Updated: Jan 12
Kenwood was established in 1970 in the town of Kenwood.
The property and barn has been used as a working winery since 1906
Kenwood is a converted jug wine facility.
One of California’s premium wine pioneers
Since 1976, Kenwood Vineyards has been the EXCLUSIVE producer of wines from the vineyards of the famous Jack London Ranch.
Right off of highway 12.
Open daily 10:00am to 5:00pm
Currently tastings are in the spacious and updated 1906 barn.
Really gives you a flavor of old Sonoma County Winemaking.
A very laid back and chill atmosphere.
Grapes sourced from many Sonoma County AVA’s:
Dry Creek Valley
and Russian River Valley.
Two tasting options: $15 (5 samples) and $25 (serving wines only sold at winery)
Tasting fee is waived with $100 wine purchase.
Kenwood 35 label portfolio:
Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Syrah, Merlot, Pinot, Sauv Blanc, Pinot Gris.
Price Ranges for Kenwood wine:
Sonoma Series is $16-$22
Six Ridges Series $22-$35
Jack London Series $28
Artist Series $80-$90 range
Up to 500,000 cases annually produced
You May Not Know
In 1975, a memorable, scandalous label, became the talk of the town…
The “Naked Lady” label.
A local artist was commissioned to create original artwork to be used on a reserve Cabernet.
This was to be the first vintage of the Artist Series.
Back then labels were boring.
Kenwood wanted something to set the wine apart.
The artist obliged and created a beautiful naked lady lounging on a hillside in the vineyard.
A government agency nixed the painting.
The Bureau of Alcohol and Firearms called it “obscene and indecent”.
The artist painted a replacement to show a skeleton on the hillside.
A hillside painting made the final cut.
Twenty years later Kenwood resubmitted the “Naked Lady”.
This time it was government approved.
This art fiasco became very notable and was great for marketing the Artist Series.
Each year the Artist Series new label is celebrated, but no more commissioned art.
Kenwood obtains permission to use an art piece on the Artist Series label.
For example, 2003 Artist Series label was….
Vincent Van Gogh’s “Starry, Starry Night”.
My friend Katie used to work for Kenwood Vineyards.
She wanted to me to visit here for my 100 Wineries In 100 Days Challenge.
For a few years I’ve noticed a Kenwood poster up in her kitchen.
I never really understood the significance until I visited the winery…
Learning all about the ‘naked lady’ was fascinating as was seeing the original bottles.
I like this quote by Jack London:
“I ride over my beautiful ranch. Between my legs is a beautiful horse. The air is wine. The grapes on a score of rolling hills are red with autumn flame. Across Sonoma Mountain, wisps of sea fog are stealing. The afternoon smolders in the drowsy sky. I have everything to make me feel alive…”
I love that Kenwood has exclusive Jack London Wine.
I love Jack London’s words.
This winery makes me feel deeply connected to Sonoma County history.