US Vineyards To Visit (That Aren’t Napa)
For many, the idea of wine tasting conjures up images of France or Italy’s Tuscan Sun. But if you’re based in the US, you might want to whet your wine palette without the long flight or price tag. If you’re traveling to the states or planning a group trip on your home territory, consider a visit to a US vineyard! US wine is an attraction in its own right, and no, we’re not just talking about Napa.
Wine tasting and tourism are great activities on their own, but we also love adding a vineyard visit to many types of group or couples’ trips. If you’re looking for something for your bachelorette party itinerary, or even just a way to spice up a weekend adventure, vineyards are sure to please. Equal parts educational and downright fun, most offer tastings and tours of their facilities.
You’ll want to check ahead to see if you should reserve in advance or if you can simply show up. Most vineyards are set in picturesque valleys, so if you can’t make it for a full tour or tasting, consider buying a bottle and enjoying it on the very land where it was grown and produced. Maybe we’re biased, but wine simply tastes better outside.
While Napa reigns supreme, at least reputation wise, for U.S. vineyards, we decided to look beyond its buzz. Below are several U.S. vineyards to visit. Many are in areas that make for perfect group trips or bachelorette parties. Grab your girlfriends, arrange a designated driver, and get going to one of these gorgeous U.S. vineyards… that aren’t in Napa.
1 King Family Vineyards, Virginia
This stunning property is one that beckons you to bring a blanket, group of friends, and stay awhile (with a bottle or two). Take in the Blue Ridge Mountains at this family-owned establishment. The vineyard also hosts polo matches on grounds, and you can enjoy watching horses gallop or take a stroll to the stables for a closer look. Located just 15 minutes from Charlottesville, VA, this is a great vineyard to combine with a trip through Appalachia or in conjunction with a tour of over 33 gorgeous Virginia vineyards nearby.
Where to stay: Charlottesville’s Boar’s Head Inn is a stunning resort that pays homage to Virginia’s rich history. It also has a spa and golf course.
2 Anelare, Washington
The Columbia Valley of Washington rose to wine prominence in the 1980s and 90s (you’ve likely seen or heard of Columbia Crest). Today, nearly 60% of the region’s vineyards are dedicated to full-bodied reds. We love Anelare, whose small production, premium wine is matched by the gorgeous setting of their wine room. This classy venue makes the perfect setting for weddings and special occasions.
Where to stay: Your own decked out airstream! We suggest taking time to explore the Columbia River Valley, which is a beautiful drive from Seattle, at your own pace.
3 Barnstormer Winery, Seneca Lake, New York
The picturesque Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York is another great area for U.S. vineyards. We love this Barnstormer, located in an over 170-year old rustic barn. Inspired by the Barnstormer pilots of the 1920′s, their playful vineyard aims to entertain and provide guests with an unforgettable experience. A team of consultants will give you a tour through the vineyard and tasting room, where you can try 5 wines for just $5!
Where to stay: The Red Kettle Inn Bed & Breakfast. Upstate New York is full of charming B & Bs, we love this one!
4 Grape Creek Vineyards, Fredericksburg, Texas
Of all the things you associate with Texas, we’re willing to be wine Texas’ Hill Country happens to house an expansive wine region. If you’re unfamiliar, Hill Country is a larger area of Texas, (ok, everything is bigger in Texas), that touches both San Antonio and the western portion of Austin. It includes many springs, hills, and interesting flora and fauna. Thanks to the hills, you have valleys, enter wine! As mentioned, the area is massive, so you’ll want to do your research before planning your trip. We recommend visiting Grape Creek Vineyards, a 100-acre Texas hill country estate and winery with romantic Tuscan-inspired tasting rooms. They also host live music and have a restaurant on site.
Where to stay: We recommend Baron’s Creekside, a log-cabin village located near several vineyards.
5 Von Stiehl Winery, Wisconsin
Wisconsin is known for cheese, and since cheese pairs perfectly with wine, you may have just landed on your next wine destination! This historic vineyard is the oldest in WI and its classic tasting room on the National Register of Historic Places. Visit their 10,000 square foot production facility, then enjoy a glass on the outdoor terrace with its relaxing Lake Michigan views.
Where to stay: Hotel Stebbins is a historic, owner-operated hotel overlooking Lake Michigan.
There are so many stunning US vineyards to visit that aren’t in Napa! Interested in booking a wine tour as part of your group trip? We’re happy to help at Shefari.
Did you enjoy this post? Check out our top picks for an ultimate girl getaway… European style.