8 Tips to enhance your wine tour experience
We recommend that you dress comfortably, with comfortable shoes, as you may be walking in wine production facilities with wet floors or in vineyards with uneven rocky soil. A light jacket, sweater, or long-sleeved top may be helpful, as wine production areas and cellars are kept quite cool.
Please do not wear perfume or cologne while wine touring. Because smell is such an important factor in wine tasting, applied fragrances will interfere with the ability of you and your fellow wine tasters, to fully appreciate the wines.Mints or chewing gum are also not recommended. They have an undesirable impact on how wine tastes.
You will be given “tastes” of wine, usually an ounce or two of each wine. It may not sound like much, but over the tour, it adds up to several full glass pours. Remember, you do not have to drink all that is provided, in fact many tasters will share a single tasting, especially as the day progresses. Consider pouring any excess into the container (aka dump bucket) provided in the tasting area, for that very purpose. Don’t worry, it won’t hurt the winemaker’s feelings.
You may want to forego tasting a particular wine, if you know it’s not a type you favor – or just if your palate is tired. Do remember though, that wine is not a beverage manufactured by formula or recipe. One winemaker’s Chardonnay or Syrah can be completely different from another, and you may unexpectedly find a new favorite.
There will bottled water on your tour vehicle. We strongly recommend that you hydrate with as much as 8 oz. of water between tasting stops. This will refresh your palate and taste buds, and will make your tummy happy.
You might bring a note pad or your cell phone to record tasting notes and take pictures of the labels, as it helps to notate your impression of each wine as you taste it. After tasting 16-20 wines during your Bon Vivant tour, you may not remember exactly which Riesling or Cabernet was the one you really liked. Upon your return home, these tasting notes and pictures can be a useful reference when purchasing wine at a wine store, ordering wine on-line, or even picking a bottle from your own wine cellar.
Bottles of wine purchased on tour are a great way to recall your Bon Vivant Wine Tour experience and to share the happy memories with friends at home. Conveniently, many wineries will waive part or all of the tasting fee, when wine is purchased. Should you find a particular wine that you like, we recommend that you purchase it during your visit at the winery. While most states allow for purchase online, many of the boutique wineries have such low production, they cannot make their wines broadly available. There is a storage section in all of our vehicles for your wine purchases, and we can help you get shipping boxes, if needed. One more thing for those traveling on Alaska Airlines, they offer a “Wine Flies Free” program, check their website for details.
Save your wine purchases until you get home, or at least to your hotel. Drinking wine or other alcoholic beverages in the vehicle is not allowed.
Also, due to Washington State law, wineries cannot allow the consumption of alcoholic beverages, other than the wine they produce, anywhere on their premises.
Wineries are required by law to refuse to serve anyone who appears intoxicated, whether or not they are driving. Also, tasting room staff will often ask for ID, be sure to bring yours along.
Always have a designated driver when you are wine touring and tasting. With Bon Vivant Wine Tours, we do your driving, allowing you to relax and safely enjoy your wine touring and tasting