We enjoy showing visitors how we make wine and olive oil! Due to our secluded spot and small size, however, we only offer tours and sales by prior appointment. Simply contact us to set up a specific day and time. Although we can occasionally accommodate requests on short notice, please call or email us at least 24 hours in advance to ensure we'll be available at your preferred time.
First things first
If you haven't already, contact us to make an appointment or RSVP for an event. For an individual appointment, we might suggest visiting in the late morning, perhaps at 11am, so that your taste buds are not yet fatigued. During the summer, when the weather can get hot, morning is also the best time for a vineyard walk. Plan to spend an hour or so with us, depending on your level of interest in grapegrowing, winemaking, and olive oil making.
After confirming the appointment, we will email you directions because Montemaggiore is not easy to find (GPS and on-line mapping systems will lead you astray). If you are interesting in hearing about the experiences that others have had on their visit, check out Yelp.
Visiting other wineries
Being at the crossroads of three major winegrowing valleys, the Healdsburg area has so many great wineries that it's really hard to give general recommendations. Depending on what you are looking for, here are some of the many excellent choices:
- Off the beaten path:
Viszlay (all require appointments so please call ahead)
- Close to Montemaggiore:
- Biodynamic and Organic:
Truett-Hurst, and others on The Green Trail of Dry Creek Valley (map).
- Dry Creek Valley Classics:
- Syrah and other Rhône varietals:
Pasterick (by appointment only),
- Pinot Noir:
MacPhail (by appointment only),
Finding a great place to stay
Healdsburg and the Sonoma County area have many wonderful options for places to stay:
- Luxurious, boutique hotels: Hotel Healdsburg and Les Mars Hotel are right in the heart of Healdsburg. Both are fabulous hotels focused on customer service, perhaps the most obvious difference being that the Hotel Healdsburg has a sleek modern look, whereas Les Mars has a distinctive European feel.
- Environmentally-friendly hotel: The newest hotel in town, h2hotel, was designed with an eco-consciousness and the latest in environmental technology.
- Bed & Breakfasts: there are too many to recommend, so just check out the Healdsburg Chamber website or an on-line Bed and Breakfast site.
- Just a clean place to sleep: Best Western Dry Creek Inn.
- House rentals: For families, groups of friends, or several couples, many gorgeous houses can be rented, including the house right next to our property. Check out www.vrbo.com and search for "Casa Privata". For local listings, check out rentals by Healdsburg Property Management.
- Chain hotels where you can use (or generate) points: Santa Rosa has two Hiltons (one closer to downtown and one closer to the airport), a Hyatt, and a Marriott.
Eating Well in Sonoma County
While your best bet is to check out restaurant reviews on other websites, here are a few of our favorites to get you started.
Alternate forms of transportation
You may want to hire a car and driver so that you can fully enjoy the bounties of wine country. Or perhaps you'd prefer to enjoy the landscape from a bicycle seat along the famous Dry Creek Valley Loop.
- Limousines: Beau Wine Tours, Platypus Tours, and Behind the Gates come highly recommended by our customers.
- Bicycles: Dry Creek Road and West Dry Creek Road comprise a wonderful looped bicycle route. Spoke Folk Cyclery provides bicycle rentals, including tandems. One reminder is that Montemaggiore means "Great Mountain" in Italian—thus visiting us on a bicycle means that the last mile is uphill all the way!
- Walking: The best way to understand wine is to walk the vineyards, and Sonoma Vineyard Walks can lead the way!
Entertainment for the entire family
At Montemaggiore, we pride ourselves as being family-friendly. Our ten-year-old son Paolo has a toy box at the winery to keep little ones entertained, and here are a few more suggestions.
- Tide Pooling: Our favorite beach on the Sonoma Coast is Shell Beach. You'll want to check out the tides at Jenner, because tidepools are best at low tide.
- Animal Viewing: Safari West has giraffes, ostriches, zebras, cheetahs, lemurs, and all the animals children of all ages love!
- Museuming: In northern Santa Rosa, the Charles Schultz Museum focuses on Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the Gang. It's much more adult-friendly than you might think.
- River Boating: Kayaking and canoeing on the Russian River are great fun for the family. Rentals can be had from River's Edge, Russian River Adventures, and Burke's Canoe Trips.
- Vineyard Walking: The best way to appreciate Wine County is to walk the vineyard and Sonoma Vineyard Walks can lead the way!
- Ziplining: For the biggest thrills, try soaring through old-growth Redwoods on seven ziplines with Sonoma Canopy Tours (minimum age: 10).
Last things come last!
Before you visit us, you may want to check out the weather at Montemaggiore including the forecast for Healdsburg. And don't forget the directions we emailed you upon appointment confirmation because Montemaggiore is not properly found by GPS or on-line mapping systems.
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