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European wineries in comparison to US Sonoma Valley wineries

European wineries in comparison to US Sonoma Valley wineries

Jun 27th, 2007, 06:22 AM
  #1  
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European wineries in comparison to US Sonoma Valley wineries

I also posted this message on the US board because I didn't know where was most appropriate.

I'm going to Sonoma with a group of friends this fall. I visited Napa Valley about 15 years ago before we had done extensive European travels and remember some of the more remote wineries as being quite lovely. Now, however, having done a lot of traveling in Europe and having visited lots of wineries there, I'm wondering if the hype of this area will meet my expectations. And, will the wineries still be interesting in comparison to what I've already seen.

If you've done both, I'd appreciate your thoughts. Thanks.
julies is offline  
Jun 27th, 2007, 06:27 AM
  #2  
ira
 
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Hi J,

>I'm wondering if the hype of this area will meet my expectations. <

Mind telling us what your expectations are?

>will the wineries still be interesting in comparison to what I've already seen.<

What have you seen, and how interesting was it?

Personally, I would rather taste wine than visit wineries.



ira is offline  
Jun 27th, 2007, 06:46 AM
  #3  
 
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Frankly, and IMO, "the hype" is no worse for Sonoma than it is for some of the places in Europe.

It is hard to answer this question without knowing what your expectations are.

Would you cancel your trip if everyone said your expectations won't be met? I hope you aren't that dependent on the opinions of a bunch of strangers like me.
Dukey is offline  
Jun 27th, 2007, 07:04 AM
  #4  
 
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I had a month of french, NZ and Sonama wineries a couple of years ago (tough huh) and best US tasting was in the central square in Sonama at a wine library where I paid a dollar a glass for any wine. Well worth it. Generally found the wineries (on a tour) a bit so so and had to ask for specific wines as they keep the good stuff away from the bus trips.

But if you are going to the boutiques and know your stuff you will get a welcome anywhere in the world
bilboburgler is offline  
Jun 27th, 2007, 10:41 AM
  #5  
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To answer Ira's question, many people seem to rave about the Wine Country in the US as a fantastic vacation. And, with the price levels in the area, I think those in the tourist industy there seem to believe it as well. I'd like decent wines (but am by no means a super connoisseur), wineries with ambience, nice scenery, lack of pretension or snobbery, no busloads of hoardes of tourists etc. Perhaps my question boils down to whether or not our US vineyards are truly unique or trying to replicate their European ancestors.

And, I do intend to go with my friends no matter what.
julies is offline  
Jul 13th, 2007, 01:14 AM
  #6  
 
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I think we have an image of US wineries being pretentious or snotty but whenever we go to wine country (throughout different areas in CA not just Sonoma and Napa), it's far from it.

I gravitate towards family-own or lesser known wineries when I go wine tasting. We love the areas where there is an opportunity to meet the winemaker or owner. Sometimes they will be the one pouring. They say that Napa has been overly commercialize but it's up to you to seek out the unknowns. You don't need to follow the crowd, just go with what you like.

And it's unfair to really compare Europe with the US. It's completely different. And I don't think they lack originality. I don't even think the question is even relevant. In the end, it's an agricultural product. You go with what works. There's experiments here and there - some work, some don't. The US hasn't been making wine as long as many European wineries have. You will notice, mainly with new wineries or young wine regions, that the wines aren't always that great. But sometimes you can always tell that they have potential. And you can always look forward to that and cheer them on for trying.
ricerco is offline  

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