Amador Vintners presents Behind the Cellar Door on March 2-3

WINTER PROVIDES A BIT OF a lull for many in the wine industry. Vines fall into a dormant state, conserving energy and resources for the long winter days. Cellar workers quietly monitor the precious “nectar of the Gods” they put into barrels after last year’s harvest.

As the sun begins to slowly warm the vines spanning across the rolling Sierra Foothills, grasses grow up under the vineyards, creating a blanket of green across sprawling acres of hillsides. This is the first sign for winemakers and vineyard managers to return to their posts.

Vineyards are pruned to make way for new growth while winemakers test, taste and torment over their latest vintage waiting to be bottled.

Whether a casual fan or experienced oenophile, this is also a great time to visit Amador Wine Country. Located in the historic foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains (just 45 minutes east of Sacramento), the beauty of the fertile foothills combined with the quiet activity of in the wineries provides the perfect setting to enjoy a weekend of wine tasting.

If it wasn’t enough to visit any weekend and enjoy the world-class wine and warm hospitality of Amador, two springtime events may provide a little more incentive.

Behind the Cellar Door, held March 2-3, is more than just another food and wine event. It’s also your chance to experience the art of winemaking first hand at more than 40 Amador County wineries. Having a slightly more educational focus, your ticket is the key to open our cellar doors and enjoy seminars from acclaimed winemakers, taste wines aging in the barrel and enjoy food pairings perfectly crafted by local chefs.

As the weather begins to warm a bit, the Amador Four Fires Festival (May 4) showcases all that Amador Wine Country has to offer.

Four Fires is a new kind of wine and food festival celebrating four wine regions that inspire the award-winning winemaking and wine growing of Amador County (Italy, Spain, Southern France and Heritage California) paired with international traditions of open flame cuisine.

Take in a seminar, listen to live music, shop at more than 25 artisan vendors, enjoy cuisine from talented local chefs and taste over 200 wines from more than 50 wineries. It’s all included at this one-of-a-kind festival.

Whether you visit over a weekend on your own or participate in one of these fantastic events you are sure to enjoy a getaway to Amador Wine Country.

World-class wine from more than 40 local producers, charming inns and B&Bs, acclaimed restaurants and distinguished history abound in Amador County. To plan your trip, visit AmadorWine.com

— Jack Gorman

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