Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon and cheese pairing in bento boxes at Vista Point

Spend the Day Cheese Tasting at These Six Alexander Valley Wineries

A delicious cheese and wine pairing can be a match made in heaven, and what better way to spend an afternoon in wine country than exploring this culinary classic? A number of wineries in Sonoma’s Alexander Valley now provide a professionally paired cheese tasting to showcase cheeses that complement their red, white and rosé wines. Read on to find our guide to these food exploration experiences in Alexander Valley. Listed prices are per person or plate, and tasting times vary per winery. Reservations are required or recommended unless noted otherwise, so please plan ahead. If your favorite Alexander Valley winery cheese tasting program isn’t listed, please let us know in the comments.

Be sure to read about our Top 30 Sonoma County Wineries for Wine & Cheese Pairing

Alexander Valley Wineries with Cheese and Wine Tasting

wine and cheese tasting, Alexander Valley Vineyards
The cheese and wine tasting flight at historic Alexander Valley Vineyards.

Alexander Valley Vineyards

Founded in the 1960s by the Wetzel family, Alexander Valley Vineyards pairs local cheeses with its flagship Bordeaux-style red blend, Cyrus, and three other top-tier wines—don’t miss the cabernet franc—in a tasting on the deck, overlooking the vineyards. $25

8644 Highway 128, Healdsburg, CA, 800-888-7209,
cheese and wine tasting at Chalk Hill
Cheese and wine tasting with a view at Chalk Hill Estate, just outside of Alexander Valley.

Chalk Hill Estate

The tiny Chalk Hill appellation, which neighbors Alexander Valley, includes just four Healdsburg wineries, so we’ve included Chalk Hill Estate in our Alexaander Valley wine and cheese tasting list. Artisanal cheese pairings are a focal point of the Chairman’s Reserve Tasting, which includes a conversational drive through the estate vineyard and tour of the winery, concluding with a seated tasting of four reserve wines and four kinds of cheese. They serve this pairing indoors or outside on a hilltop terrace, weather permitting. $65

10300 Chalk Hill Road, Healdsburg, CA, 707-657-4837,
Hanna Winery cheese and wine tasting
Hanna Winery’s wine and cheese tasting on the terrace. Photo courtesy of Hanna.

Hanna Winery Alexander Valley

Uncover the best cheese for red wine on the Veranda at Hanna Winery. Their Wine & Cheese Pairing is a seated experience with broad views of Alexander Valley’s southern vineyards. Hanna pairs its Flagship, Reserve and Bismark tier wines with local Sonoma cheeses. The winery is owned and operated by Christine Hanna, daughter of the winery’s founder, Dr. Elias Hanna. $35

9280 Highway 128, Healdsburg, CA, 707-431-4310,
red wine pouring, wine and cheese tasting
Hawkes’ cheese and wine pairing, served upon request at the family’s nearby vineyard.

Hawkes Wine

Located right next door from the not-to-be-missed Jimtown Store, Jake Hawkes’ winery is all about cabernet sauvignon. His Reserve Tastings are private, seated affairs featuring different atmospheres for sipping the king of reds. The Barrel Room Tasting of six wines includes library, current release and barrel samples — all served with local cheeses, Hawkes olive oil and charcuterie fixings. The Vineyard Tasting, hosted on a picturesque knoll overlooking Jake’s vineyard, proffers stunning views and includes three cabernets, a chardonnay and a merlot, accompanied by a cheese tasting, olive oil and accoutrements. $45

6734 Highway 128, Healdsburg, CA, 707-433-4295,
bento box with cheese at Jordan Winery
The cheese tasting is served in a custom bento box at the finale of Jordan’s Estate Tour & Tasting.

Jordan Vineyard & Winery

Since its founding in the 1970s, wine and food pairings have been central to the Jordan experience. Each year, Executive Chef Todd Knoll creates a cheese tasting that best showcases the French-inspired winery’s flagship wine red, featuring pairings to match with both younger and older cabernet sauvignons. The ending pièce de résistance of all three tours and tastings at Jordan–after a food pairing with Jordan Chardonnay–are four cheeses served with Jordan olive oil, homemade membrillo and multiple cabernets. These extraordinary experiences are hosted either in a hidden Cellar Room at the winery’s French chateau or in a glass-walled pavilion offering hilltop views of three wine valleys. $35-$125

1474 Alexander Valley Road, Healdsburg, CA, 800-654-1213,

wine and cheese tasting with menus at Medlock Ames

Medlock Ames

The tasting room at the former Alexander Valley Store & Bar offers an Artisan Cheese and Wine pairing of five wines and four kinds of cheese from local creameries, alongside estate marmalade and jam. You can choose to enjoy the tasting inside or outside on the porch overlooking the bar’s garden and bocce court. Walk-ins are welcome, space permitting. $20

3487 Alexander Valley Road, Healdsburg, CA, 707-431-8845,

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About the Author

Born and raised in rural Kansas, Lisa Mattson fell in love with wine during college in South Florida and worked for a wine magazine before moving to Northern California. She spent almost a decade working as a writer, marketing director and photographer/videographer for Jordan Winery and now serves as a hospitality design and marketing consultant for several wineries, including Jordan. She also designs succulent gardens under the name Sonoma Succulents. When she’s not eating and sipping her way through Sonoma County in the summer and Baja California Sur in the winter, she travels the world with her husband in search of new succulents, ethnic foods, snorkeling spots and tiki bars.

    • Nicole Jacobs
    • September 15, 2018

    Always such great ideas, thoroughly researched and personally tested. Is there a better artisinal food and wine writer in Sonoma County?

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