Anderson Valley

At the town of Albion, Highway 128 leads southeast into the Anderson Valley, where warm summer weather lures those weary of the persistent coastal fog. Most of the first 13 miles wind through redwood forest along the Navarro River, then the road opens up to reveal farms and vineyards. While the community here is anchored in ranching, in the past few decades a progressive, gourmet-minded counterculture has taken root, and that is what defines most visitors' experiences. In the towns of Philo and Boonville, you'll find eclectic bed-and-breakfasts and small eateries.

Anderson Valley is best known to outsiders for its wineries. Tasting rooms here are more low-key than their counterparts in Napa; most are in farmhouses, and you're as likely to hear reggae as classical music as you sip. That said, Anderson Valley wineries produce world-class wines, particularly Pinot Noirs and Gew├╝rztraminers, whose grapes thrive in the moderate coastal climate. Many wineries straddle Highway 128, mostly in Navarro and Philo with a few east of Boonville.

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