With a tiered outdoor patio that wraps around the restaurant, Sonoma Wine Garden is a primo place to nest for some wine tasting and Mediterranean food pairings — think beer garden but instead of communal picnic tables, there’s levels with cushioned benches and pillows to settle into while you enjoy drinks. Happy Hour wines-by-the glass are in the $7-$9 range from 3:30 to 6:30. The heat lamp kept Irene & I (& quite possibly our delicious wood-fired pizza margherita) toasty as we sipped our Skeleton Malbec, Votre Sante Pinot Noir and 14 Hands Cab.
Located on the third level Dining Deck at Santa Monica Place, Sonoma Wine Garden truly “transports the diner to an outdoor veranda in the heart of wine country,” as they boast on the web site. There’s also a $25 VIP Wine Club where members gain access to the “Sips from the Cellar” wine list as well as a monthly raffle to win dinner for two.