Wine and Mountain image via Shutterstock
I wish I had the time to head down to Paso Robles this year for the inaugural Cabs of Distinction Grand Tasting. Paso Robles is a little off the beaten path, so they don’t get as much play as many other wine regions, but there’s an impressive track record for ageable Cabernets from the region and the Rhône Varietals are proving to be among the best in the country. This is a great time to visit the region and learn more about the wines and wineries like Eberle, L’Aventure, Robert Hall and Vina Robles, all members of the CAB (Cabernet and Bordeaux) Collective.
For 30 years, Santa Barbara vintners have come together each spring to celebrate their wines. The 2013 Santa Barbara Vintner’s Festival promise to be the best yet, with a weekend full of winemaker dinners, blending events, and unique opportunities to try some special bottles pulled from the libraries of some of the region’s top producers. There is so much going on, you’ll have to make a detailed plan to make sure you don’t miss anything as you travel from one welcoming winery to another.
Dry Creek Valley
The Dry Creek Valley is mecca for Zinfandel, and the Passport to Dry Creek Valley weekend is one of the best times to experience as many Zins as you can. Of course, there’s a lot more to the Dry Creek Valley than just Zin. There’s jamaican food at Amista Vineyards, grilled lamb at Ferrari-Carano, Peruvian food, BBQ, Seghesio’s sausage, oh, and of course, more great wines than you can shake a stick at. Just looking at the lineup of wines and experiences on offer is making me hungry, and sorry to be missing this great weekend! This event sells out every year, so don’t wait to buy your tickets.
When you live in Portland, you have to consider yourself lucky—the Willamette Valley is virtually your backyard. But even if you live there, I guess you can’t visit all the wineries (though I wouldn’t mind putting that to the test). But I guess that’s why there’s Vintage Oregon. Bringing together more than 75 of the state’s top wineries, Vintage Oregon is a great reason to visit Portland, not that they need another. (It’s a great city for walking tourism and food lovers, just FYI). The line-up of wineries attending has a really a fascinating mix of unknown, up-and-coming, and established wineries, so it should make for a great day of vinous discovery.
We began in Paso Robles and oddly we’re going to end in Paso Robles. Only odd because for a smaller region, they sure have some compelling events. That’s due in large part to the passionate producers who are not only out there promoting their wines but also supporting some great events, like Earth Day. There’s a weekend full of events on schedule, but everything revolves around the grand event happening at Pomar Junction Vineyard. With over 200 growers, vintners and chefs coming together to celebrate Paso Robles and the spirit of Earth Day, this promises to be one joyous occasion. There are lots of interesting events surrounding Earth Day, so be sure to take a look at everything that’s going on.