Do you like wine? Are you looking for something fun to do this summer? Perhaps you need to throw a birthday party for your wine-loving wife or a bachelorette party for your best gal pal? I suggest you look no further than Tastings and Tours, a wine tour company that takes all the guess work out of a personalized Wine Tour.
Over the Rapture weekend some girlfriends and I found ourselves having a lovely time with Tastings and Tours as we drank our way through beautiful Central Bucks County. You see, my friend Alison had worked with Tastings and Tours about a month prior to create a tour of three wineries and a lunch for a group of girlfriends. The reason Alison also chose Tastings and Tours is because it is a fabulous way to tour wineries without stress- the friendly people at Tastings and Tours are able to provide you with highly customizable, affordable, all inclusive tastings and discounts not normally offered to the general public.
I can honestly say there is no other place I would have wanted to be during the Rapture than on a Tasting and Tours bus. Oh, Did I forget to mention that? Tastings and Tours provides transportation- they will pick you up at your house, even, and take you from winery to winery, giving you tips and tricks along the way. We were lucky enough to have Rich as our driver, who was kind enough to pick up eight highly excitable twenty-somethings, and not want to drop us off before the tour was over.
Our group’s first stop led us to Sand Castle Winery– just a scenic ride along the Delaware River led us to this unique winery. The “Castle” provided a private tasting and some unique pairings, and our tasting guide, Joseph, provided plenty of entertainment as well. Sand Castle Winery was a truly beautiful setting, and the wines were certainly plentiful- however my favorite part of this winery was the crash course in wine you received while there. Joseph made sure our group learned how to see, feel and taste wine. Just as Joseph predicted, my favorite wine from Sand Castle was easily the Alpine Spice!
After some glamor shots in front of Sand Castle Winery we all piled back inside the bus and headed to lunch- a great BYOB which I had had the pleasure of eating at many times before- Villaggio Italian Restaurant, in Lahaska, Pennsylvania. The Italian food here never disappoints, but if you want suggestions, standouts include the Eggplant and Chicken Parmesans. For the wine tour, the menu is a bit stunted, but both of the aforementioned dishes are on there. I have two suggestions in reference to Villagio- first- it might be a good idea to take a break from the wine tasting (even though this is a BYO), and second- go to Villaggio for dinner the next time you are in the area, there is so much good food on the menu, don’t limit yourself to one experience.
You could have rolled us out the door of Villaggio, but we made it on our own. Our next stop was to Buckingham Valley Vineyards. Our tour guide at this winery gave us the briefest of tours and had to be coaxed by Rich to give us a full explanation of Buckingham Valley Vineyard’s methods of wine making, but otherwise it was a good time. A tour of the beautiful property was included, as well as a sample of Buckingham’s own sparking wine followed by a self pour tasting. Of everything available there, Buckingham Valley Vineyard’s Sparkling Riesling was my top choice- their sparkler was exceedingly sweet and easy to drink.
Last but certainly not least, we hopped on the bus and headed for Rushland Ridge Vineyard & Winery. Here we were given a brief tour of the grounds, and we learned about the effects of weather and climate on grapes. The owner of the winery was our guide, and he was more than happy to answer our questions. Rushland Ridge is a small, family owned and operated vineyard, with some really great wines. Standouts to me were the DeChaunac- a bold red table wine, and the Niagra, a sweet white which would be perfect on a warm summer evening. Rushland Ridge certainly felt the most homey of all the wineries, and we were sad to have to leave.
Once being dropped off we all started talking about when we could go for another tour, what wineries we would do next time, and, upon learning that Tastings and Tours also does Breweries ((GASP))- we even threw around the idea of participating in a Brewery Tour.
Tastings and Tours is a young, innovative company with a great reputation. So, what are you waiting for– contact Tastings and Tours today to plan a carefree day while touring some of the finest wineries, breweries and brew pubs Bucks & Hunterdon Counties have to offer. Check out their website: http://www.tastingsandtours.com
If you like what you read you can check out E at her regularly scheduled blog, Lost Discoverer, daily: http://www.lostdiscoverer.blogspot.com/.