Wine Tours 101

Written by Joy MacKay
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Feeling a little clueless about the wine country and its vineyards? Stop fretting, you don't have to be a connoisseur of fine wines to educate yourself and enjoy the wine country. You just need to know a few tips.

The first lesson is to relax. Casual clothes are the norm at wineries; certain wineries will expect nicer casual clothes, but none will turn you away for being dressed for the weather. Make sure that you are comfortable, and that you have brought a sweater, in case of strong winds or overcast weather.

The Basics of Wine Tours 101

Perhaps the most important part of the wine tour is the tasting session afterwards. Your goal in this session is still continual learning. Don't gulp down your free glass of wine--the wine is yours, but you lose the lesson. Listen to your guide as they explain the wonderful properties of that particular wine, and you'll be miles more educated at your next gathering where wine is served.

Most of all, pay attention to where the wineries are, especially if you decide to revisit some of them after your tour. Remember that wineries are scattered throughout the valleys, from the town of Sonoma, to the city of Napa, and the outlying smaller resort towns. Don't assume that because you want to visit two wineries, they will be close in proximity. Your wine tour agency should give you a map of the area, with wineries marked accordingly.

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