Add California Winery Experiences To Your Vacation List This Year
There is something wonderful about a vineyard trip. For starters, it involves the opportunity to sample critically-acclaimed wines and all the enjoyable travel experiences the overall journey entails. Picture seeing vines with purple fringes of grapes up close and to smell a bouquet of aromas lingering in the air. If planning your next travel destination, consider adding a California winery tour on your list. We have embraced the allure of a Coastal Road trip in the past for the journey yields spectacular views and fantastic wine. While many tend to flock to Napa Valley and Sonoma County, there are additional regions worth exploring now.
The Santa Lucia Highlands is one as it is noted as one of the crown jewels of California viticulture. The appellation highlights more than 6500 acres of prime vineyards and grows and produces the state’s best cool climate Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Syrah. It is situated on the elevated terraces of the Santa Lucia mountain range close to Monterey Bay. This area experiences a long and dry growing season that results in wines with singular depth and complexity.
Where To Visit
Comprising of four estate vineyards in the Santa Lucia Highlands that are sustainably planted, this second generation run winemaker covers more than 10 percent of the total acreage planted in the American Viticultural Area.
What To Try
Smith & Hook Proprietary Red Blend 2016
This full bodied red highlights aromas of blackberry and cherry with vanilla and toasted oak. The blend is 64% merlot, 19% petite syrah, 10% Malbec, 7% cabernet sauvignon.
Lucienne Smith Vineyard Pinot Noir 2017
With a limited number of cases available, this is a must. It features notes of raspberry, cherry and vanilla carrying a sweet spice flavor on the palate, leaving a smooth finish.
Lucienne Pinot Noir Doctor’s Vineyard 2017
One of my favorites as Doctor’s Vineyard involves warmer temperatures and higher winds than Hahn’s other estate vineyards. As a result, it produces riper more robust Pinot Noir with layers of cherry and citrus fruits along with brown spice and a lingering finish.
Hahn SLH Pinot Noir 2017
This Pinot Noir involves aromas of bright cherry and toasty oak with concentrated flavors of fruit and spice.