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There is more to California wine than the Napa Valley. Some of the state’s most renowned wine production areas are within day-tripping distance of LA, which means you can be sipping a world-class chardonnay in Santa Barbara by lunchtime. Let someone else do the driving, and leave more room for wine tasting, with one of these guided wine tours near Los Angeles.
Paso Robles is the biggest producer of one of California’s biggest wine exports: zinfandel. On this half-day tour you’ll learn more about this varietal alongside others common in the area, such as cabernet sauvignon and syrah. Bouncing between three different wineries, your guide will fill you in on the significance and history of each area, including why Paso Robles’s unique climate makes it perfect for the grapes that grow here. You’ll leave with some new friends and an increased appreciation for the region’s wine production.
Starting in the city itself, your hosts Stephen and Justin will collect you from Santa Monica Pier in their sunshine-orange VW van, before whizzing you up the coast to Malibu. Starting at a local tasting room, you’ll get to sample wines from a range of California regions, accompanied by a cheese platter. From here, you’ll head along the Pacific Coast Highway, stopping at lesser-known local spots for the best views in the area. Don’t forget to grab some pictures with your memorable ride before returning to Santa Monica, where you can stay at one of the city’s many luxury hotels.
This tour will take you from the city to the Temecula wine region in no time. Covering four wineries, you’ll taste plenty of award-winning wines common to the Mediterranean-like region. Get familiar with varietals such as sangiovese, montepulciano and viognier, which you can sample while nibbling from meat and cheese platters. A relaxing and informative day that will leave you with an impressive amount of knowledge about lesser-known wines.