Below the ski belt: Satellite ski towns

“Unless you have a family inheritance, or somehow snagged one of the few affordable rentals, living in a traditional ski town is a less viable option than ever,” observes Powder Magazine. “Unable to afford the old ones, young, adventurous people are making new ones.” Though a little farther from the ski slopes, so-called satellite ski […]

Amador Vintners: Expanding in the New Year

The Amador Vintners Association is expanding in the New Year with the acquisition of two of the county’s premier wine tasting events: Amador Four Fires Festival and the Barbera Festival. Bringing the two festivals under the Vintners Association umbrella increases the recognition of Amador Wine Country with visitors and vintners from throughout California. “We’re thrilled […]

Tahoe Tastings: Sip wine while cruising “Big Blue”

IMAGINE STANDING ON A LOVINGLY restored, 40-foot “woodie” on Lake Tahoe, holding a glass of Andis Wines 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, Dono dal Ciello 2014 Zinfandel or another regional varietal, and watching the sun set over the Sierra. This leisurely experience is now possible from June to October, thanks to Tahoe Tastings. A husband-and-wife team of […]

Tasting notes: Wine, pizza and music

SIERRA KNOLLS: WINE, PIZZA & MUSIC “What’s Up Friday?” returns April 21 at Sierra Knolls tasting room (10024, Linnet Lane in Auburn) with wine, fresh pizza from a wood-fired oven and music. The winery’s releases include a 2014 Primitivo and 2014 Petite Verdot. SierraKnollsWinery.com SIERRA STARR’S STELLAR GROWTH The Grass Valley winery now has three […]

Sierra Vintners’ wine trails on May 20, July 15 and September 23

THE FOOTHILLS HAVE SOME exceptional wine trail experiences on “roads less traveled”: “Grape Days of Summer” in Placer County, “Drink Pink” and “Big Crush” in Amador County, and “Passport” in El Dorado County, among others. Sierra Vintners, which includes wineries in Placer and Nevada Counties, is offering three regional wine trail experiences in 2017—in May, […]

Hotel Sutter: Where history meets comfort

ALONG WITH WATERING HOLES and movie houses, Gold Rush-era hotels have long been economic anchors for Mother Lode towns. Just as saloons such as the Golden Era lounge in Nevada City are being restored, historic hotels also are being renovated—helping to revitalize the downtowns and their surroundings. The Hotel Sutter in Sutter Creek (Amador County) […]

Tasting Notes: Andis, Avanguardia, Nevada City Winery & Sierra Starr

FOOTHILLS CELEBRATION Now in its 16th year, the Foothills Celebration in downtown Grass Valley is one of the region’s premier wine and food tasting events. Participants gather on Saturday, March 4, from 1-4 p.m., to sip wine from more than 20 foothills wineries while sampling delicacies from local restaurants, including favorite nibbles from their menus. […]

Bottle your own at Nevada City Winery on Nov. 19

On Saturday, November 19, Nevada City Winery will be holding its popular kick off for the holiday season: Bottle Your Own. Participants fill, cork, foil, and label their own wines. Winemaker Mark Foster and Founder Allan Haley have created two special blends, a Zinfandel and a Syrah. The label continues the Artist Series for Bottle […]

Tasting notes: Sierra Starr, Naggiar, Smith, Pilot Peak and Bent Metal

NAGGIAR VINEYARDS Naggiar is offering fully guided tours of its vineyard and winery in a new electric shuttle on weekends. SIERRA STARR’S GOLD MEDALS The winery has won double-gold or gold medals for most of the wines it has entered in tasting competitions this year. Sierra Starr won a double-gold for its 2012 Cabernet Franc […]

Amador Vintners: from “Roots to Wine”

AMADOR COUNTY’S MICRO-CLIMATES are as diverse as any in California, ranging from oak-studded hillsides at 900 feet to Sierra peaks that top 9,000 feet. Besides offering a year round playground—for cycling, hiking, fishing and other activities— the county’s terroir, climate and soils are ideal for growing premium wine grapes. The majority of Amador’s 3,700 vine […]

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