Yesterday, my company altogether went to Wine Country (Sonoma to be exact) for wine tastings–probably the nicest thing I’ve ever done with a company. We went to three wineries on an absolutely gorgeous day, on what would be my first trip to wine country, and hopefully not my last. =)
The first place we went to as Viansa, where we started off with a small tour with our guide explaining the wine making process, particularly how grapes grew and how they were harvested and developed, and a little of how affective weather is on the grapes. Afterwards we had our first wine tasting, where we learned “how to taste wine”, doing first a tipping of the glass to inspect the body and color of the wine, next the swirling of the wine to release its bouquet, then the smelling of the wine, an initial rinse of the mouth of the wine, and finally a finish of the wine to get the full taste of it. Since it was my first time at a tasting, I found it fascinating, but my colleagues seemed to have it all already down pretty well. =)
After a nice meal there, we went on to another winery owned by the same company as the first. The tasting there went fairly quickly and I didn’t find I liked the wine as much as the first place, but they did have a very interesting display of gigantic wine barrels (one of which held something like 59,000 gallons of wine and was almost two stories high!). A short stop there altogether before moving on to our last stop: Gloria Ferrer.
At our last stop, we sat outside, the company altogether, and we ordered a couple rounds of champagnes of various kinds. With a toast to the company to start, we enjoyed our time there with good champagne, a beautiful view, and pleasant conversation.
All in all, a wonderful outing and an absolutely beautiful day. I’ve never been very much into alcoholic drinks, but I got to enjoying an occasional beer in Poland and in Sonoma I feel I rather much enjoyed the occasion for wine drinking. I think I’ll stick to my passion for teas on the whole, but I have to say I enjoyed the day very much. I’m looking forward to someday sharing this experience with my friends who come to visit me in San Francisco, as I think it makes for a great occasion for getting together and simply enjoying being.
When we wife and I go wine tasting (always with people from out of state), the first stop is Viansa. It’s a good winery for visiting, as you found out. Another good touring one in Napa is Mondavi.
Thanks for the tip! Now that I feel “introduced” to it all, I have been telling friends about it and am looking forward to them coming to SF. I will definitely be trying out Mondavi next time I have a chance to go tasting. =)