Springtime in Wine Country: Vineyards are Coming Back to Life
Most winery owners will tell you there’s no bad time of year to visit Napa and Sonoma. Each season has its own unique nuances.
The essences of spring, however, are especially inviting, according to Dave Homewood, owner, and winemaker at Homewood Winery in Sonoma.
“Spring is an excellent time of year to see how the whole process works,” says Dave. “The vineyards are just coming back to life. It’s when we find out what kind of crops we have. That’s why it’s such an interesting time of year.”
Green Dream Tours visits Homewood Winery on its Combo Tour of Alcatraz & Sonoma Valley, and the Half-Day Sonoma Wine Tour. Guests learn about the art of winemaking and the region’s commitment to sustainability.
In early spring, bud break gets the party started, showing signs of life with tiny buds on the vines. A month to six weeks later, vineyards begin to bloom with delicate grape flowers. Some vineyards use fans to keep temperatures above freezing.
Bloom is followed by fruit set. This is when winemakers begin to predict their loads based on the number of berries in the grape clusters.
“It’s the greenest, prettiest time of year,” says Brian Allard, direct to consumer manager at Bouchaine Vineyards in Napa. “It’s very picturesque and it’s not too hot. From an experiential point of view, it’s the freshest part of the year.”
Green Dream Tours visits Bouchaine Vineyards on its Combo Tour of Napa and Sonoma, and theNapa Valley Wine Tour. Bouchaine boasts the distinction of being the longest continuously operated winery in the famous Carneros wine-growing region.
Green Dream Tours veteran guide Dylan Haas is also partial to wine tours in the spring.
“The springtime is the most wonderful time to go wine tasting in Northern California,” says Dylan. “The first greenery begins to grow on the vines and the hills change color, and the rains cease, and wine just tastes better.”
To enhance guest experiences, Green Dream Tours features big windows on its 14-passenger luxury buses for spectacular sightseeing.
“So come party with your friends this spring,” says Dylan. “Blow off some steam by sipping everything from Chardonnay to Cabernet Sauvignon on San Francisco’s best Wine Country tour.”