No response so our party of 5 chose Harmony Wynelands for our picnic!
This choice presented a "picnic timing" issue because logistically the picnic winery was 10 miles from the other 2 wineries we had selected for tastings (nearer to downtown Lodi). Just vicious!
Servers make the day! Especially at Abundance & Jessie's Grove! The 2 very new, young servers had lots of moxie and were just a delight. It is the experience, it is not about the wine! Note: We have had countless blind tastings with our French Laundry "toity" friends and they are exposed every time to "miss" the Parker high rated wine. You are a connoisseur if you have taste buds!
We started at Abundance which is less than a mile from Jessie's Grove Winery and then traveled to Harmony Wynelands for our picnic. The tasting fee at all 3 is $5 and a fee is waived for each bottle purchased at Jessie's Grove and Harmony.
The wines at each winery were very good and the "new for me" varietal was Carignane (true Central Valley heritage). Due to the Lodi growing climate it "seems" to match up well with the Rhone Region in France (Grenache, Mourvedre = think Roses)? But also, and the most important, is an excellent selection of Zins. Then there is the Port. My wife always buys the Port. We could open a franchise of Ports R Us! At Abundance, 2008 “Bacio Dolce” Carignane Dessert Wine (it is very good and the bottle is marketing genius) was acquired for the R Us store (she buys but at home it is not consumed???)!
The picnic grounds at Harmony are quintessential. There is a fountain, with 4 tables (stone, seat 4-5 people) at each corner of a lawn area, under beautiful shade trees with a view of the vineyards across the road. Inside the "typical" wine tasting room experience with refurbished organ's (cannot make this stuff up) and Victrola's. Bob the owner played at day's end a rousing Casablanca "As Time Go's By" rendition on the organ?!! The previous evening's wedding party featured a Groom from France and his Bride from Japan (cannot make this stuff up)!
Just Go and Enjoy!Edited: 06 August 2012, 13:04
Strands - sorry I missed your previous post. You hit some of the hot spots and tried some good Lodi benchmarks. Next you swing through give us a call @ www.fieldsfamilywines.com - picnic area, pet friendly etc. Next time you come through we'll line you up with some of the newer kids on the block. Cheers.
We were very impressed with the Lodi wine country. They produce some awesome Old Vine Zin there. We tasted at Jeese's and Abundance and loved all of the wines at both places. We found a really nice restaurant at Wine and Roses Hotel where we enjoyed lunch. The Lodi Visitor's Center is adjacent to this hotel where you can pick up lots of great info on the area and enjoy some wine tasting, also. :)
Sorry to have missed your post! Things have been busy away from TA.
By all means come back and visit! We have so many up and coming wineries here in Lodi. Jessie's Grove is one of my favorites; looks like you missed Harney Lane which has an incredible Spanish Albarino. (They also don't charge for tasting!)
We have many great wineries with nice picnic type facilities. Don't hesitate to call the Downtown Lodi Visitor Center and pick our brains. We can give you great referrals based on the type of wine you like, area of town you will be in, stops you want to make, etc. Our hours are M-F 10:00-5 and Sat. from 10:00 - 4:30p.m.
Van Ruiten Family Winery has tables outside. ( I buy a bottle and bring my own cheese and crackers).. Macchia also has tables,music and food.
Thank you. We want to visit Macchia.
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