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Square Peg Winery

Updated: Jan 13, 2023

  • This is truly an “off the beaten path” winery in beautiful West Sonoma County.

  • One of those wineries that is still relatively undiscovered

  • The kind of winery making exceptional wine yet no-one seems to know about it.

  • The kind of winery you want to visit and then name drop because no doubt they will be big!

  • The Square Peg Estate Vineyard is just outside the quaint town of Occidental.

  • Tip:

  • Have lunch at Hazel Restaurant or Negris in downtown Occidental before you go wine tasting!

  • A family owned, boutique winery, Proprietors, Brad Alper and Alanna Roth.

  • The new tasting room with its vaulted ceiling has a bright, and modern ambiance.

  • Also a beautiful art gallery featuring Alanna Roth’s sculptures, glassware and mosaics.

  • Your seated tasting includes a view of the vineyard through the picture windows.

  • Pinot Noir is the flagship wine of this Russian River Valley winery.

  • Before tasting, enjoy a guided tour of the vineyard to learn about dry farming.

  • Estate Wine Tasting:

  • $25 pp, by appointment, fee waived with 2 bottle purchase, 5 wines.

  • Artist-in-Resident Tasting:

  • Seated tasting/tour of art studio, by appointment, flight of 5 wines.

  • Wines are allocated through a mailing list.

  • Wines:

  • Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon

  • William Knuttel is the veteran winemaker who adheres to Burgundian style wine making.

  • He is making wine, farmed on premiere Russian River Valley property.

  • A grove of Redwood trees provides shade for picnicking on the property.

  • Alex, Brad and Alanna’s son, hosts the tastings.

  • In 2011, at 51, Brad Alper retired early from his career as an American Airline Pilot.

  • He made the leap and became 100% devoted to making wine.

  • Having lived in the Russian River Valley since 1987, and being inspired by his Italian neighbor….

  • He decided to plant Zin in 1994 on one acre.

  • In 1999 he purchased a 12 acre apple farm near his property and planted more Zin.

  • In 2010, it was Brad’s bold idea to dry farm Pinot Noir.

  • Zin is typically dry farmed but not Pinot!

  • Some in the wine industry questioned the idea of dry farming.

  • Today Brad is successfully dry farming Pinot Noir and this sets them apart.

  • Alanna wanted an easily remembered brand name and landed on Square Peg.

  • Square Peg is associated with those of us who struggle to conform.

  • We’re the square peg trying to fit in a round hole.

  • Brad’s square peg idea to dry farm is a perfect example. Kudos to Brad.

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