Aging Pinot Noir in the Oldest Wine Cellar in Beaune, France, February 2017
Petite Sirah Hang on the Vine in St. Helena, California, September 2016
Chalk Caves of Champagne, France, March 2017
Peacock Crossing in Napa Valley, May 2017
Rainy Vineyard Scape in Basque Country Spain, November 2017
Fall Vineyard Picnic in Cahors, France, October 2016
Jonathan Schroeder, The Head Wine Geek
ALWAYS go with the recommendations the locals give you! Not only was Wistub du Sommelier in Bergheim (Alsace) recommended by guidebooks and wine magazines prior to our trip, but we had two restauranteurs and three wineries recommend it when we asked for their recommendations on where to eat! Best ... recommendations ... EVER!
Enjoying the "action" on my favorite wine trip! We rented our own boat and spent a week cruising the Canal du Midi in Languedoc through vineyards, wine villages, castles and more! And with a boat that cruised all of 5 mph with only two directions to choose from, enjoying a glass Sangria as we go through Minervois and Corbières. The best part was that in many villages, you could just pull over, park the boat, and walk to the winery, visit the local weekly market for phenomenal food, or have a great picnic in a beautiful setting!
Take the road less-traveled, away from the big tourist wineries and listen to recommendations from the locals! While exploring the Loire Valley, we had a phenomenal Bourgeuil at dinner one night and the restaurant was able to arrange an appointment at Maison Audebert et Fils with Jean-Claude, the owner! We were WAY away from all of the chateaux that the tour buses visit and had a great time experiencing his wines! He had so much fun with us that he was bringing out lots of his special wines for us to try! Always love visiting wineries like these - the wines are like the wine-makers' children and they just love showing them off to those who are excited to try them!
Going to local festivals while traveling is always a great way to REALLY experience local life. But if you go to a WINE festival, it's even greater! For the total sum of €3/person in Eguisheim, Alsace we got enter the village's harvest festival and try wines from a dozen local wineries (including Grand Cru wines!), enjoy dancing, traditional costumes, delicious local cuisine, and an opportunity to hang with the locals!