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“The best experience in Sonoma” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Tom's Secret Winery Tours

Tom's Secret Winery Tours
1110 Lark Ave., Sonoma, CA 95476
707-331-3715
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Ranked #11 of 31 Tours & Activities in Sonoma
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Owner description: Serving Sonoma Valley and beyond. Check out private wineries. Meet: Owners/ Winemakers/ Growers. No tasting fees. No crowded tasting rooms. Enjoy a private wine tour with a local grower/ winemaker. Cheers!!!
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“The best experience in Sonoma”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2014 via mobile

I knew this tour would be great the moment we hopped into Tom's truck. Waiting for us were two personalized wine bottles full of water pumped from Tom's well.

I found Tom's Secret Winery Tours on Trip Advisor while browsing new experiences for my husband and I to have while in Sonoma. We communicated with Tom via email and phone and told him our wine preferences. We were soon sent an itinerary of 3 wineries Tom chose to take us to.

This visit to Sonoma was our fourth, so this tour was something out of the ordinary for us. We learned more from the first man, Nick, in five minutes than we ever did going to all of the tasting rooms on the Square. At around noon, Tom took us to his beautiful home, where we met his wife who is an accomplished wine maker. We enjoyed homemade Pinot Nior and Zin while eating paninis and relaxing on his back porch. Next we were off to the beautiful Beltrane Ranch and our host, Laura, was simply awesome. My favorite wine was Fumè Bob, a homage to the ranch's 8 year old bull. Lastly, we were taken to GlenLyon Winery, whose owner Squire, educated us on the history of wine drinking then inviting us to sit and enjoy his compound's backyard while sampling some of his finest blends.

We have already told everyone we met in Sonoma about this wonderful tour. We have already promised ourselves to book another each time we visit. In my opinion, there really is no other, more authentic way to experience Sonoma than with Tom, his suggestions, and tour.

Visited April 2014
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English first
Boston
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Tom promised 'a blast', and delivered”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 31, 2013

First thing Tom wrote us after we signed up for the tour was "We're gonna have a blast". He repeated this promise several times, over the course of our back-and-forth emails where we set up the itinerary and other details. And you know what, we did have a blast!

My wife and I get together every year with some friends from the West Coast, and this year our destination was Sonoma/Napa. It's beautiful country. If you tour it there's a lot you can learn about the art of wine making and a lot of wine to be tasted. And there's no better way to get off the main roads and see the back country wineries, of which there are scads, than to do a tour like this (and there probably IS no other practical way).

Tom sort of set the stage with his laid-back and friendly personality, and then let the growers do their thing. He took us to three wineries, about which I won't go into detail here except to say that we tasted some very good wines and were feeling pretty mellow by the time he returned us to our hotel. For lunch, Tom provided paninis and some of his own home-grown wine at his place, where we were lucky enough to meet his wife Suzie and some very nice friends of theirs. So all in all, a fun, satisfying, and unique day. We had a blast, and it's gonna be hard to match.

Visited October 2013
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New York City, New York
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Highly Recommended”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

My husband and I booked a tour with Tom on our honeymoon. The day was an absolute blast and Tom was an amazing tour guide. Definitely recommend Tom's tour to anyone looking for an insider's look into Somoma's wineries.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Branford, Connecticut
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“A Real Insider's View of Sonoma Wine Country”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2013

Tom took my adult son and me on a fun and informative private tour of several small wineries in Sonoma County. He and his wife own a small but beautiful vineyard and are winemakers, using some of their grapes and buying others from friends. As an established part of the community, he knows the small wine makers well and selected an excellent and diverse sample for us to visit. I have been to Sonoma many times but was unaware of the vineyards and winemakers we visited with Tom. They were among the best we have ever tried and their wines are largely unavailable other than at the vineyard or through their wine club. Although there was absolutely no pressure, we bought wine at two of them and joined the wine club of a third. My son, visiting Sonoma for the first time, appreciated Tom's laid back but attentive style, liked all of the wineries and thought one wine maker had such great wine that it would not be off the grid for long. For lunch, Tom brought us to his lovely home and fed us paninis on the patio, which is surrounded by beautiful old growth vines, and served us outstanding wine he and wife make in small quantities. Our only "disappointment" is that Tom does not sell his wine! One other note--this is a small business, so you can assured of getting Tom himself if you book, which we highly recommend. Don't pass up the opportunity to see a part of Sonoma you would miss with more commercial tour operators!

Visited April 2013
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New York City, New York
1 review
“Very friendly”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2013 via mobile

Very friendly and informative. He arranged a special itinerary for my fiancé and I, but when we had to cancel, he still offered to answer questions and help us out. Thank you!

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