A Day Well Spent at Cornerstone Sonoma
Cornerstone Sonoma is so fabulously unique you can have a day well spent where you can shop, wine taste, stroll through amazing gardens and enjoy a delicious farm-to-table lunch in one stop. The stunning setting with its hillside views and serene pond is a complete escape, and you are likely to leave with treasure as interesting as the location.
Cornerstone Gardens & Horticulture
Sunset Magazine Gardens and Outdoor Test Kitchen are now at Cornerstone, and they are so inspiring. Luckily you can answer that call for horticultural adventure by stopping into Tesoro, with its swoon-worthy collection of flowers, plants and containers, Potter Green and Co., which offers fountains, birdbaths, chimes, outdoor fire pits and décor to make your garden a comfortable and creative haven. I especially like stonemason Michael Eckerman’s larger-than-life-size dog sculptures.
Cornerstone Shopping & Antiques
Chateau Sonoma is like a trip to France, everything is elegant and élan. Owner Sarah Anderson travels the French countryside and Paris flea markets, bringing one-of-kind antiques and collectibles back to wine country. There is Juliska crystal and dinnerware, exquisite linens, and tote bags perfect for the farmers market. When Eryka graduated from 8th grade we bought her a white iron bed made in the 1880s that Sarah found in an old barn in the south of France. Now, all these years later, it is in Eryka and AJ’s home, and will one day be their baby Luna’s bed. Chateau Sonoma is a great place for heirlooms.
Two of the newer shops at Cornerstone are The Loop and Nomad Chic, each offering women’s fashion forward clothes and accessories. The Loop specializes in designs made in the United States, which the owners select because they are “classic, stylish and luxurious,” while the Nomad Chic has an evolving collection of apparel, jewelry and home accessories from around the globe. Both shops focus on independent designers, so they offer items you won’t find in other stores.
Pop into Artefact Design and Salvage and you’ll discover “once in a lifetime objects” that owner Dave Allen scours for throughout the world – literally. He has a line of stone items handmade in Java ranging from $10 soap dishes to $800 bathtubs. “Stone works well with anything, from farmhouse to modern to traditional,” Allen said. The village where these items were made is so remote when he went there, “No one had ever seen an American before.”
There are very expensive items, like a carved wooden Buddha for $3,800, but there are very affordable items in the mix, too. Once I bought a heavy cast iron mermaid that now lives on our rock wall. We named her Madison, she’s adorable, and she didn’t break the budget. Allen’s favorite item is a floral clamp he signed himself that allows you to show off almost anything from the garden like a piece of art, including a willowy tree branch.
Country by Eurasian Interiors offers a fusion of European and Asian antiques, mixed in with reasonably priced gift items and cards. I have a tiny birdhouse made of wood with a tin roof that I scored there for only $10.
Cornerstone Wine Tasting & Restaurants
There are three wine tasting venues, Keating Wines, Meadowcroft Wines and Poseidon Vineyards & Obsidian Ridge, as well as Prohibition Spirits Distillery Experience. Jima and I think that Park 121 Cafe is one of the best restaurants in Sonoma, and we keep hoping Chef Bruce Riezenman will serve dinner eventually. Full disclosure, though, many years ago when he first started his Park Avenue Catering Company he was the chef for our wonderful winery wedding recption. And, small world, when I lived in New York I frequently dined at his father’s restaurant, Henry’s End.
Details: Cornerstone Sonoma is located at 23570 Arnold Drive, Sonoma. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Garden hours 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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