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“Excellent tour and experience”

Benziger Family Winery
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and up
Vine to Wine Napa and Sonoma Day Trip with Tastings and Organic Winery Tour
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and up
2-Day Muir Woods and Wine Country Tour from San Francisco
Ranked #2 of 29 things to do in Glen Ellen
Certificate of Excellence
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Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: At Benziger, we're about three things: family, great wine and healthy vineyards. For more than thirty years, we've farmed our ranch on Sonoma Mountain and searched Sonoma County for the most distinctive and expressive vineyards. Once found, we tend these sites using certified Biodynamic, organic and sustainable farming methods. The result is a portfolio of authentic and memorable wines. Our Partners Wine Tour will satisfy the palate of any wine enthusiast. This tour provides a behind-the-scenes look at our Biodynamic estate vineyard and wine caves and finishes with an exclusive wine tasting of estate wines.
Limerick, Pennsylvania
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Excellent tour and experience”
Reviewed 13 October 2013

I booked the Partners tour and reserve tasting. I was not disappointed. The tour is via a unique electric tram and is limited to 12 visitors to give a more intimate experience. The tour lasts approximately 90 minutes and includes a tasting of Benziger reserve wines.

The tour begins by going to see the crush pad. Cabernet Sauvignon had just arrived from the field and we were able to experience the entire crushing process. The bins were being emptied into the crusher destemmer so we could see the entire process. It was a very busy time so we stayed far enough away to observe what was going on and not be in the way of their operation.

Once we left the crushpad, we were taken through the vineyard where there biodynamic approach to winemaking was thoroughly explained. Benziger Vineyards is one of the only wineries in the world that practices biodynamics involving plants, birds, and beneficial insects. A very fascinating approach to keeping nature in check using natural techniques.

As we continued through the vineyard, we observed two brown cows and a new born calf who was having breakfast at the time. There were numberous flowers and Agave cactus scattered throughout the vineyard. The purpose being to attract the good insects who play a vital part in the sustainability of the vineyard. In the middle of the tour, we stopped at a small pavilion located in the vineyard where we sampled Sauvignon Blanc before heading down the hill to the wine caves, where we would have a private tasting of Benzigers reserve wines.

Upon entering the caves we were given an education on the barrels and how the caves were made. Once this was complete, we entered a private tasting room located in the cave. We tasted their Cabernet Sauvignon blend called Tribute, a reserve 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc. Upon completion of this portion of the tour we were escorted to the main tasting room, where we were given three samples of their regular wines.

I highly recommend this tour because it is much more than just a wine tasting. It is a education of the entire winemaking process which you will experience first hand.

Visited October 2013
Thank Vinoventures
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Winery you must stop by.”
Reviewed 9 October 2013 via mobile

Very nice place to visit and Do take the tour. Tasting room is big yet you get personal attention. Great wines, good prices with no pressure to buy. Went ahead and joined the family, became a wine club member.

Visited October 2013
Thank joe a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
61 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Fantastic Tour and Friendly People”
Reviewed 26 September 2013

- Gorgeous winery with very friendly owners and staff.

Our tour guide was knowledgeable, friendly and kept us intrigued. We rode in a tractor pulled open air tour car through the vineyard where we learned some spectacular facts about their biodynamic winery, which proved to be very interesting. We toured the winery during crush season and we were able to sample grapes straight from the vine. I can honestly say that the grapes we tried were the best I have EVER eaten. We continued to the HUGE underground wine caves which were very cool, figuratively and literally. From there, we went to the crushing floor which was busy, extremely clean,and it smelled great! Following that, the group proceeded to the tasting room where we were not rushed and had an enjoyable experience sampling the wine.

Visited September 2013
Thank Wayne G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sonoma, California
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“The BEST Tour and Explanation of Biodynamic Vineyards”
Reviewed 26 September 2013

I just held my 70th Birthday celebration at Benziger. We started with a tour thru the fascinating biodynamic vineyards where the entire system was explained and shown by the extremely knowledgable guide, Chris. Fascinating system involving the plants, the birds, the insects the rodents and their interactions that create a biodynamic vineyard. The explanation of the wine production was equally well done and especially exciting because crush was going on. The perfume of the grapes was everywhere. We then had catered hors d'ouerves in the tasting room where they poured all their estate wines (Joaquim Inferno was a huge hit!) Then a catered sit down dinner in the gorgeous medieval like cave. They do not do weddings but if you want a special event in Sonoma wine country this is the place to do it. Spectacular surroundings, very "green" environment, splendid wines, great staff, and all family owned and operated. I live in Sonoma and this is one of th very best!

Visited September 2013
Thank FranceAvignon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 5 Contributor
61 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Great family winery.”
Reviewed 25 September 2013

With the wine industry in Napa and Sonoma so consolidated into corporate giants it was a pleasure to visit the Benziger Family Winery in Glen Ellen, California. We hit it right at harvest time and enjoyed watching them begin the wine making process. We also had the pleasure of meeting Kathy Benziger the youngest of the Benzinger clan and a real fireball. You have to love a family business that is driven by the level of dedication and passion as the Benzigers. It's palpable and it rubs off on those who visit. The winery is a beautiful piece of property located in the shadow of Sonoma Mountain (a dormant volcano) and the Benziger approach to farming referred to as biodynamic is impressive. One of their Scottish cattle had a calf while we were there so they are quite diverse on the property. They have a very nice tasting room and their estate wines are very good. If you're in Sonoma/Glen Ellen stop in and see this well run agri-business.

Visited September 2013
Thank Michael N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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