Photo Credit: Unsplah | @ Kym Ellis
5 Best Wine Destinations In The US Outside Napa Valley
While Napa Valley is the most prominent domestic wine destination, there are other wine destinations in the United States worth visiting, Here are five other regions to try!
1. Finger Lakes, New York
Located in Central New York, the Finger Lakes Region: voted as the best wine destination in 2018 by a USA Today poll.
The Finger Lakes wine region is home to more than 120 wineries and is the biggest wine producer in New York State.
White wines, including Riesling and Gewurztraminer, are popular in this region, but the area is famed for its red varieties such as Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot.
The Finger Lakes wine region attracts visitors from all over the world, but not just for the grapes. The region is home to a ton of breweries, distilleries, and cideries.
Not sure where to start? We recommend Anyela’s Vineyards in Skaneateles, which is a favorite among locals and visitors alike.
2. Grand Valley, Colorado
Don’t sleep on Colorado! The state is more than its cannabis tourism and outdoor adventures.
At over 4,000 feet in elevation, Grand Junction and the Grand Valley AVA on your must-visit list for tasting wine.
Colorado’s wines will taste different from wines from other wine destinations, including Napa Valley, Bordeaux in France, or the Barossa Valley in Australia. Its sea level is the primary reason.
Colorado’s humidity is very low, and its soils are quite alkaline, which will make the wines unique like the Colorado Merlot variety. The skins develop an intriguing array of spice from high altitude training for some really good and fascinating wines.
3. Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
More than two dozen wineries are scattered throughout this region located in the Blue Ridge Mountains to the east and the Alleghenies to the west.
The combination of fertile soil and a warm growing season lends the region an abundance of varietals, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zinfandel, and many others.
Planning on a visit? We recommend Chester Gap Cellars. Located at an elevation of over 1,000 feet, there’s an open-air patio with the most spectacular views to overlook the mountains.
4. Texas Hill Country, Texas
Everything is bigger in the Lone Star State, which is especially true in its wine region.
Spanning across nine million acres west of Austin and San Antonio, Texas Hill Country is the second largest AVA in the nation.
You’ll have no problem picking a winery. There are more than 50 wineries to choose from in a region known for its heat-loving varietals, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Tannat (the national grape of Uruguay).
Your first stop in this region should be to Kai Simone Winery. It’s one of the newest in the region that just so happens to be Black and woman-owned!
5. Willamette Valley, Oregon
Willamette Valley is home to two-thirds of Oregon’s wineries and vineyards. This popular wine destination is known as one of the premier Pinot Noir producing areas in the world because of the region’s maritime climate.
There’s no place better to start than Abbey Creek Vineyard where hip hop, wine, and chill is the motto.
Abbey Creek Vineyard was founded by Bertony Faustin: the first known Black winemaker in Oregon.