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Reader's Favorite Winery Outings in the West

Via readers share favorite winery destinations in California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, and Utah.

Wine enthusiasts in the Hess Collection Winery cellar during a wine tasting tour.

Leonard Zhukovsky / Shutterstock

California

Boeger Winery in Placerville has both excellent wines and stunning grounds,” says Mitchell Mark. “Taste, buy a bottle, and picnic under a tree near a creek or pond. It doesn’t get better.” 

Saratoga's Cooper-Garrod Estate Vineyards is a perfect place, and not only for tasting,” says Elena Baryshnikova. “Take a hike in the mountains and enjoy stunning views of Silicon Valley, or bring lunch, buy some wine, and sip it under shady eucalyptus trees.”

"Hess Collection in Napa combines world-class art with premium wines,” says Mike Fleice. “Donald Hess has built a collection that challenges you to stop and think—a welcome addition to the usual winery touring.”

“Be sure to stroll Landmark Vineyard's landscaped grounds in Kenwood and take in the beautiful views of nearby Sugarloaf Ridge,” says Lori Barron. “You can buy wine in the tasting room, then take it out back and play bocce ball.”

“We love Preston Farm & Winery, a family-owned organic winery in Healdsburg,” says Krista Glaser. “We take a picnic basket, buy some zinfandel, and play with the cats while sitting at one of the picnic tables.”

Nevada

“An oasis,” says Linda Scholl. “Just an hour from Vegas in Pahrump, Pahrump Valley Winery has guided tours, a tasting room, and a restaurant.”

Idaho

“Gregg and Mary Alger's Huston Vineyards makes a fine blend of cabernet, merlot, and syrah, poured along with other wines in the comfortable Caldwell tasting room,” says Rob Lundgren. “The couple is excellent at pairing food with wine and sometimes hold delicious Basque dinners inspired by strong southwest Idaho Basque traditions.”

Oregon

“We love this Ankeny Vineyard in Salem,” says Lara Kierlin, “not only for its pinot noir but for the gorgeous property with its small animal farm, picnic area, and pioneer family cemetery.”

“It’s a pleasant drive to LaVelle Vineyards in Elmira through farms and woods,” says Albin Brandstetter. “Enjoy a view of Fern Ridge Reservoir from the top of the vineyard, then stop at Bush’s Fern View Farms to buy fresh produce.”

“Amazing!” says Elizabeth Downs. “The view at Eugene's Sweet Cheeks Winery is beautiful, the wines rank among the best, and the staff makes you feel at home. We purchased bottles, sat outside around a fire, and laughed all afternoon.”

Utah

“The wines here remind you of eating fresh fruit,” says Karl Schatten. “Hive, in Layton, makes wines and meads from peaches, strawberries, raspberries, currants, and citrus fruits.”

This article was first published in January 2013 and updated in March 2019. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.