As the pandemic drags on, a worst-case scenario for hospitality businesses has unfolded in Sonoma County. Winter rainy season is officially here. The change in weather signals the welcomed end to fire season, but it also brings the unwelcome closure of many small restaurants and wineries that cannot serve customers indoors due to state and county mandates set to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
Both outdoor and indoor dining and wine tasting were prohibited for most of December and January. The California Department of Public Health recently ended Sonoma County’s stay-at-home order, which allows restaurants and wineries to resume outdoor dining and wine tasting only. All indoor eating and drinking remains prohibited. Thanks to Sonoma’s crisp air and warm, sunny days, pivoting to all outdoor wine tastings last year was an easy shift for us at Jordan. But due to winter’s cool temperatures and frequency of rainfall, Jordan Winery will not reopen for outdoor wine tastings until May 1. We don’t want to disappoint guests when we have to cancel due to the weather, and rather than building tents and other temporary outdoor tasting spaces, we are focusing our energy on renovating our tasting spaces and guest suites, as well as hosting complimentary Virtual Tastings.
We are also launching a new website in April, which impacts when we can begin accepting reservations and rewards requests. We begin accepting reservations for Tours & Tastings again on April 7 for outdoor experiences beginning on May 1 and our Earth Week Vineyard Hike series hosted April 22-25. Members of Jordan Estate Rewards who are eager to book rewards before our new online member portal debuts can email us requests now for Private Tables beginning on May 1 and Overnight Stays after June 1. Online rewards requests will resume April 1.
While we don’t have a crystal ball, we remain optimistic that COVID-19 indoor dining restrictions will continue to be loosened, and indoor dining and wine tasting at 50 percent to full capacity will be allowed again in Sonoma County this summer. When that happens, we will reopen and be ready to share our newly remodeled Library and Cellar Room to guests, following safety and social distancing guidelines. We will begin accepting reservations for Library Tastings once the county health officer announces changes in business operating restrictions to 50 percent capacity. You can also email us to inquire about private virtual tastings, which are now available for booking.