24 Delicious Hours in Sonoma

Sonoma valley

After more than forty years in business in beautiful Sonoma County, we’ve become experts in showing visitors a good time. Our favorite thing to do around here? That’s easy: Eat. The region may be primarily known for its world-class wines—and trust us, a tasting or two is a must for all visiting wine enthusiasts—but our dining scene is every bit as impressive. Here’s how we’d eat our way through a day in Sonoma.

A Luxurious Start To The Day

A special day should start with a gorgeous breakfast—especially if you plan to taste your way through wine country. Before you head out to explore the rolling hills and valleys of Sonoma county, stop by the historic Sonoma Plaza for a great meal.

Sunflower Caffè showcases fresh, local California cuisine for breakfast and brunch. (We recommend the seasonal asparagus and leek scramble, which features Laura Chenel goat cheese.) For another great option, check out the girl & the fig. This all-day bistro serves cheese and charcuterie plates, seafood, steak frites, duck confit, and great salads—like the fig & arugula salad with pancetta, fig vinaigrette, and Laura Chenel chèvre. And if you’d rather get to the winery early, we love Gloria Ferrer in Carneros: Sonoma’s first sparkling winery offers a range of tasting menus, including weekend brunch.

Can’t-Miss Wineries

Any trip to Sonoma is incomplete without at least one wine tasting—that much is obvious. But with so many world-class wineries to choose from, how are you supposed to narrow your options down? We’re more than happy to help. Gundlach Bundschu and Viansa are two of our favorite family-owned wine producers in the region, with generations of experience behind each bottle. Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery is another stellar option in Sonoma—be sure to check out their Friday night summer music series for a great evening of entertainment.

Reinvigorate With An Afternoon Snack

If your wine tour through Sonoma ends a little before proper dinner time, a little snack is definitely in order. We love Basque Boulangerie, a local bakery with full breakfast and lunch menus, plus an excellent selection of pastries. Grab a coffee and a selection from the pastry case for the perfect afternoon pick-me-up.

A choose-your-own adventure picnic is also a great option, especially when the weather is gorgeous. Stop by Sonoma Market and fill up your picnic basket with fresh produce, charcuterie, bread, and Laura Chenel chèvre, then head to any of the area’s many gorgeous picnic spots.

End Your Day With a Leisurely Dinner

As the sun sets and the air cools down a little, your thoughts will naturally turn to dinner. If you’re craving tacos, El Molino Central is a great choice for a casual bite. For an intimate and elegant meal, try LaSalette’s seaonal, Portuguese-inspired offerings. For a larger (or pickier!) group, Sonoma’s beloved Tuesday Night Market is definitely the way to go. Every Tuesday night from May to October, the Sonoma Plaza transforms into a vibrant night market. Part farmer’s market and part block party, the Tuesday night market has something for everyone: Fresh produce from local vendors, live music, wine, beer, and of course, plenty of delicious dinner options from a wide range of food stands.

Don’t Forget Dessert!

After dinner, it’s time to end the day with the perfect sweet treat. Ice cream fans should definitely stop by Sweet Scoops Homemade Ice Cream for a cone, sundae, or milkshake. For the chocolate lovers, The Chocolate Cow is a must—although fair warning, you may have a hard time choosing from all the amazing chocolate creations!