Rock-N-Rollers and Foodies alike are so happy to visit B.R. Cohn Winery and St. Francis Winery. They are two very different properties and experiences. Each has an interesting history and perspective in Sonoma Valley.
St. Francis Winery & Vineyards is famous for its award-winning Wine & Food Pairings. There are hundreds of rave reviews to see online. Be surrounded by panoramic mountain views as you dine on seasonal dishes inspired by their sustainably cultivated wines and organic garden bounty. This is certainly more than cheese and crackers. It is a delectable pairing that complements each wine you taste. St. Francis is a “must see” when visiting the Sonoma Valley.
Besides being home to the annual Sonoma Harvest Music Festival, B.R. Cohn has roots set in rock and roll. Bruce Cohn purchased an old dairy farm in 1974, later known as Olive Hill Estates. He had grown up in Chicago and his family moved to the bay area when he was young. He became the manager for the Doobie Brothers and remained so for 45 years. Bruce sold grapes to other wineries before founding B.R. Cohn in 1984. People visit from all over the world to enjoy the wine, olive oil, vinegar and music. B.R. Cohn wines make the savory vinegars.
St. Francis Winery has a tour of the vineyards available. Or, you can do the self-guided tour. Learn about the life-cycle of the vine. Discover the differences between the many grape varietals. Did you know each has a unique leaf shape? B. R. Cohn Winery has eight blocks of vines, 55 acres, of property planted with Cabernet Sauvignon. Both wineries have several other varietals planted. You can see the rolling hills of vineyards from the B.R. Cohn tasting space.
The founder of St. Francis Winery is Joe Martin. In 1971 he planted 22 acres of Chardonnay and 60 of Merlot. This was the first time Merlot appeared in Sonoma Valley. He partnered with Lloyd Canton in 1979 by opening St. Francis.
The first winemaker was Tom Mackey, (1983). He expanded the wine program as they purchased more land. Today, Katie Madigan and Chris Louton are the winemaking team. The style of the wines are fruit-driven and all from Sonoma County grapes. Much of the vineyards are “Certified Sustainable” vineyards.
B.R. Cohn Winery is set in the rolling hills of Glen Ellen, within the Sonoma County wine country region. The winding driveway brings you to the historic farm house from 1920. Tastings and food pairings occur within the house or seated on the patio. The tasting room is open daily from 10 am to 5 pm. Enhance your tasting with a locally-sourced cheese plate.
B.R. Cohn’s Sonoma County Pinot Gris enlivens your brunch! Light and wonderful pairs with eggs, so well. The Silver Label North Sonoma Coast Cabernet Sauvignon wins medals and praise everywhere. The wine is a true expression of the weather, soil and sense of place that is Sonoma Coast.
St. Francis Winery has something for everyone. There are a number of white wines to choose from including Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and a tantalizing white blend. Besides Merlot, you can find Old Vine Zinfandels, Cabernet Franc, red blends and Cabernet Sauvignon all sourced from prime vineyards in Sonoma County. The wines are affordable and delicious. Cheers!
St. Francis Winery (888) 675-9463. 100 Pythian Road, Santa Rosa, CA 93000. Open daily from 10 am to 5 pm.