Dog-friendly Wineries

Dog-friendly Wineries

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Swirl, Sip and Savor at Santa Cruz’s Dog-Friendly Wineries

Bonny Doon Vineyard <br/> Photo Credit: @bonnydoonvineyard
Bonny Doon Vineyard
Photo Credit: @bonnydoonvineyard

First-time visitors to Santa Cruz County usually have beaches in mind. But once they discover wines of the Santa Cruz Mountains appellation, one of the oldest in the state and known primarily for pinot noir and chardonnay, they’ll be herding their four-legged buddies into some of the dozens upon dozens of winery tasting rooms sprinkled throughout the county. DogTrekker.com has rounded many of them up in a wine-trail itinerary heading north to south on Highway 1. more »

Lots to See and Do in Downtown Napa

Jack & Humphrey enjoy a sunny day at St. Clair Brown Winery
Jack & Humphrey enjoy a sunny day at St. Clair Brown Winery

Potential visitors to Napa Valley tend to think first of vine-covered hills dotted with wineries, wineries and more wineries. They’re all here, of course. But it would be a shame to bypass the city of Napa itself. A renaissance over the past two decades has transformed what once was the utilitarian center of wine country into a visitor destination packed with pizzazz. Downtown Napa is walkable, dog-friendly and filled with surprises for two- and four-legged visitors alike. more »

Hop On Over to Hopland

Suki and Fritzy at Jaxon Keys Winery & Distillery. <br/> Photo Credit: @suki_theshiba
Suki and Fritzy at Jaxon Keys Winery & Distillery.
Photo Credit: @suki_theshiba

Winery rich Mendocino County is home to 10 American Viticultural Areas (AVAs), a half-dozen of which are smaller regions lumped together under the over-arching Mendocino County label. While there are many dog-friendly tasting rooms scattered about, it makes sense for newbies to follow one of two designated “wine roads,” one tracing Highway 128 through the famed Anderson Valley, the other centered around the Hopland area on Highway 101. more »

A Cluster of Winery Finds In Gold Country

Boogie at Fenton Herriott Vineyards. Photo Credit: @hi_ericabrown
Boogie at Fenton Herriott Vineyards. Photo Credit: @hi_ericabrown

Wine grapes were introduced to the Sierra Nevada foothills during the Gold Rush years, when miners were thirsty for refreshment and farmers eager to provide. Today, the Sierra Foothills AVA (American Viticultural Area) stretches from Yuba County in the north to Mariposa County in the south, with five smaller AVAs under the umbrella designation. Two of them, El Dorado and Fair Play, are in El Dorado County, within easy striking distance of Sacramento, gateway to the Gold Country wine country. more »

Big Reds and Good Times in Amador County

Baiocchi Wines - Photo Credit: @krispix3
Baiocchi Wines - Photo Credit: @krispix3

Amador County, best known for its robust zinfandels and barberas, celebrates big reds with its annual Barbera Festival, an outdoor sip-and-stroll event set this year for Sept. 16 at Terra d’Oro/Montevina Winery in the foothill town of Plymouth. More than 80 wineries from all over the state will be pouring, while top restaurants will offer samples of their fare. Artists, musicians and vendors will of course be on hand, too. If you can guarantee your dog will be a good dog in a crowded situation, bring her along (but be sure to keep her leashed, provide water and—you know the drill—pick up after her immediately should the need arise). more »

Tri-Valley’s No-Whine Wineries

Strollin
Strollin' through Retzlaff Vineyards. Photo Credit: @thatwinetastingchick

A laid-back atmosphere and dog-friendly vibe prevail at many Tri-Valley wineries where you can both make yourselves at home. Most establishments are located in the picturesque Livermore Valley, one of the country’s oldest winemaking regions. Wine-grape cultivation started here in the 1840s, and today, more than 50 wineries, 23 of them proudly dog-friendly, share an AVA whose terroir is characterized by warm days, cool nights and gravel-based soils. You can check out DogTrekker’s dog-friendly Tri-Valley wine trail before heading out. more »

Tri-Valley: Eat, Drink & Chill After the Hike

Big White House Winery <br/> Photo Credit: @jessmoseley
Big White House Winery
Photo Credit: @jessmoseley

If you plan to put on your hiking shoes and head out to enjoy the East Bay Regional Parks mentioned in this issue, we have just the place to refresh, relax and renew after the hike – the Tri-Valley region of California! Just a little over 30 miles from San Francisco on the sunny side of the bay, this area encompasses three valleys and four cities where dog-friendly hotels, restaurants, wineries and craft breweries and tap rooms abound. more »

Weatherproof Wine Tasting With Your Dog

Xena and Willow at Clos Pegase Winery. Photo Credit: @xenaandwillow
Xena and Willow at Clos Pegase Winery. Photo Credit: @xenaandwillow

Wineries in the Napa Valley number in the hundreds, and it’s a rare facility open to the public that turns away imbibers with leashes in hand. While some facilities relegate four-legged guests to their picnic grounds, others invite furry friends to belly up to the bar with their people (yes, Lucy, that’s a jar of treats on the counter…). Here are some weatherproof suggestions for winter wine tasting with a dog at your side. more »

Fall Trekking in the SLO Lane

Benni in Morro Bay. Photo Credit: Bennilover (CC)
Benni in Morro Bay. Photo Credit: Bennilover (CC)

San Luis Obispo County encompasses just about everything California is known for, from mountains to ocean to wine country to laid-back vibe. Sure, you can shoot down from the Bay Area on Interstate 5 and Highway 46, but it’s much more rewarding to take the slow lane (Highway 101) all the way to Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo and beyond. more »

The Healing Powers of Healdsburg

Ziggy in Healdsburg. Photo Credit: @rocky_romero
Ziggy in Healdsburg. Photo Credit: @rocky_romero

What’s your pleasure? Cozy inns and memorable meals? Pre-holiday shopping? Wine tasting? You’ll find them all in Healdsburg, a charming and walkable town built around a plaza at the heart of the Russian River Valley. Scores of wineries are within easy striking distance of Healdsburg, but there are so many dog-friendly restaurants and tasting rooms in town (we’re partial to canine-welcoming Topel and Portalupi right on the square) that you might not even get into your vehicle until it’s time to go home. more »

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