Tucked away in the mountainous region of Santa Rosa, Pride Mountain Vineyards (with its Lion King-esque name) is a serene wine country escape — a day here involves amazing wines, underground wine cave tours, a fascinating historical look at how the winery came to be, and gorgeous panoramic views of the entire vineyard and Mount St. Helena in the distance.
As we drove up the winding road to the winery, the question of how acres of vineyards could possibly be sitting at the top of this summit was posed multiple times. The drive itself is surprisingly tedious and the twisting roads seemingly never stop (hence the souvenirs reading “I survived the ride to Pride" at the winery gift shop). The 235-acre estate sits atop the Mayacamas Mountain Range making for a secluded gem of a wine country destination.
The tour is about an hour long and takes you through the wine caves (my absolute favorite part of the whole day) and gives you a full rundown on how the winery operates along with tastings throughout the caves. Fun fact: the winery is bisected by the county line dividing Sonoma and Napa therefore requiring designation on each wine label of how much Sonoma county versus Napa county grapes comprise each wine.
Pride Mountain Vineyards is still a family-run business, and it relies solely on word-of-mouth as their advertising. A main reason why I liked Pride Mountain so much is that with the tour you get a glimpse into the wine-making process which is truly a science — there are so many technicalities and minute details that one would not expect in this process (my thought process: crush the grapes, let 'em sit, bottle it, and drink— so utterly wrong).
+Tours are by appointment only so be sure to book yours at least a week or two in advance. Ask for Paul as your tour guide — super funny and extremely knowledgable!
+Bring a picnic lunch, purchase a bottle of wine, and eat on the picnic benches overlooking the vineyards.
+Drink, learn, and soak up the Santa Rosa sunshine!
Pride Mountain Vineyards: 3000 Summit Trail, Santa Rosa, CA 95404