One of the top Cabernet Sauvignon brands in all of California, Jordan Vineyard & Winery in Healdsburg is a dream come true, both for its founders and its guests.
In 1972, Francophiles Tom and Sally Jordan had a vision. The couple sought to transform Northern Sonoma into an internationally lauded wine region. Lovers of Bordeaux-style wine, they believed the keys to unlock similarly exquisite expressions were hidden across 275 acres of orchards in what is today the Alexander Valley.
For the rest of the decade, the Jordans worked the land, resulting in the release of a 1979 Cabernet Sauvignon. Within three years of its release, it was named “Best Cabernet in America” by the Beverage Tasting Institute. While building the brand and adding new varietals each year, the Jordan family amassed a total of 1,200 rolling acres in the region with a vision to create a food and wine mecca unlike anything attempted before.
The result is the Jordan Estate, a 58,000-sq.-ft. chateau that rivals any from anyone’s wildest dreams. It houses winemaking operations, extensive wine and culinary experiences, a gourmet commercial kitchen, an extensive cellar and one of the most luxurious lodging options in all of wine country (more on that shortly). No expense was spared in the chateau’s rich design, from its unimpeded French doors and authentic Provencal tiles to custom-designed linens and antique silver candelabras.
In order to fully experience the grandeur of Jordan Vineyard & Winery, indulge in a combination tour and tasting. There are currently two offered.
If short on time, book the 90-minute Winery Tour and Tasting, which starts at $80 per guest. It kicks off with a glass of Chardonnay, which is to be enjoyed while strolling along the terrace and breathing in the view while learning about the innerworkings of the winery as well as basics about winemaking in California. The tour then moves inside for a peek at the barrel room and winemaking operations before a side door appears, beckoning guests into a newly remodeled tasting suite, where they will sample a bevy of wines with curated, seasonal bites meant to accentuate each vintage.
If time permits, there is also a three-hour-plus Estate Tour & Tasting, which starts at $160 per guest. The adventure starts with an outdoor breakfast paired with Champagne. Once complete, guests jump into private luxury transportation for a journey across the 1,200 acres. Plan to stop along the way both for wine tasting amidst the vines as well as copious photo opportunities. Reserve and hard-to-find varietals will be part of the experience, as will additional an olive oil tasting and full-scale wine pairing lunch that takes place outdoors (as weather permits) atop Jordan’s highest hill. It is a showstopper.
Now, before sharing some favorite bottles to buy and enjoy after a tour or from the comfort of home, let’s circle back (but not in the annoying “work email” way) to those lodging options, a true rarity on a vineyard property for more than those who work there.
There are three chateau guest suites, a marriage of Old-World sophistication and modern-day luxuries, are dripping with elegance and romance. They range in size from 575 to 800 square feet and feature striking architectural lines, antiques from the Louis XIII, XV and XVI periods, posh French-inspired custom furniture and – of course – Jordan wine to sample en suite to enjoy throughout one’s stay. Each room boasts a stunning view of the vineyard or full balcony, fireplace, sitting area, king-sized bed and a private bathroom. Suite guests have the option to enjoy both wine tasting and a full vineyard tour during their stay as well as breakfast delivered daily complete with French press coffee and Jordan Estate foraged tea. There is also courtesy transportation available to suite guests to and from downtown Healdsburg and the in-house concierge team can plan exclusive, intimate culinary and wine experiences across the region for an added fee.
The catch: reservations are limited to Jordan Reward Members.
However, everyone is a member.
When visiting the Jordan Vineyard & Winery website, a screen appears showing there is a 3,000-point reward balance available to use. The balance and offer may be collected upon agreeing to be a subscriber to Jordan emails. Once signed on, there is no annual fee or minimum purchase to remain a member. Instead, anytime members purchase wine from the online shop or in person, points increase exponentially. Members also gain access to invite-only events both at the winery and across the globe.
To book a suite, members need to collect 5,000 points. They are then able to reserve a suite starting at just $250 per night. There is also a guest house, Wildwood, just off the main Chateau that is available to members for additional points.
The easiest way to earn those points? Purchase some vino! Here is where to start:
2019 Jordan Russian River Chardonnay: This beauty is perfect for a celebration. It was designed for one, in fact, as it was made to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Jordan‘s first vintage of Chardonnay. It is bright and expressive with notes of Meyer lemon, orange blossoms and spring flowers. Expect oak but also this punch of acidity and dash of creaminess in every sip. $42
2018 Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon: Hello, black fig! The sweet, dried fruit is a prominent tasting note here, complemented by ripe cherries and oodles of dark berries. There are even slight hints of both chocolate and vanilla bean that come forth on the third or fourth taste. $60
2015 Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon: A collector’s item, given 2015 marked the first year Jordan tried its hand at aging its cab entirely in French oak. The result is a much more Old World wine to the palate yet still with beautiful fruit, notably cranberries and cherries, that dance across the tongue. $85
For more information about Jordan Vineyard & Winery, visit www.jordanwinery.com.