T+L Reports: Sonoma Goes Moma
Published: May 2009
What goes best with Syrah, Zinfandel, and Sauvignon Blanc?Conceptual art, of course. At Roshambo Winery in Healdsburg (3000 Westside Rd.; 707/431-2051; www.roshambowinery.com), award-winning vintages are paired with works by emerging California talents: Joe Leonard's tattoo-inspired paintings, a Shrinky Dink installation by Will Smith and Todd Barricklow, and Karen Carlo Salinger's oversized, phallic rubber sculptures. Photographer turned winery owner Naomi Johnson Brilliant hesitated before taking over the family vineyards with her husband, Tod. "I thought the wine industry was snobby, all about smoking cigars and playing golf," she says. So she built a modern exhibition space and tasting room in Sonoma County to lure budding oenophiles away from the usual cocktail haunts and to shake the winery-hopping circuit out of its swirl-and-sip complacency. The gallery—blond wood, poured concrete, Lucite, matte steel—couldn't be more of a departure from wine country's traditionally sedate, watercolor-landscape look. And no one even misses the cigars.