These California Wineries Invite You to Taste, Then Take in the Art

A little Chardonnay, a little Weiwei.

For many California winemakers, bottling delicious grape juice is only one of their passions. Some have embellished their gorgeous wineries and tasting rooms with art collections by both local artists and international superstars. The next time you’re in wine country, check out the art at one or two of these inspired venues as curated by 7×7. Here are some of our favorites: 

Courtesy of Donum Estate.

Donum Estate, Sonoma

“On 200 bucolic acres, Donum Estate is notable for its chardonnay and Burgundian-style pinot noir crafted by Anne Moller-Racke, one of the region’s top female winemakers. But it’s also a must-visit for its high-end sculpture park, an open-air gallery that showcases more than 30 installations by major international artists.

Inhale the aroma of the grapes as you wander around Artificial Rock, a stainless-steel piece by Chinese artist Zhang Wang; take an astrological journey in the Circle of Animal/Zodiac Heads by Ai Weiwei, located inside a zen garden-like space; take a selfie with Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s Pumpkin; and play like a royal with Keith Haring’s King and Queen sculpture, produced just three years before his death. More of the collection resides inside the Donum Home, including the Crouching Spider by Paris-born artist Louise Bourgeois, whose works currently appear at SFMOMA.”

—Anna Volpicelli // Open by reservation only by calling 707-732-2200; 24500 Ramal Road in Sonoma, thedonumestate.com

Courtesy of Larkmead Estate. Artwork by Kate Solari.

Larkmead, Calistoga

“One of the oldest wineries in Napa Valley, the quaint, 1895 Larkmead estate in Calistoga displays the artwork of proprietor Kate Solari, who grew up in Napa Valley and started painting in the ’80s (she even has a studio in the hayloft of the historic Larkmead barn). Her Keeping Accounts ledger collages are especially on theme; Solar created this series from the winery’s 20th century ledgers that her mother kept, which she’s incorporated into colorful vineyard landscapes.”

Jess Lander // 1100 Larkmead Lane in Calistoga, larkmead.com

Courtesy of the Hess Collection.

Hess Collection, Napa

“Located above the tasting room, Hess Collection’s three-story modern-art gallery exhibits more than 20 artists in proprietor Donald Hess’ personal collection, curated over 40 years. Our favorite works include the flaming typewriter by Leopoldo Maler, a tribute to his uncle who was assassinated for his political essays, and a room dedicated to environmental sculptor Andy Goldsworthy. His piece, Rock Pools, consists of large melted stones that he fired up in a kiln.”

Jess Lander // 4411 Redwood Rd. in Napa, hesscollection.com

Discover more art-friendly wineries here.

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