Video:Tips for Touring California Wine Countrywith Annie Browne
Touring California wineries is a fantastic way to taste the many varietals that come from this region. Watch this video from About.com to learn all about wine country.See Transcript
Transcript:Tips for Touring California Wine Country
Hi, I'm Annie Browne, co-founder of the Hoot 'n' Annie Wine and Adventure Blog. I'm here today at Edward Sellers Winery in Paso Robles, on behalf of About.com, to give you some tips for touring California wine country.
Region Options in California Wine Country
With several regions to choose from throughout the state, you'll want to do a little advance planning before embarking on your journey. Consider the following. Begin your planning by deciding on a region to visit. There are many in California, both large and small, so let your palate decide! If you're a fan of big Cabernets or crisp Chardonnays, then a trip to the Napa Valley is in order. However, if a light Pinot Noir is more your speed, Sonoma County would be a good choice. Perhaps you're a fan of Zinfandel or Rhone varietals; if this is the case, Paso Robles wine country won't let you down.
Picking Wineries to Visit in California
Once you've chosen the region you want to tour, it's time to identify what wineries you'd like to visit. If this is your first time through California wine country, Napa's V. Sattui Winery has a tourist-friendly tasting room and property, while Tobin James Winery in Paso Robles is a hot spot with great samplings of the region's varietals.
Making Reservations and Appointments in Wine Country
One quick note: Regardless of region, some wineries are appointment-only. Before driving all the way out to a winery, it's a good idea to call ahead or visit their website so you don't run into any unpleasant surprises.
Other Notes About California Wineries
The next thing to consider on your California wine country tour is the length of your stay. If you are visiting a region like the Napa Valley or Paso Robles, each with hundreds of wineries, making it a three- or four-day weekend will allow you to see the sights and get a good cross-section of the region's wine-related highlights. However, if you only have one day to spend in wine country, you might be better off choosing a smaller region, like Amador County in Northern California or Edna Valley on the Central Coast.
Vineyards and wineries in California are spread out, so you'll need to designate a sober driver, or arrange for transportation, such as a shuttle or limousine service. Beyond that, be sure to bring identification, as well as cash or credit cards. Each winery will charge a tasting fee, and will also verify that those sampling the wine are above the legal drinking age. As you continue to pack for your trip, choose clothes that are appropriate for the time of year and feel free to go for comfort, as California wineries do NOT have formal dress codes. California has wineries and vineyards in just about every area of the state, so there's most definitely something for everyone! Just be sure to plan ahead and your tour will be unforgettable.
Thanks for watching. To learn more, visit us on the web at About.com.