Sojourn Cellars in Sonoma has a wine for every tastebud

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Inside Sojourn Cellars tasting salon located just off the Sonoma Plaza in what was once a bungalow home, the vibe is elegant, but not stuffy, just like the wine.

Sojourn’s flagship wine is pinot noir – they make 10, eight of which are made from single-vineyard grapes, each with its own expression and style. One, the Rodgers Creek Vineyard, Sonoma Coast, has a bit of earthy characteristics and bright red fruits. The Sangiacomo Vineyard, Sonoma Coast, is a medium bodied, warmer tone with fruit flavors of dark cherry and ripe strawberry. The Gap’s Crown Vineyard, Sonoma Coast, is richer than the previous two with some hints of cola. There are also five chardonnays and five cabernet sauvignons, each with its own distinctive flavor profile and aromas, but it was pinot noir that got the label started.

A shared love of tennis and wine brought together co-founders Craig Haserot and Erich Bradley. Their partnership – Haserot manages the business side of things and Bradley is the winemaker — started with making a small lot of wine, just 100 bottles. It turned out so good they agreed to try again. Really good again, and others – like wine reviewers – were agreeing and they knew they were on to something exceptional.

Bradley’s style of winemaking is to get out of the way and let the vineyard and grapes shine on their own. His wines – he also makes the wine for Repris and Pangloss Cellars – are known for a silky mouthfeel, balance, good acidity for food pairing or enjoying on their own.

Haserot and Bradley have developed strong relationships with the vineyard owners where they purchase their grapes. Signature names such as Sangiacomo, Gap’s Crown, Durrell, and Rodgers Creek, to name a few, work with the pair to coax Sojourn’s section of their vineyards to the quality Sojourn demands. They work with 21 different vineyards – some on handshake deals – throughout mostly Sonoma, and a little in Napa Valley.

Samples of the soils from the vineyards in glass jars on shelves in the tasting salon are not only decorative, they are educational. Open one and take a whiff, reach in and feel the volcanic rocks, and one gets a sense of the terroir.

Buy the wines while you are there at the tasting room and get on the mailing list because these wines aren’t going on any grocery store shelf. Tastings are $35 per person, by appointment only, and can be scheduled through the winery’s website at SojournCellars.com.

Contact Anne at anne.ernst@sonomanews.com.

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