Looking for new and exciting ways to discover the best of Sonoma Valley’s drinking culture? There are so many options that it can be difficult to choose. Here’s a trio we’re loving right now, including a new pinot noir tasting room with its own aroma bar, a distillery specializing in organic vodka and cocktails, and a stylish downtown bubbly bar serving cheese plates, caviar and Champagne gummies.
Hanson of Sonoma Distillery
Prepare to be impressed, vodka fans. The Hanson family has opened a tasting room for their 5-year-old distillery that’s every bit as elegant and approachable as their naturally-infused vodkas. Yes, the staff makes cocktails — and they’re fabulous.
Step up to the marble-topped bar or sink into a sofa for tastings of seven hand-crafted organic vodkas: original, cucumber, ginger, habanero, mandarin and seasonal boysenberry and espresso. Hanson uses whole ingredients — no powders or syrups here. That zippy (and award-winning) habanero is made with seven varieties of hand-chopped organic peppers; the cucumber, with hundreds of organic California cucumbers soaked in vodka for seven to 12 months.
The only difficult part is choosing which tasting to do. You can taste six Hanson expressions ($15), for example, or three expressions and a craft cocktail with your favorite vodka ($20), or do vodka martinis and caviar pairings ($90). All the spirits are impossibly clean and smooth. Happy sipping.
Details: Open daily from 11 a.m. at 22985 Burndale Road, Sonoma; https://hansonofsonoma.com