Glad this thread exists - gives me some good ideas - but going to hijack a bit to see if I can get some suggestions targeted to me (sorry OP for the hijack but seems timely instead of creating a new thread)
Might have the opportunity to do a 1 day trip on a Tuesday in March solo - land at SFO around 9a - rent a car, drive up to Napa or Sonoma, hit a few wineries, head back down and catch a flight out at 9pm. Looking for tips on 2-3 really good tasting experiences.
Bit of background info - 31 male, generally prefer the less mechanical/commerical tastings - I like when they don't mind pouring an extra taste or two because they have the bottles open and really want to give you a chance to compare (especially if its a vertical). Probably looking for reds only - cabs are my top choice, but I enjoy a good malbec, zin, PS, cab franc, petite verdot - syrah can be hit or miss and generally don't like most pinots. Lived in CA for a year and was member at Louis M. Martini in Napa, Opolo in Paso, and Oreana in Santa Barbara. Two trips to wine country 5-6 years ago - first time I was mainly a white drinker and know we did Jacuzzi, Cline, Foppiano, Coppola in Sonoma (maybe 1-2 others), and we did a day in Napa but don't recall where we went. Second trip was to Napa (red pref by then) and don't remember all of them but Martini and William Hill were my favorites - we did Tamber Bey twice because they had a delicious wine/cookie pairing, but we went back more for the cookies than the wine - I know we also went to V. Sattui and maybe 2 others. Favorites in the Paso area are Opolo and Justin. I am no expert when it comes to wine, but I appreciate a decent bottle ($30-100 range) - however my parents' daily drinkers are usually in the $7-10 range and I get along with those just fine (ravenswood, gnarly head, perseverance, etc). I also enjoy a late harvest zin and have bought a few of the woots from Harvest Moon over the years.
Sorry this post is getting long - in short, any recommendations of top 2-3 to hit in a single day in either valley (but grouped by either Sonoma or Napa) - thanks!!