3rd Generation Farmers Tour

In this 3-day weekend itinerary, wineries marked in green are open to the public. Wineries marked in red require appointments. Bullet point suggestions are drive-by viewing and/or optional stops. OVERNIGHT STAY & MORNING COFFEE:   BURLINGTON HOTEL, Port Costa DINNER: BULL VALLEY ROADHOUSE               AFTER DINNER DRINKS: WAREHOUSE CAFE Salvestrin ~ Very nice Cabs over a decade of vintages. Historic location. LUNCH: NAPA VALLEY OLIVE OIL MFG … Continue reading 3rd Generation Farmers Tour

Napa Architecture Tour

In this 3-day weekend itinerary, wineries marked in green are open to the public. Wineries marked in red require appointments. Bullet point suggestions are drive-by viewing and/or optional stops. Figure a minimum of 40 sites by which you will at least want to drive. Surely a full weekend; maybe even three or four days. A serviceable pair of binoculars wouldn’t go amiss, and a camera … Continue reading Napa Architecture Tour

Sierra Foothills Seasons

HARVEST ~ SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER Visiting any wine producing region during harvest is both exciting and a little off-putting. The winery people do have other priorities when grapes start arriving at the crusher. My choice for best place to be during harvest is the Sierra Foothills. For one thing the drama of weather, and its effect on the year’s grape crop, is more intense above … Continue reading Sierra Foothills Seasons

Carmel Walking Tour

TASTE MORGAN Best all-stainless Chardonnay in the business. All the wines are well-balanced and fruity, but with a track-record for bottle-aging. PN and CH from top vyds in the Highlands. Grassy SB; wonderful Riesling. WRATH As in Steinbeck’s Grapes of …   Originally TX oil money. Own some 70 acres in the Santa Lucia Highlands. Friendly tasting room and some pretty good PN at modest prices. … Continue reading Carmel Walking Tour

Visiting Wineries – The Protocols

REASON TO GO Vacation visits and day trips to wine growing regions are among the top tourist attractions in California. Over twenty million visits were made in 2010. The opportunity to escape city pressures for a period of leisurely country driving is always a treat. Wineries provide depth to anyone’s experience of an area through their connection to history, climate, politics, geology, economics, psychology, biology, … Continue reading Visiting Wineries – The Protocols

Sonoma History

First there were Pomo Indians. Peaceful, self-sufficient Native Americans, who for 3,000 years developed techniques of weaving reeds into some of the most beautiful and functional containers ever seen. Some of their baskets were designed for holding liquids, and they would even weave small boats for crossing rivers. Then, and this is important, there were Russians. The first vinifera grapes in Sonoma County were planted … Continue reading Sonoma History

Central Coast – U.S. Comparison

CHARDONNAY VS. NAPA AND SONOMA Telling apart two $10 California Chardonnays is usually a matter of quality rather than regional style. At that level grapes are very likely to have been combined across several regions. Chardonnays costing $35 per bottle retail, however, are much more likely to start revealing regional signatures. Napa, Sonoma, and the Central Coast all offer different characteristics, and separate styles. Napa’s … Continue reading Central Coast – U.S. Comparison

Central Coast: Getting There

Technically the Central Coast AVA runs from San Francisco to Los Angeles. We have chosen, for our purposes, to treat the Region as Santa Barbara County west of Lake Cachuma, San Luis Obispo County west of the San Andreas Fault in Parkfield, most of Monterey County, and a small piece of San Benito County surrounding Hollister. We’re going to handle Santa Cruz County separately in … Continue reading Central Coast: Getting There