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A large outdoor seating area next to a house. The house is painted white with a wooden thatched roof. In the distance is a flat landscape with grass.

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Our favorite California wine country houses

Full-bodied, earthy, and sparkling homes from our weekly original series, House Calls

Ahh, wine country. Though our weekly original home tours series, House Calls, has taken us to New York, Chicago, Paris, Berlin, and other metropolises worldwide, the homes we’ve visited in California’s wine country have a special allure.

For starters, there’s the sun-kissed setting. Then there are the houses themselves: A classic ranch on a tight lot that hides a verdant escape; a stately Victorian painstakingly restored; and a prototypical wine country retreat, where a pair of interior designers indulge every sense.

As we celebrate the magic of Northern California’s wine country region, we felt we’d be remiss if we didn’t serve up some of our greatest hits from the region.

Two men sit by the side of a swimming pool. There is an outdoor seating area behind them with a couch, table, and arm chairs. A dark brown house is adjacent to the outdoor seating area. Jake Stangel

A couple turns modest ranch house into wine country retreat

When interior designer Jay Jeffers and creative director Michael Purdy went in search of their slice of wine country heaven, they’d set their sights on something with land that sprawled. What they found (and fell in love with) was a 1,200-square-foot ranch house on a relatively tight lot in St. Helena, California, not far from the town’s main thoroughfare. It had vineyard views without the hassle of vine upkeep—and a pool around which the couple has oriented their home life here.

A kitchen with two large windows. There is a table, oven, stove, and painted aqua upper cabinets with glass doors revealing many dishes, bowls, and glasses on shelves. The lower cabinets are painted blue. Kim Carroll

An 1870s Victorian farmhouse finally shines in Northern California

Every couple of years, we’ve followed a home’s renovation process from beginning to end. Our first ever, in Brooklyn, New York, whet our appetite for more, and in 2016, we tracked progress as a couple revamped their circa-1870 Victorian farmhouse—which the couple described as an “extreme fixer”—in Healdsburg, California. The final installment of that edition of our Renovation Diary series revealed a warm, eclectic home with no shortage of paint-color inspiration.

An outdoor seating area next to a house with a long table, chairs, and couches. A tree hangs over the outdoor area. In the distance is a flat landscape with green grass.

Growing a California wine country dream home

Interior designers Jeff and Tray Schlarb’s sprawling escape, also in the town of Healdsburg, ticks all the boxes when one thinks of the quintessential wine country property. Acres of grapes? Check. Rustic interiors with exposed-beam ceilings? Check. Ample space outside for entertaining and relaxing? Check. Turning around the farmhouse and vineyard here took the couple only 12 months.