If you ask any wine enthusiast when is the best time to visit wine country, responses will vary. The reality is, it depends on you’re preference. Although spring offers a combination of warm weather and outdoor activities, the summer season brings events and large crowds set amongst beautiful green rolling landscapes. If you have an interest in “crush season,â€ when winemakers start to pick the grapes and prepare them for the crushing process before beginning fermentation, you should visit in the fall to see a winery in action.
Considering wineries around the region start to host several events during the spring season, here is a round up of some of the best wine tasting destinations to visit this spring.
Napa Valley is one of the most popular wine tasting regions in the United States. Attracting more than 4 million visitors each year from around the globe, the world-class winery includes more than 450 wineries for tastings.
A variety of wines are produced including Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc. Beyond the vineyards, you’ll enjoy plenty of outdoor activities including charming towns,Â restaurant hot spots, hotels and spas.
For a fascinating twist to the traditional wine tasting experience try the Nappa Valley Wine Train. With fine dining service and multiple course meals, the Napa Valley train offers scenery and ultimate relaxation aboard exquisitely restored vintage rail cars.
Sonoma County isÂ the second most popular wine region in the United States. You’ll find hundreds of wineries open for tastings, and quaint little towns with wine bars, restaurants, and boutique hotels. Â For wine tasting events near you, check out sonoma.com.
Situated in the Blue Ridge Mountains, King Family Vineyards is one of the best wedding venues in Virginia. With 28 acres of the 327-acre farm producing merlot, viognier, cabernet franc, chardonnay, and petit verdot vines, malbec and petit manseng, wine lovers and outdoor enthusiast flock here to not only taste wine but to enjoy free polo matches (Memorial day to mid-October).
Brooklyn, New York
Yes, you read it right, quality wine being made in a Brooklyn, one of the five boroughs of New York City. The Brooklyn Winery, founded by Brooklyn native Mark Snyder and two Â California winemakers, Robert Foley and Abe Schoener, The Red Hook Winery offers Â free tour (15 minutes) with any tasting 1 PM Saturday and Sunday only.
Walla Walla, Washington
Often called “the next Napa Valley,â€ most wineries in Walla Walla are small, family-run operations. From Walla Walla’s southside wineries, which are largely set among estate vineyards to the east side of town where wineries are based in historic converted WWII-era military buildings, there are plenty of wine tasting areas to explore.
The five wineries in Lubbock, TexasÂ offers everything from wine tasting and tours to stunning architecture. McPherson Cellars Winery is a fan favorite. The award-winning winery focuses on a variety of French, Spanish, and Italian grapes, most of which are grown within a 100-mile radius of Lubbock. To tops it all off most of the McPherson wines are rarely priced over $20.
More than 100 producers offer a variety of wine trails and wine-tasting tours. The Western Slope is a prime location for enjoying wine tasting. The palisades environment produces Chardonnay, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon.