Halter Ranch: Yvonne Goll Photography. Maipo Valley: Sernatur. 1881 Napa: Scott Chebegia. Top: Courtesy Healey’s Cornish Cyder Farm
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Apples are a star in the fall, particularly in European regions where the heirloom fruit is ready for harvest in the main cider locales of Normandy, France; Asturias, Spain; and United Kingdom’s West Country. At Healey’s in the Cornish village of Penhallow, you’ll ride a tractor around the orchards.
Step into the time machine at Epoch Estate Wines in Templeton on California’s Central Coast. In 1882, it became San Luis Obispo County’s first bonded winery: York Mountain Winery. In the 1900s, it was home to Polish Pianist, Diplomat, and Vintner Ignacy Jan Paderewski. Those legends and lore are dusted off during the winery’s History Tour & Tasting.
Fancy Footwork Although the Grape Stomp sounds like a Jazz-era dance step, it’s actually an annual ritual at the famed Napa winery, Grgich Hills. During harvest (August through October), book a Grape Stomp, then roll up your pants, throw off your shoes, and stomp fruit. You’ll arrive clean but will leave grape–stained.
Paradise Found At the opposite end of the spectrum are those tasting rooms designed to while away the morning, afternoon, and evening. Time is irrelevant when it’s always wine o’clock. At the newish 1881 Napa, the flamboyant French Vintner Jean-Charles Boisset renovated a Victorian home into a museum with a first-floor tasting room. The Benzinger Family Winery hillside in Sonoma County is both bucolic and biodynamic. The insectory and sheep are only a small part of the fun. There’s also the wine cave, an alluring spot to explore during a tour.
Très Chic Bordeaux wines are at their best when aged, which requires years of cellaring. The Vintage Tour at France’s Château Kirwan removes the wait and pours samples from its library. Other fun workshops allow guests to learn about wine while making a custom perfume blend.
Niner Wine Estates in Paso Robles is known for its Bordeaux varietals and a heart-shaped stand of oak trees on a LEED-certified property. It’s a little slice of heaven. A playground for wine lovers describes Napa’s Brasswood Bar + Kitchen. Caves, a sensory room, and an art gallery pique your imagination. 9