Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The top 5 things to consider when planning a wine tour

French Wine Explorers E-Newsletter
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1-Time of year: September is a beautiful time to go to see the harvest, but can be challenging get certain estate appointments. July is a good time to go and get estate visits before August, typically vacation time for some, and September, during harvest. If you are keen on going in September, join a small group tour where the planning has been well established in advance to assure quality visits.

2-Don't drink and drive: Even if you spit during your wine tastings, it is not advisable to drive while you are tasting. Leave that to a pro and take full advantage that a driver will get you where you need to be on time, and fill the day out with useful information about the region and its wines. Relax and enjoy.

3-Be Adventurous: Try an appellation or region you are less familiar with and broaden your knowledge and appreciation for the region. Not sure which appellation that may be? A quality wine tour provider can steer you in the right direction.

4-Less is more: In France, the visits are very thorough, so limit yourself to knowing that it's quality over quantiy when it comes to tours and tastings

5-Timing: Where you stay is as important as the estates you visit. If you haven't been to the hotel or chateau you are considering, don't assume what you see on the website is what you get. Check with your wine tour expert for real time information.

One last tip- Go with a professional wine tour planner-one that knows the region, how best to get there, its quirks, and the best estates to visit based on what wines you prefer to help make the best use of your time.