SANTA ROSA, Calif.
One of the things I’ve been trying to do all these years of living in the San Francisco Bay Area is to experience lavender season in wine country. Today I crossed that off my list when I visited Matanzas Creek Winery in Sonoma County.
Matanzas is known not just for its wine but the massive lavender garden that fronts its property in Bennett Valley in Santa Rosa. June is considered peak lavender season, but luckily for me the lavender plants were still in full bloom. (Some time in late July they’ll probably harvest some of the lavender so head there now.)
With the beautiful warm weather and cooling breeze, it was picture perfect as my niece Margot and I spent some time snapping selfies in the sea of purple flowers. The garden was buzzing, not just from the many visitors checking out the lavender but the many bees that were enjoying the lavender too.
The winery, of course, also offers tasting. It’s a lovely space with a lot of outdoor areas to hang out to enjoy the view. The lavender barn is also a popular destination to see tons of lavender air drying, along with various products from lavender lotion to salt.
Visiting these lavender fields made me want to visit Provence in France. But until that day happens, it’s nice to know I can get a little bit of Provence just a couple of hours drive north.
The deets: Matanzas Creek Winery, 6097 Bennett Valley Road, Santa Rosa, Calif. PH: 707.528.6464. Open daily 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. $10 for tasting and lavender garden entry. Reservations for large groups only. Walk-ins welcomed. www.matanzascreek.com
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