Another "free" breakfast at the Hampton Inn and it was time to check out and head up the road to Sonoma. We got to drive over the Golden Gate Bridge AGAIN! I don't know if that could ever get old! The drive to Sonoma was beautiful and we could tell the next few days were going to be amazing. The weather has been phenomenal. We arrived in Sonoma and found our hotel, The Sonoma Hotel.
Our room wasn't ready yet since we arrived pretty early, so we decided to start walking around The Plaza. We found a little place called Sunflower Caffe and both enjoyed a Cafe Mocha. So tasty! We finished up and continued walking around The Plaza. We found the Visitor's Center and got some information about where to go for tastings and tours. We left with our info and kept walking. We found The Sonoma Cheese Factory. They were doing a tasting so we went in and had 2 tastes each and got to keep the glasses. this was a good thing since we knew we would be buying a bottle or two and would need something to drink it out of! After buying some original Jack cheese and some crackers, we headed back to see if our room was ready, and it was! We grabbed our bags and headed upstairs to Room 23. The hotel is so cute. Our room has a queen size bed, an overstuffed chair, a beautiful armoire, a really old dresser and mirror, an old desk and chair and two bedside tables with rustic lamps.
Our room overlooks The Plaza and is right above the hotel restaurant called The Girl and The Fig. After getting settled, we decided to hit The Plaza for some wine tastings. Our first stop was Castle Vineyards and Winery. It is situated right next to our hotel. It is a family run winery. We tasted about 8 different wines and bought a bottle of 2003 Syrah from Sonoma Valley.
Susan, the customer service and wine club manager, gave us two 2 for 1 tastings at two of the other wineries on The Plaza, so we ran our bottle of wine up to our room and found our next tasting spot, Charles Creek. This was a very informative visit. We learned things like the difference between nose and bouquet, and Bordeauz style and Meritage. We even got our tastings for free since we were on our honeymoon! We took a break from tasting and decided to find some food. We ended up at Mary's Pizza Shack. We had bread sticks and shared a Napoletana Pizza which was a white pizza with tomatoes. DELICIOUS! We finished up there and moved the car closer to the hotel on the street that allowed overnight parking. We kept walking around The Plaza and came across a wine bar. A man who was walking in told us we needed to go in! We are SO happy we did. The place was called Enoteca Della Santina which translates to Next Door to Della Santina.
Della Santina is a restaurant owned by the same people. They decided to open a wine bar to house the overflow of folks waiting to get in at Della Santina's. Great idea! The bar had only been open for 3 weeks. I enjoyed a glass of Pinot Grigio and Lee had his first glass of Cabarnet Franc since being in CA. One of the women working there was Alexandria and she ended up talking to us the whole time we were there. It was great to have such awesome conversation. After leaving there it was suggested to us to go right next door to Della Santina's for dinner. We had the nicest waiter and great food. I had a glass of Pinot Grigio and Lee had a glass of Syrah. I ate the Linguine Pesto and Lee had the T-bone special. Wonderful dinner! I had a cappuccino, Lee had a coffee and we shared a chocolate gelato....mmmmmm. We were both in a food/wine coma, so it was time to head to the room for a good night sleep!