If you could take just one photo: Deck overlooking vineyard
As you walk alongside the Pinot Noir Vineyard on your left to the elevated wooden deck that adjoins Navarro’s tasting room, you hear the cheer of glasses serving one of California’s most delicious yet hard to find wines. You can’t help but imagine yourself on the deck, swirling a glass of Gewurztraminer from your freshly opened bottle, and gazing at the peaceful vineyard expanding from beneath your feet away to the north, alive with activity: chirping birds, buzzing honeybees, the occasional babydoll sheep (which sustainably replaced the tractors for mulching purposes), and the bark of one of several very happy winery dogs. Navarro has established a wonderful following from folks who want to explore a bit further than Napa or Sonoma and discover more. Upon seeing one of the more thoughtful tasting rooms to be found, friendly wooden benches on a deck overlooking their vineyard, and each of Navarro’s unique and expressive wines glimmering there before you, you’ll want to cancel your other tasting appointments for the day. Hand select your favorite bottle, purchase a recommended cheese and bread, step out onto the deck and really get to know your wine.February 1, 2012 Like Add a Comment
Were it a country, California would be the world's fourth largest producer of wine. Grape-seekers can expect to explore a patchwork of wine countries woven into radically different landscapes and climates. While there are plenty of big corporate wineries with slick tasting rooms, the Golden State is also home to a staggering number of down-to-earth, small-production operations.
For this contest, our editors chose their favorite California vineyards and wineries for writers and photographers to cover (and we even threw in a few outside of California). Our criteria: the quality of the wine, uniqueness of the tasting experience or tour, and beauty of the setting and ambiance (if we missed your favorite, let us know at email@example.com). Feel free to enter as many times as you like. Please note that while there are no residency requirements, Trazzler will not be providing transportation to Carmel or Monterey, so you'll need to be a CA local or able to make your own way.
Sponsored by the Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau and Tradewinds Carmel, Carmel's premiere hotel, a serene Balinese-influenced retreat that has been featured in Architectural Digest. Monterey County is one of the largest wine-growing and producing regions in California, yet the small scale of the tasting rooms ensures that visitors get a personalized, intimate experience they won’t find in other wine areas.
Writing prize: a 2-day hotel stay at the Tradewinds Carmel, two passports to the Carmel Wine Walk-By-the-Sea, and a $100 writing contract to cover Monterey County's wine scene.
Photography prize: a photo-op-friendly $150 meal at Monterey's gorgeous and historic Restaurant 1833.
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