Ready to plan a California Wine Tour to the Sierra Foothills? Beautiful scenery, quiet country roads, and award-winning California wineries are yours to enjoy in this exciting region.
During the mid-1800s the California Gold Rush brought thousands of people to this area from all over the world. Some of those who flocked to the California gold fields from Europe brought grapes and planted them here.
One of these grapes was Zinfandel, which has since become the flagship wine of the Sierra Foothills. The soil in this region is well suited for producing “BIG” Zinfandels. These Zinfandels are especially robust and full bodied.
There are more than 100 wineries in the Sierra Foothills waiting to welcome you to their tasting rooms. In addition to the many award-winning Zinfandels, the they offer high quality Sauvignon Blanc, Barbera, Sangiovese, Syrah, Ports, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and Primitivo.
Amador County is one of our favorite places to spend a day or two tasting. There are some wonderful wines being produced in this region. It’s a beautiful area with rolling hills and quiet roads. You will find some charming bed and breakfast inns if you want to spend the night. The tasting rooms are friendly and tasting is usually free.
There are many wineries located in the heart of California’s historic Gold Rush area. Many are located in the small town of Murphys where you will also find great restaurants and charming accommodations. Another popular activity in Calaveras County is exploring the caverns of the region. There are several that are open to the public. Exploring the caverns can be an adventurous outing and it’s educational as well.
El Dorado County
El Dorado County wineries is located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and are known as “wineries with an altitude”. This is a scenic area with many wonderful mountain tasting rooms to explore. Most are located in and around the mountain towns of Placerville and Fair Play. This is another great place for a getaway.
Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful places. It’s a great destination to spend some time. While visiting Lake Tahoe be sure to check out the tasting rooms around the lake. You can also enjoy a scenic ride to wineries an hour or so from the lake. This is a popular tourist destination known for snowboarding and skiing in the winter and for water sports during the summer. It’s easy to spend a week here and still not see everything. Vacation rentals are popular, but you’ll also find campgrounds, hotels, and bed and breakfast inns.
Mariposa and Tuolumne Counties
Tuolumne County extends to the top of the Sierra Nevada’s Sonora Pass and includes half of Yosemite National Park, home of spectacular granite mountains and large waterfalls. Visit one of the most impressive sights in California and also take time to enjoy tasting in nearby Mariposa and Tuolumne counties. This is an area that is well worth exploring.
Nevada County is the perfect tasting destination. The magnificent mountains, historic towns, and natural beauty will add to your enjoyment. Grass Valley and Truckee are the two largest towns in this area. You’ll find lots of other fun things to do in Nevada County.
Placer County wineries are located in and around the town of Auburn. This region is noted for its fine Syrah and Italian varieties. After Prohibition, the wine industry died out in Placer County but has been enjoying a regrowth during recent years. Have fun tasting at some of these newer wineries.
If you are planning a tasting trip to the Sierra Foothills, consider staying at one of these fabulous California Bed and Breakfast Inns:
Foxes Inn of Sutter Creek
The Foxes Inn is a lovely Bed and Breakfast located in Amador County. It’s a charming place with great accommodations and friendly hosts. It’s just a short walk to the historic downtown area of Sutter Creek where you will find antique shops, unique boutiques, tasting rooms, and restaurants.
Dunbar House is a wonderful bed and breakfast inn located in the historic town of Murphys in Calaveras County. You are within walking distance to wineries, restaurants, and charming shops. Explore the town on foot as well as the 10 or so tasting rooms scattered throughout the town.
Yosemite National Park
Anyone who has not been to Yosemite, needs to plan a trip soon. The scenery is absolutely breathtaking! Accommodations in the park range from tent camping to a luxury resort. You can even reserve a vacation rental. Yosemite is a popular vacation spot that attracts large numbers of tourists from across the country and around the world. It’s a good idea to make overnight reservations in advance.
Explore Caverns in California’s Gold Country
Why not combine a tasting trip with a tour of a fascinating cavern? There are a number of unique caverns located throughout Calaveras and Amador Counties making it easy to visit both wineries and caves during a visit to the Sierra Foothills. Learn more about the caverns of this region by
clicking on the link above.
Recommended Restaurants in the Sierra Foothills
After a day of wine tasting in Amador County, head for Taste Restaurant in Plymouth to enjoy fine dining in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. This small restaurant offers large and small plates to satisfy all appetites. This is our choice for the best restaurant in Amador County.
V Restaurant and Bar
If you are in Calaveras County, plan to dine at V Restaurant and Bar.This is a great restaurant. The food is fabulous and the service is wonderful. Located in the charming town of Murphys, combine a tasting trip to Murphys with fine dining at V’s. This is a restaurant that you will want to return to . . . often!
If you have experienced wine tasting in the Sierra Foothills, please leave a comment below. We would love to hear your opinions.