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I needed to unwind, so my wife and I recently took a quick trip to San Francisco. We had a blast, especially during our day trip to Sonoma. We always have fun in the wine country. How can you not?
What made our trip even better was that we were able to save $$ with our Chase Sapphire Preferred on wine tastings! What, what. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is a Visa Signature card, and with that comes extra benefits. One of those benefits is free wine tastings in Sonoma. Winning.
That’s right, if you hold a Visa Signature card, you can receive:
- Two complimentary tastings per cardholder
- Savings on wine and non-wine purchases same day in Tasting Room
- Savings on Reserve tasting and special wine and food pairings
However, benefits vary from winery to winery, so you should call ahead if you want to know exactly what the Visa Signature perks are at a specific winery. From our experience, we received 2 for 1 tastings at the participating wineries we visited. They knew about the Visa Signature program, and were friendly when we mentioned it. Each tasting sampled 6 wines, so between us, we got 12 wine tastings for $10 at 3 different wineries. That’s value!
You can see the list of over 60 wineries in Sonoma that participate in the program here. Here are the wineries we visited.
The first winery we went to was Gundlach Bundschu, and the wine we tasted was top notch! It was our favorite wine of the trip. I especially enjoyed the pinot noir.
GunBun had great views of the countryside and it overlooked a pond. It was a scenic place to enjoy a bottle of wine. The tastings inside were more like drinking in a cave, but the staff was great, and gave us many recommendations on other wineries to visit, and restaurants to eat at (I’ll be doing a separate post on where we ate in Sonoma and San Francisco).
Bartholomew Park is the little sister winery to Gundlach Bundschu, basically their boutique. We ran into a group of 6 girls from Austin here that were having a great time, and we ended up chatting with them for a while. Always cool to run into people on vaca from where you live, but that seems to happen a lot with Austin.
Hawkes winery was located in Sonoma’s town square. I don’t actually think they participate in the Visa Signature program, but we were given a 2 for 1 tasting coupon from the girl helping us at Gundlach Bundschu.
We really enjoyed the chic modern design (what am I saying) of the tasting room, and had a blast talking to Douglas. A perk to this spot is that they do their own olive oil in house, and it’s excellent. We went to town on the fresh bread samples and olive oil. Don’t judge, we bought a bottle.
Visa Signature Cards
You most likely already hold one, two, or maybe three Visa Signature cards in your wallet. To see if you have a Visa Signature card, just look at the bottom right corner of your card and it will have “Signature” under the Visa logo. Here’s a list of Visa Signature cards:
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (EXPIRED)
One of the best travel cards on the market, with transfer partners like airlines (Southwest, United, British Airways, Etc.), Hotels (IHG, Hyatt), and rail partners (Amtrak), this card is incredibly flexible. And, with a sign-up bonus of 40,000 miles, it’s a great way to get closer to a free vacation!
Great benefits, including its categories of “5% cashback,” which change every quarter. If you have a Chase Sapphire card, that “cashback” becomes Ultimate Rewards points.
Great for flyers of United, it will allow you to board the plane before most passengers, get lounge passes, and waive bag fees. Check your United account online, or a local Chase branch for the best offer.
British Airways Visa
A great card for those who fly OneWorld, since British Airways’ Avios Miles are distance based, making short-distanced award flights a great redemption value.
B of A Alaska Airlines
Alaska Airlines’ miles are great because of the breadth of partners Alaska has acquired over the years, across many alliances.
Hilton HHonors Reserve Visa
This card is incredible, since it gives you Gold status just for having the card, meaning free breakfast every time you stay at a Hilton. Plus two free weekend certificates after meeting the minimum spending requirement.
More options are:
- Capital One Venture
- Nordstrom Notes
- Priceline Rewards Visa
- Holland America
- NFL Extra Points
- Merrill Lynch Visa
Having a Visa Signature card can help you save money in a variety of ways, one them being wine tastings in Sonoma. I always love finding little unexpected savings. It made our day trip to Sonoma even better.
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