Start your winery day trip in Lodi, California where The Grape Commission’s Visitor Center at the heart of downtown Lodi has maps, directions, schedules, and all the information necessary to get your winery day tour off to a good start. Join a tour of a large commercial winery or hire a limousine and driver to enjoy the smaller, more specialized, wineries that dot the countryside. Most offer complimentary wine tasting although some do make a nominal tasting fee.
Sandra Oberle at the Visitors’ Center offers telephone help at 1-800-798-1810. This is in addition to information supplied when you click on the individual headings below.
Lodi’s regional wineries
California’s Central Valley produces huge tracts of wine grapes to be processed into hundreds of thousands of cases of unbranded wines that are nurtured and blended into interesting and flavorful varietals. Vineyards in the Lodi area alone produce over 40% of the California Zinfandel, often from 100 year old vines.
Lodi has become a well-developed wine touring and tasting destination. Many area wineries are within 15 minutes of downtown Lodi and more than 30 tasting rooms are available for visitors to experience the lore and enjoy the wines.
These examples will give you some idea of what to expect when you visit the wineries. Their emphasis is always on gracious service offered in beautifully relaxing circumstances.
Harmony Wynelands in Lodi
Follow the front lane through rows of grapevines to a flower-covered administration building that houses their prized 1920’s theatre pipe organ. Bob Hartzell, past president of the Grape Growers Association and proud owner of Harmony, will entertain visitors with impromptu recitals at the drop of a hat.
Memorable weddings and perfectly coordinated business meetings are regular proud accomplishments but Harmony Wynelands are best known for their award-winning wines.
Michael David Winery
The comfortably country atmosphere includes fresh produce from the garden, a small café with excellent food, and relaxing nooks to enjoy the wares from an extensive wine tasting room. Moderately priced wines range from crisp whites to dark and fruity Sirah.
Jeremy Wine Company
This boutique winery has reopened its wine tasting room in downtown Lodi. The renovated tasting room is stylishly relaxing with gleaming copper and stained glass. A tasting of Jeremy Wine’s varietals, many with a Spanish influence, is an interesting before or after dinner choice.
There is probably no better close to a day of wine touring and tasting than a simple dinner and rest at a nearby hotel.
This is a link to a listing of many of the convenient hotels and B&Bs in Lodi.