7 Tips on Planning a Wine Tasting Trip for Beginners
There are more than 8,000 wineries just in the United States alone. And there’s at least one in every state, from Florida all the way up to Alaska. So if you and your friends love wine, then there’s no reason to not go on a wine tasting trip.
Going on a wine tasting trip isn’t just about lounging around and drinking wine every day. It’s about bonding with your loved ones and learning and sharing experiences together.
But in order to make sure that you get the most out of your wine tasting trip, it’s important that you plan it well. Luckily for you, we’re here to help. So keep on reading and we’ll take you through everything that you’ll want to know!
1. Visit Wineries Early in the Day if You Can
You should plan your day so that you get to a winery that has good dining facilities when lunchtime comes around. It’s also ideal to visit wineries in the off-season and in the middle of the week.
The busiest times for wineries tend to be from the end of August to the end of October. So you shouldn’t expect the winemaker for more than a few brief moments if you go during those months.
It’s also important to note that many wineries are closed during holidays and they also might have limited availability during the off-season. You should always check the winery’s website or give them a call.
2. Don’t Visit More Than Three or Four Wineries in a Day
If you visit too many wineries in a day, then you and your group will end up feeling rushed and anxious. Wine is meant to be enjoyed and savored. So you should give yourselves plenty of time to hang out and sip the wine. Check out acidity in wine
Some wineries require appointments. However, they mainly do that because of limitations to their use permits. Or they might want to make sure that they have enough employees to serve all of their guests.
And some other wineries might have limited parking.
You can usually make an appointment the morning that you plan to visit. Although it’s always better to give more advance notice.
3. Make the Most of Your Trip
Some tours of wineries don’t just offer wine but also tasty food and dining experiences. That can include luxurious restaurant dining and picnics.
Make sure to take advantage of an outdoor picnic area or a restaurant. This will help to break up the day and allow you to enjoy a delicious meal and view.
If you’d like, you can also bring your own picnic lunch, purchase a bottle of wine at the winery’s store, and enjoy the view of the vineyards with your friends and loved ones.
Some wineries with restaurants even offer cultural experiences, too, such as beautiful architecture, art installations, and concerts.
4. Sample and Drink in Moderation
Remember, the spit bucket is there for a reason. It’s not considered impolite if you take a little sip and then spit it out in the bucket. It’s not necessary to swallow wine in order to taste it.
And that’s what you’re there for – tasting.
It’s also a wise move to drink a cup of water for every five ounces of wine that you drink. But most importantly, you should never taste and drive.
Over the course of the tour, the winery is going to offer you several samples. It can be very easy to drink a lot of wine without realizing it. Because of this, you should plan ahead and select a designated driver before you start the tour.
5. Be Creative
Whenever you get to a winery, see if you can ask about buying wines that are in the tasting room but aren’t commercially available in retail stores. There’s a good chance that there will be and those wines can also end up being really delicious.
Also, many wineries today now offer special “club” wines and older wines that aren’t normally available. These wines are usually made in small batches and usually taste delicious.
It’s always good to make sure that you have some cash on hand so that you can be ready to buy a bottle of wine when it speaks to you.
6. Go International
Turn your wine tasting trip into a true vacation by taking your friends across the border. And you don’t have to go all the way to the Champagne region in France to enjoy some delicious international wine.
For example, if you looked at a map of wineries in Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico, you’ll see all kinds of beautiful and unique vineyards. The important thing is to pick a location that you’ll be able to enjoy no matter what so that even if your trip doesn’t go as planned, you’ll still get to have some fun.
7. Prepare Questions
Having thoughtful and interesting questions will add to the value of your trip. You can start with questions asking about the people who started the vineyard and the story behind the property.
Most workers at wineries have plenty of knowledge and are extremely friendly to guests. And in smaller facilities, the person running the tasting room might actually be the winemaker as well.
The Importance of Planning Your Next Wine Tasting Trip
Going on a wine tasting trip is a great way to relax, enjoy vacations with friends, and learn all about the winemaking process. And by planning your trip, you’ll be able to make sure that everything goes smoothly.
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