by Derek Moore
Set in the heart of Sonoma County Wine Country, Healdsburg blends small-town charm with world-class vistas and wines. The city of 11,275 is at the juncture of the Russian River Valley, Dry Creek Valley and Alexander Valley wine growing regions. Restaurants, shops, tasting rooms, galleries and bars line its famed plaza. Flowing along the city’s east side, the Russian River beckons people to wade in on hot summer days for an enjoyable swim or float.
Here are a few local spots visitors should add to their agenda.
The Matheson: To escape the plaza crowds head up to Roof 106, the third-floor bar and lounge that is part of The Matheson. Cocktails and dining are on a first-come, first-served basis. The main restaurant occupies the ground floor. There’s also a self-serve wine wall featuring wines on tap adjacent to the restaurant for those who prefer to stay on the go.
Location: 106 Matheson St., Healdsburg
Hours: 5-10 p.m., Monday-Thursday; noon-10 p.m., Friday-Sunday
More information: 707-723-1106, https://www.thematheson.com
Costeaux French Bakery: Founded in 1923, Costeaux French Bakery is one of the oldest bakeries in the county where patrons will find award-winning artisan bread, buttery croissants, classic chocolate chip cookies and St. Honoré cakes topped with rum-custard bonbons. Diners can enjoy bistro cuisine for breakfast or lunch or sip an espresso inside the popular café or the open-air patio.
Location: 417 Healdsburg Ave., Healdsburg
Hours: 7:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Wednesday-Sunday
More information: 707-433-1913, https://www.costeaux.com
Tuesdays in the Plaza: The town’s weekly summer concerts in the Healdsburg Plaza is from 6-8 p.m. every Tuesday until end of August. Here, you’ll find love entertainment and food vendors.
Location: Healdsburg Ave. and Matheson S.t, Healdsburg
Hours: 6-8 p.m., Tuesdays
More information: https://www.ci.healdsburg.ca.us/335/Tuesdays-in-the-Plaza