Author: Mike Madigan
If you want to come to wine country here in northern California, and aren’t in the mood to do any tasting, then I have an idea: How ‘bout a nice drive? I’d start in Napa, frankly, along the Silverado trail then up to Howell Mountain, where you can appreciate unforeseen views and thick stretches of trees and wild dimensions; the encompassing forest and windy roads, removed from any noise or commotion.
And if you’re on the Sonoma side of things, take a relieving cruise through Dry Creek Valley, on Healdsburg’s west side, seeing all the enveloping vineyards and nearly inescapable wine elements and visuals around you, coupled with richly green hills and the freeness of that quiet air... And with that all-too-familiar Healdsburg charm, you’ll more than likely see people waving, urging you to enjoy your drive, whether you plan on stopping to taste or not.
Then, unfortunately underrated, Anderson Valley, up in the decidedly divine Mendocino County. A provocative traverse about Highway 128, you’ll forget about everything, moderate speed and the atmospheric and visual consistency you expect from any wine getaway, drive. You can just humanly cruise. Anderson Valley shows us that’s there’s more than just the mainstream expectedness in a drive, be you new or seasoned to wine country. You feel a certain centeredness driving though this wined zone, that you wouldn’t in others.
But no matter where you drive, you’l find that air, that feel, that consistency you look for in a wine but with your drive, your cruise, it’s in the revolving feel of everything. And one more suggestion, the Kenwood cruise as I call it, through Sonoma Valley, then take a right on Madrone, left on Arnold, and you’re released to wine’s aorta, all the way to the Carneros region and wherever else. Okay.. this is my most preferred cruise as you might tell, but there’s something out there for everyone, honestly. Just get in your car, and let the Self go. See where the Road takes you. The Road is Life, and it can only make your day better. Sometimes that’s what you need, a nice fly down one of the wine world’s highways.
Cheers, and drive safe.....