AWG Correspondent

Elizabeth Smith

MacRostie Winery Photos

MacRostie Winery Review

Regions: Sonoma Coast AVA, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley AVA, California

Reviewed: June 15, 2016 by Elizabeth Smith
Published: December 15, 2016

Thirteen years after beginning his career as a winemaker at Hacienda Winery in 1974 making Burgundian-style variety wines such as chardonnay and pinot noir, Steve MacRostie founded MacRostie Winery and Vineyards in 1987. Over the course of the past 30 years, MacRostie has developed relationships with some of the best Sonoma Coast vineyard owners, including the Bacigalupis, Duttons, Martinellis, and Sangiacomos. Today, MacRostie sources grapes from 30 chardonnay and 15 pinot noir sites, as well as MacRostie’s own Wildcat Mountain Vineyard.

In 2015, the new era of MacRostie hospitality began with the opening of their modern and beautiful Estate House a few miles outside of Healdsburg, California. Surrounded by Thale’s Vineyard, both indoor and outdoor seating options offer splendid views of the Russian River Valley. Seated semi-private and private tastings range from $20 to $55 per person.

The day of our tasting, our group was greeted outside with glasses of the 2014 MacRostie Sonoma Coast Chardonnay ($25). Our host, Brittani, gave us an overview of the new facility and allowed us to walk around gazing at the artwork and scenery before seating us at a long couch. At each place setting were tasting menus personalized with the name of our group. Brittani told us about our welcome wine, the Sonoma Coast Chardonnay, which is a majority of the winery’s total production. The remainder of their production focuses primarily on single-vineyard expressions of chardonnay and pinot noir.

We had the opportunity to taste two more chardonnays and three pinot noirs: the 2014 Sangiacomo Vineyard Chardonnay ($46), 2014 Goldrock Ridge Vineyard Chardonnay ($46), 2014 Cummings Vineyard Pinot Noir ($56), 2014 Manzana Vineyard Pinot Noir ($56), and 2013 Wildcat Mountain Vineyard Pinot Noir ($50). Brittani sat facing us, sharing details about each of the wines we were tasting. Between each wine, she would leave us so that we could discuss them among ourselves. She was genuine, personable, and professional.

While the pinot noirs were fantastic, I could not take my mind off of the chardonnays. I have become picky about chardonnay and find it difficult to find ones I really enjoy unless they are from Burgundy. Although I usually shy away from chardonnays that go through 100% primary and secondary malolactic fermentation, these three were nothing short of outstanding. These chardonnays demonstrate some of the best vineyard terroir of the Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast, as well as illustrate great depth of texture, aroma, and flavor. The rich mouthfeel added by the malolactic fermentation does not overpower the bright, tart citrus qualities and vibrant acidity.

At the conclusion of the tasting, Brittani left us to wander around a little longer with our last sips of pinot noir. We ventured out to the patio to bask in the glorious views and to take a few group photos. We talked about how wonderful Brittani was and decided we wanted to take a photo with her as well. We went inside to find her for our final group photo. Our tour leader purchased wine and we departed. A few days later, I was still thinking about my MacRostie experience and wished I had purchased a few bottles of those phenomenal chardonnays. I will return soon to experience the greatness that is MacRostie Winery and Vineyards.

Address & Contact Information: 4605 Westside Road Healdsburg, California 95448. Telephone: 707-473-9303, email:, website: Tasting Hours: Mon-Thurs 11:00-5:00, Fri-Sun 10:00-5:00.

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