam shower and soak in the tub, it's time for a Michelin starred meal at the Farmhouse Inn Restaurant (just steps from your room). We recommend you try the Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit and the wine pairings personally chosen for you by our Sommelier. After a full day of travel you may not be inclined to have to drive somewhere for dinner. 


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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Russian River, concierge, Michelin Star, Farmhouse Inn, restaurant, Napa, activities, wine tasting


By Meghan Smith on April 7, 2016

As the new school year starts and summer comes to an end, the busy season in Sonoma wine country is just beginning.  Harvest kicked off early this year; however we’ll continue to see grapes come in for at least another month. Many people know this is the best time to visit; perfect weather and the energy of harvest is a huge attraction. As the harvest continues and we start to see the leaves change colors, wine country celebrates with  some of the best events, concerts, and festivals of the entire year. With everything from winemaker dinners to Kendall Jackson’s Heirloom Tomato Festival and the Russian River Jazz and Blues concerts – September is a great time to visit wine country. Leave the kids at home with the grandparents and come to Sonoma this fall….

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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Russian River, Farmhouse Inn, events, restaurant, Harvest


By Meghan Smith on April 7, 2016

Planning a long weekend (or more) in wine country? Interested in seeing what the grape harvest looks like? You’re not alone. Many  visitors to Sonoma and Napa during September and October come for a long weekend. While 3 days may seem like plenty of time in wine country, it really is  considered to be a quick visit. There is so much to do in Northern California that those 3 days will fly by quickly. Fear not: there is a team of experts on hand to help plan your visit so you won’t end up spending too much of your time in the car. The Farmhouse Inn concierge team can help plan your visit to Sonoma County. They have suggestions on everything from where to fly into, on where to dine and what activities are worth considering.

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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, Sonoma County, Farmhouse Inn, Healdsburg, events, restaurant, wine road, Napa, California, wine tasting


By Meghan Smith on April 7, 2016

Food and wine are our two favorite subjects … as you may have noticed if you follow this blog or are a fan of our Facebook page.  Located in the middle of the Russian River Valley, the Farmhouse Inn is in the heart of a culinary and viticulture epicenter. Every week we share our newest food and wine findings with our fans, but this week we'll reflect on the changes in food and wine culture through the influence of the media. (We're impressed with our thoughtfulness too.)

Movies and films have had an enormous impact on our local industry, and social media and magazines continue to reflect these changes. Everything from “Sideways” and “Top Chef” to Bon Appétit magazine and Instagram are changing the way we think and talk about food and wine. Three examples of the media’s influence are shifts in wine preferences, the increasing popularity of the local food movement and the way we make travel decisions.


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Topics: Sonoma, Pinot Noir, Farmhouse Inn, restaurant, dining, California, Russian River Valley, travel

Sonoma Secrets - New Discoveries in the Farmhouse Inn Backyard

By Meghan Smith on April 7, 2016

Living in wine country is never boring- we always find something to do, no matter the time of year or day of week. As we continue to explore our own backyard, it is a pleasure to share our newest discoveries with the Farmhouse Inn fans. Recent outings have taken us from Sebastopol’s Barlow over to Santa Rosa’s newest farm-to-table restaurant and up to Geyserville’s hidden gem, Garden Creek Vineyards.


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Topics: Sonoma, wine country, gardens, Farmhouse Inn, the Barlow, winery, dining, wine tasting

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