Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Part V of VII: My Sonoma Wine Country Tour

Part V of VII: My Sonoma Wine Country Tour, without touring one vineyard or tasting a drop of wine—what a concept!
On the way to the town of Sonoma we passed a number of "Chateau's". The main building of various winery's was most often a grand attempt to recreate the main house in a French vineyard. But in this country, the building is not a home at all, but a tasting room, shops and offices.

So much for Palais Royale!

While these buildings are imposing, some of them are good, and for some it is apparent that there was little reference to authentic, historic architectural details of a French chateau.

The Chateau at Domaine Carneros had the most authentic French architecture, while the hybrid-Chateau at Ledson Vinyards was...well...not.

Okay now!

Here we are, finally in the town of Sonoma, and it took me four blog "posts" to get here!
Heck, we drove faster than this blogging thing could be done, and I thought the Internet was supposed to be lighting fast!

We took the main road directly into the towns square. So incredibly charming, the square was adjacent to the courthouse/town hall, a historic stone building, surrounded by leafy oak trees.

Above: Sonoma City Hall, and the Town Plaza.

Below: The Historic Building Sebastiani Building; the Sebastiani Theatre


Where to Shop:

Chateau Sonoma - 153 W Napa Street (http://www.chateausonoma.com/).

Located in a painted brick building with black and white striped awnings and expansive rear garden.

Artfully arranged and presented unique antiques, architectural artifacts, upholstered furniture and accessories for home and garden.

What a great lamp and shade! We had seen a similar lamp and shade in the Design Center in Laguna Beach a couple of years back, and bought it for the store. And, we haven't seen one since.

The lamps are one of a kind, and are made from antique or vintage statues, artifacts or architectural fragments.

Topped with a parchment shade, made from antique English Indentures (remember when we thought it terribly smart to hang over the fireplace an authentic English Indenture, complete with its original wax seals?)

I photographed this wonderful English club chair that was in the front window, featuring a unique upholstery detail. Below is the Chair, featuring French knots tied at the corners of the arms and the chair back.


H Frank - 28 W Spain Street.
(not to be confused with the "K Frank" store in Santa Barbara, with the sign of the same style and similarly named store).

Find top of bed Linens, throw pillows and an upholstered headboard, featuring metallic printed coat of arms/royal imagery on Velvet.


Harvest Home - 107 W Napa Street (North side of The Square). Manned by a knowledgeable and helpful staff, I was assisted by Lauren.

I was intrigued with these occasional tables, pictured below. Designed by the stores owner, Craig Miller, these tables feature an iron base and a stone top with hammered edge.


Where to Eat:

girl & the fig - 110 W Spain St (South side of "The Square"). This restaurant was recommended to me by several people, and I fully intended to eat there.

So, though I haven't personally experienced it, I'm sure its damn good. Give it a try and let me know what you think of it. If its good, then I'll try it!

Sunflower Cafee (not a typo) - 421 1st St West (East side of "The Square"). This is where we had lunch, not fancy, but fast. Time was of the essence as we still needed to make Healdsburg before dark. Enjoy great lattes (they said it, not me), open for breakfast (try the chef's specialty--homemade Frittata), lunch and dinner (save room for the the bread pudding, another of the chef's specialty's). Fairly priced sandwiches, soup, salad's and even an outdoor wine bar. Art by local artists line the the walls of the cafe. The Sunflower Cafee is home to "The Singing Chef", Chef Curtis Dorsett, whom the current owners inherited when they purchased the cafe. Can't say I heard the singing chef, maybe on my next visit.


Okay, done with Sonoma and finally off to Healdsburg!
Good Night Moon

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