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“Affordable” Housing in Sonoma County? Yes!

Posted on September 15, 2020 by Admin

Sticker shock was in full force when I moved from Northern Colorado to Northern California in 2016. In Colorado, $350,000 could get you a modest three bedroom, two bath rancher along the Front Range. In Sonoma County wine country? Not so much.

I had about $80,000 as a down payment and a new job and after adjusting to the new market metrics, I began to get acclimated to my environs and the crazy California housing market. I was renting a downtown Santa Rosa apartment for about $2200 a month…..renting. It was driving me crazy because who wants to throw away that much money every month towards something you don’t own and that pays someone else’s mortgage? For the past twenty years I had owned my own home and I knew the value of owning rather than renting. In addition to having your investment appreciate in dollars, there is also the psychological value of knowing that you are in charge of where you live (meaning, no landlord to raise the rent or end your lease or decide to sell).

After getting my ducks in a row and working with a good realtor, I discovered an established town home complex called Courtyards East in Windsor and fell in love. The complex is mostly owner-occupied and surrounded by heirloom oaks and mature Redwoods and maples. Located near the 101 highway it also made for easy commuting. Once I discovered all the nearby hiking trails, I really fell in love and felt like I had stumbled upon a secret that not many others seemed to know about. And the town of Windsor is so quaint and cool–Oliver’s Market, Russian River Brewing Company, and weekly town green concerts in the summer (pre-COVID). And there are so many other great places nearby….world-renowned Calistoga is a mere 30 minutes around the corner, and the  same for funky Russian River towns like Guerneville and Monte Rio with the coast just a few minutes further. And don’t forget Santa Rosa and all its conveniences is a short drive down the highway, with Healdsburg only five miles north and always a draw for wine tasting, shopping and dining.

Three years have passed since I got my foot firmly lodged in the Sonoma County real estate market and it’s time to let someone else do the same and take advantage of “affordable” housing in Sonoma County. My beautiful town home, which holds so many great memories, is now available as I transition into a new life in a new home with a great guy (soon to be my husband). If you are done with renting and want a home under $400,000, and want to take advantage of today’s crazy-low mortgage rates, come take a look at my place at 216 Courtyards East in Windsor. You’ll be glad you did!

Guide To Mendocino Wine Country

Posted on January 09, 2019 by Admin

Mendocino County is quickly becoming one of California’s top wine destinations. Featuring the famed Anderson Valley and highly acclaimed Pinot Noir wines, Mendocino is a beautiful mix of charming small towns and rugged nature.

Mendocino seems to have more than its share of natural beauty— the county is expansive, with many diverse regions, ranging from the expansive coast to the warm interior valleys. Defined by soaring redwoods, flowing rivers, an expansive coastline and, of course, lush vineyards, this county will not disappoint.

If you want to make a part of Mendocino County your own, check out our great listings in the area:

Take some time out in Mendocino and be sure to check out the following vineyards and resources as you plan your visit.

Balo Winery and Estate—This ultra-premium winery is located in the in the heart of Anderson Valley—far enough from the city to experience quiet country charm, yet close to the comforts and modern conveniences of town to attract plenty of wine enthusiasts.

Yorkville Highlands Vineyards—These vineyards represent approximately 30% of the entire Yorkville Highlands Viticulture Area. The property is comprised of eight parcels and offers numerous estate-building sites with spectacular views.

Talmage Vineyards—103± acres of premium vineyards in Mendocino County. This property includes 2 homes, an irrigation pond, plus barns and staging area’s developed for amazing events.

Towns and Regions

Check out this guide from VisitMendocino.com to you wrap your head around the various parts of the county. Explore the website to find a ton of useful articles and event listings as well.

“Mendocino County is not so much a place as a state of mind. Spectacular scenery, a sense of isolation, an aesthetic sensibility, and a strong sense of community are the standout highlights of a trip to Mendocino County.” READ MORE


Appellations

This article is a good overview of the various appellations in Mendocino County. In it you will find descriptions of the AVA’s and which notable producers call them home.

“The overarching “Mendocino County” appellation is home to a total of eleven American Viticultural Areas (AVAs).

One of them is named, simply, “Mendocino AVA” which largely nests together six smaller AVAs that you may be familiar with (Anderson Valley, Yorkville Highlands, McDowell Valley, Potter Valley, Redwood Valley, and America’s smallest AVA, Cole Ranch).

In addition, “Mendocino County” appellation also encompasses “Dos Rios” AVA, “Covelo” AVA, and “Mendocino Ridge” AVA.” READ MORE

 

This article from GuildSomm describes both the history of wine in Mendocino, as well as a detailed descriptions of the various AVA’s and their exceptional features.

Mendocino is a county with two faces. One face, the softer side, is well known. This is the coastal half that contains Anderson Valley, where delicate Pinot Noir and exceptional sparkling wines are enjoying increasing, and deserving, renown. The other face of Mendocino resides further east, in the cache of old vines that sprawl across the Redwood Valley appellation and surround the towns of Ukiah, Talmage, and Hopland. Here the vines have long labored without fanfare, their fruit blended into anonymity across county lines. But a growing number of vintners, both local and ex-county, are waking up to the remarkable quality contained within these venerable vineyards, and more attention is sure to follow. As exciting as the lacy creations of the coast may be, it’s time to turn our backs to the sea and our eyes toward the remarkably preserved historic legacy of inland Mendocino.” READ MORE

 

*map courtesy of mendowine.com

New Listing! Winner’s Circle Estate & Vineyard

Posted on June 27, 2018 by Admin

Spectacular Estate Home with Winery & Hospitality Potential


Asking price:
$12,950,000
Acreage: 60± Acres
Vineyard: Organic vineyards featuring 19.1± acres of Pinot Noir and 5.5± acres of Chardonnay recently planted to highest standards.

Winner’s Circle is a premier estate in the heart of the Russian River Valley. This 7,500± sq. ft. luxury home in Sebastopol embodies California contemporary design, and features panoramic mountain and valley views from every window.  A guest house, caretaker’s unit, and barn add value and interest to the property. Featuring 24.6± acres of organic Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vineyards plus a potential rental income through Inspirato, this is an incredible opportunity for the luxury home buyer and/or vineyard investor. 

The Main Residence was designed by architects Gerald C. Taylor of San Francisco and Val Arnold of Beverly Hills for the Walter family. Constructed in 1991 and renovated in 2013, the 7500± sq. ft. home has four bedrooms, four and a half bathrooms, a large gourmet kitchen, a butler’s pantry, and expansive common areas. Floor to ceiling glass doors in every room open onto extensive patios. A heated pool and spa invite you outdoors to enjoy the beautiful Russian River weather. 

Winner’s Circle is located just one hour North of San Francisco in the heart of West Sonoma County Wine Country. Situated between  Healdsburg and Sebastopol,  the area offers great dining, shopping & a welcoming community. This part of the Russian River Valley has long been established as a premier region for producing exceptional Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Many award-winning wineries are minutes away from this iconic location.

People move to Sonoma County from all around the world to enjoy the beautiful, mild climate. Located just 10 miles away (as the crow flies) from the Pacific Ocean, the weather is characterized by morning fog, warm days and pleasant evenings. The warm, dry summers and temperate winters encourage outdoor pursuits and allow farmers to grow amazing produce year-round. There are endless opportunities to explore premier Sonoma and Napa wineries and restaurants. Outdoor enthusiasts are blessed with 50+ regional and state parks that showcase coastal tide pools, old-growth redwoods and mountain views.

Located on Vine Hill Ridge in the Russian River American Viticultural Area (AVA), Winner’s circle located in the heart of West Sonoma County. Situated in between Healdsburg and Sebastopol, the AVA features the best known and most loved varietals. Home to the top Pinot Noirs, Chardonnays and old vine Zinfandels, this cool climate grape region supplies world renowned wineries in Sonoma and Napa counties, creating award winning wines that are some of the world’s best. 

The Russian River AVA has raised the standard for California grape production and winemaking.  The relatively cool summer encourages the grapes to ripen slowly, establishing balanced acidity.  This slow, prolonged ripening period creates the delicious flavors distinctive to this region. The soils offer perfect drainage and ideal conditions for growing grapes.  

Additional Property Features:

The guest house shares the entry courtyard with the main residence.  The unit is accessible from the main residence via a  short covered walkway.  The generous one bedroom boasts stunning views and an open floor plan. 

  • 900± sq. ft.
  • Located adjacent to the main house – just a short walk down a covered sidewalk connecting the two buildings.
  • 1 Bedroom/1 Bathroom
  • Living room with queen-size pullout sleeper sofa
  • Kitchen
  • Garage/Storage

Located on the smaller of the two parcels, the caretaker’s unit has two bedrooms and one bathroom.  A horse barn featuring six stables and an open interior also shares this second parcel.  The barn currently houses the irigation equipment for the vineyards. Situated adjacent to the barn is an equine aqua-tred.  This beautiful rustic building was originally built for the first-class thoroughbred ranch that was established here by the original owners, Barbara and Robert Walters.  The Walter’s best known gelding,1996 Kentucky Derby Runner-up Cavonnier, was foaled here at Winner’s Circle in1993. 

  • 35± Acres of oak woodlands 
  • Caretaker’s unit (2Bed/1Bath)
  • Barn with seven stables and irrigation pump room
  • Pump House
  • Horse Aqua Tread

Winery and Hospitality Potential

  • 2 Parcels: 55-acre parcel zoned DA D6-40; 6 acres zoned RA D6-10
  • Potential for main residence conversion to hospitality/wine-tasting/guest facility
  • Potential Winery/Tasting Room site

For more information, contact Mark at 707.322.2000 or Jeannie at 707.480.1541.

 

Wine Feature: Pinot Noir

Posted on June 26, 2018 by Admin

Our corner of Northern California is responsible for some of the best Pinot Noirs in the world. Pinot Noir grapes thrive in the low fertility soils and Mediterranean climates in several of our local AVAs, including Russian River Valley and Anderson Valley. Winemakers in the area use these world-class grapes to produce many outstanding wines including Pinot Noir, sparkling wines, white Pinot Noir, and Rosé.

About Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir is usually a light red still wine. People unfamiliar with this varietal may expect the lighter color will mean less flavor, yet the full and complex flavors will leave them surprised. The flavor profile can shift as it ages — what starts out as tart red fruit mellows out over time. Pinot Noir can be paired with many different foods; it is light enough to be served with fish and can also highlight heartier food like grilled meat.

Russian River Valley AVA
The Russian River Valley is a highly sought after appellation for growing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes. This AVA is made up of 15,000 planted acres situated in the geographical heart of Sonoma County. Located just 10 miles away from the Pacific Ocean, the weather is characterized by morning fog, warm days and pleasant evenings. The relatively cool weather encourages grapes to ripen slowly, establishing balanced acidity and a distinctive flavor profile.

Anderson Valley AVA
Pinot Noir thrives in the unique cool weather microclimates of Anderson Valley. A number of wineries in this region produce world-class sparkling and still wines; and several ultra-premium wine growers sell their sought-after grapes to winemakers in Napa, Sonoma and elsewhere in the USA.

While summer days are long and dry, with temperatures occasionally topping 85 degrees, a cooling fog rolls down the valley most evenings, slowing the vines’ metabolic activity. This daily Pacific Coast influence is responsible for a long growing season, which allows the grapes to ripen evenly and develop elegant flavors.

 

Check out two of our properties that will bring you to the heart of these premier Pinot Noir regions.

Wild Iris at Tumbling McD Ranch

 

Winner’s Circle Estate

Wild Iris Retreat Open House this Saturday 11-4pm

Posted on May 17, 2018 by Admin

 

Wild Iris Retreat in Anderson Valley 

OPEN HOUSE

Date: Saturday, May 19th
Time: 11Am – 5PM
20500 Tumbling MdD Road
Philo, CA 95466

Do you love Anderson Valley? Join us at our open house this Saturday, May 19th from 11am – 5pm at Wild Iris Retreat — just 11 miles away from the Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival happening all weekend long! Stop by for gourmet snacks, jeep tours and an inside view into one of the most enchanting properties to hit the market this year. Wild Iris Retreat is an exquisite 300+ acre property bordering the Navarro river with plenty of sunshine and shaded groves of towering redwoods. Featuring a large main house, two guest houses, a 90K gallon pool, a beautiful stone spa, and a dance hall, this is an opportunity you won’t want to miss!

 


Learn More About Wild Iris Retreat: CLICK HERE

 

 

 

21st Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival & Exclusive Property Tours at Wild Iris Retreat

Posted on May 15, 2018 by Admin

Anderson Valley Pinot Noir Festival

Celebrating One Varietal – One Appellation

Anderson Valley is hosting a world-class wine festival featuring Pinot Noir from over 50 local producers. The Pinot Noir Festival is a weekend full of wine, live music, farm fresh gastronomes and local art.

WHEN: May 18-20, 2018
WHERECamp Navarro in Navarro, CA — 11 miles from Philo and 17 miles from Boonville in Mendocino County
WHAT: Three full days of Pinot Noir paired with delicious food, music & celebration.

Tickets are on sale now, so don’t miss your chance to savor world renowned Pinot Noirs and meet the winemakers!

– Attend the Grand Tasting on Saturday only — Purchase Tickets HERE
– Purchase Tickets for all 3 days HERE

To learn more details about all of the events, driving directions and participating wineries, check out the video below and view the event’s WEBSITE.

Do you love Anderson Valley? Pair the Pinot Festival with our upcoming open house this Saturday, May 19th from 11am – 5pm at Wild Iris Retreat — just 11 miles away! Stop by for gourmet snacks, jeep tours and an inside view into one of the most enchanting properties to hit the market this year. Wild Iris Retreat is an exquisite 300+ acre property bordering the Navarro river with plenty of sunshine and shaded groves of towering redwoods. Featuring a large main house, two guest houses, a 90K gallon pool, a beautiful stone spa, and a dance hall, this is an opportunity you won’t want to miss!

Wild Iris Retreat Open House:
Saturday, May 19th
11Am – 5PM
20500 Tumbling MdD Road
Philo, CA 95466

Learn More About Wild Iris Retreat: CLICK HERE


*festival images by AV Wines