Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Zin and Bordeaux Varietals in the Alexander Valley

When I take guests on tours of the Alexander Valley in Sonoma County, one of my regular stops is Stryker Sonoma Winery. This small winery produces about 7,000 cases a year. However, winemaker Tim Hardin is a creative soul and likes to make small lots of wine. Thus, the 7,000 cases of wine are divided among approximately 22 red wines and 4 whites, with lots as small as 100 cases. One of Tim's specialties is wine from Bordeaux varietals, including a good number of Cabernet Sauvignons, a few Merlots, and small amounts of Petite Verdot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, and Semillon. Tim also loves Zinfandel, so he produces at least eight different wines from this varietal.

The winery is a sleek, modern building with floor to ceiling windows in the tasting room. Thus, you can gaze out at the vineyards while tasting Stryker's many wines. The tasting room staff are friendly and eager to tell you about Stryker's wines and the various wine regions from which Stryker sources its fruit.

The winery is located on Hwy. 128, north and west of the city of Healdsburg. The tasting room is open daily from 10:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. You may just drop in for tasting. Tours can be arranged by prior appointment. Stryker offers more than one tasting menu, so fees vary.

If you would like to take a private tour of the Alexander Valley that includes a stop at Stryker, please call me at (866) 326-4237 (toll free) or e-mail me by clicking here.

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