Best Wineries
MacRostie Estate House street view.

MacRostie Winery in Healdsburg

By Published On: September 3rd, 2023

Explore the Evolving Portfolio of their Sonoma Coast Wines.

Set off winding country Westside Road in Healdsburg and perched on a hill surrounded by vineyards and lavender, beams MacRostie Winery & Vineyards.

Moments after you’ve arrived and a host greets you outside with a glass of wine before you reach the tasting room door, you’ll feel relaxed and transported to a genteel, bucolic place.

MacRostie Winery tasting room entrance.
Entrance to the winery’s Tasting Room. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

The tasting room is airy and contemporary with a California-cool vibe, wrapped in glass with splendid views of Russian River vineyards from every angle. It’s the kind of inviting winery you’ll want to visit again and again.

Hospitality is a priority here, but so is seeking top-tier grape sources for the astounding 12 chardonnays and 16-plus pinot noirs produced by winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen.

Among the pinot noirs, grape sources include Dutton Ranch, Sangiacomo, and Petaluma Gap AVA. Bacigalupi, Charles Heintz, and MacRostie’s own Wildcat Mountain are just a few of the sought-after vineyard sources for the glorious Chardonnay assortment.

With fruit this celebrated, Bridenhagen downplays the oak and other tricks of her trade, letting the vintage, grape clones and vineyard terroir do the talking.

Aerial view of MacRostie Winery and vineyards.
Aerial view of the winery and surrounding vineyards. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

Visiting MacRostie Winery’s Estate House

With its modern elegance – striking architecture, warm grain woods, rich leather seating, and gorgeous landscaping – the tasting room feels like an impressively designed, yet laid back, home.

MacRostie Winery's Tasting Room, also known as the Estate House.
MacRostie Winery’s Tasting Room, also known as the Estate House. Photo Courtesy: Kathryn MacDonald.

Created to offer an array of experiences and environments, choose your private table on the shaded side patio lounge by the trickling fountains, the sunny front patio with dramatic views of the vineyards, or chill out inside on a couch or table.

Guests being served wine on patioat MacRostie Winery.
Guests being served on patio at MacRostie Winery. Photo Courtesy: Stuart Blackwell.

The Signature Tasting Experience is hosted by your own Wine Ambassador, who is not only expertly versed on the wines but also engaging, sharing details about the winemaking and vineyards, and who can personalize the wine tasting based on your preferences.

Although the menu changes with new releases, expect to taste five wines: the Bacigalupi Vineyard Chardonnay Russian River Valley, Nightwing Chardonnay Petaluma Gap AVA, Anderson Valley Pinot Noir, Wildcat Mountain Pinot Noir and the Clockwise red blend.

The refreshing Clockwise Sauvignon Blanc Sonoma County is offered as a welcome taste.

MacRostie also produces sparkling brut and rosé, a Clockwise Zinfandel and a Cabernet Sauvignon.

The Signature Tasting fee: $35 per person. Tasting fee will be waived with purchase of three-plus bottles of wine. Two tasting fees will be waived with a new wine club membership.

MacRostie rosé of Cabernet Sauvignon.
MacRostie rosé of Cabernet Sauvignon. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

Library Vintage Experience

For a deep dive into older vintages, reserve the Library Vintage Experience and savor pristinely aged wines from the MacRostie’s cellar guided by a senior ambassador. The flight of three Chardonnays and three Pinot Noirs also includes a sampling of charcuterie from Healdsburg’s Journeyman Meat Co.

This experience is held every Friday at 2 p.m. and every Sunday at 11 a.m. or 2 p.m. $75 per person. Limited to 8 guests.

Tasting MacRostie Wines

What delights fans of cool-climate Pinot Noir and Chardonnay is MacRostie’s portfolio of bright, balanced and age-worthy wines. Founded by Steve MacRostie in 1987, who helped to pioneer winemaking on the Sonoma Coast, Steve has stepped away from the daily winemaking decisions and handed the torch to winemaker Bridenhagen. 

“What inspires me to produce so many different wines are the endless opportunities of varietals, microclimates and styles,” says up-and-coming winemaker Bridenhagen.

MacRostie Winery Winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen.
Winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

With current releases of more than 30 wines, clearly, she has an unbridled passion for winemaking, experimenting and tasting a wide range of wines. “Many vineyards in Sonoma County do not have an endless supply of fruit, so I often have the opportunity to source just a few tons from a single vineyard.” 

Macrostie Winery fountain and table setup
Vineyard view and table setup. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

Current Releases of Flagship Wines

2021 MacRostie Sonoma Coast Chardonnay

Expect an elegant and alluring wine with layers of persimmon, ripe Meyer lemon and brioche. Lush and complex on the palate, its bright citrus flavors and cool-climate energy showcase the purity of the Sonoma Coast.

2021 MacRostie Nightwing Vineyard Chardonnay

Combining richness and energy, this wine leaps from the glass with fragrances of Honeycrisp apple, tropical fruit, gardenia and sweet baking spices. The palate is lushly textured with juicy flavors of kiwi, guava and pineapple, ending in bright finish.

MacRostie Winery Winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen in Nightwing Vineyard.
Winemaker Heidi Bridenhagen in Nightwing Vineyard. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

2021 MacRostie The Key Chardonnay Sonoma Coast

The Key exudes tropical aromas of lemon, lime and fresh pineapple juice with a gentle note of orange peel. The creamy, rich palate flaunts notes of floral gardenia, with a balance between energetic acidity, a creamy mouth feel, and lush layers of delicious fruit.

2021 MacRostie Wildcat Mountain Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast

Powerful and expressive, this decadent magenta purple Pinot Noir has aromas of sweet plum and boysenberry with a rich nose of intense fruit and oak. Soft tannins and ripe blackberry and black cherry dance across the palate with a supple yet strong finish.

Wildcat Mountain Pinot Noir. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

2021 MacRostie The Loch Pinot Noir

The Loch is what the winemaker calls a “smooth criminal” with earthy Pinot Noir aromas and layers of energetic fruit offering stunning notes of black cherry, plum and black current. The lasting finish is round and lush.

The Details

Reservations are required for all experiences, but you might get lucky if you pop in. At least 24-hour notice is also required for any snack boxes, which are ample to share.

MacRostie Winery Veggie harvest box offering.
Veggie harvest box offering. Photo Courtesy: MacRostie Winery.

MacRostie Winery & Vineyards is open Monday-Thursday, 11am-5pm; Friday-Sunday, 10am-5pm. Dogs on a leash are welcome.

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