Amador Behind Cellar Door event

Signature passport event of Amador Vintners Association

Plymouth, Calif.- The Amador Vintners Association announces its signature passport event, Behind the Cellar Door, will return March 26 – 27, 2022. Order Your Tickets Online.

For over 25 years, Behind the Cellar Door has brought together leading Amador wineries and wine lovers of all stripes for an experiential weekend of wine-focused activities at over 40 participating wineries.

“In Amador we really have the option to get wine lovers behind the scenes in a way that just isn’t possible elsewhere.”

Margaret Schroeder

Leading Innovator

With a winegrowing history that dates to the gold rush, Amador remains a leading innovator among California wine regions with the first documented Zinfandel plantings dating back to 1869, pioneering the introduction of Barbera and other Italian & Rhone varietals, and utilizing adventurous farming and winemaking practices to appeal to modern consumers.

Amador Wine Country has been repeatedly recognized by leading national critics and struck gold once again in this year’s prestigious 2022 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition with 7 Best of Class winners, 8 Double Gold, 26 Gold, and 60 Silver Medals. Behind the Cellar Door offers a unique opportunity for visitors to experience the trailblazing, award-winning winemakers behind the region.

Best of Class Winners

Bella Grace Vineyards – 2021 Sauvignon Blanc
Jeff Runquist – 2020 Primitivo
Amador Cellars – 2019 Barbera
Cooper Vineyards – Cooper Ranch Red
Belledor Vineyards – 2019 Zinfandel
Vino Noceto – 2018 Sangiovese
Sobon Estate – 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon

A Top Wine Region

Focused on the “Art of Winemaking,” Behind the Cellar Door offers novices and connoisseurs the opportunity to connect with winemakers in a deeply hands-on fashion in one of the top wine regions in Northern California. Unlike traditional events which keep guests on their side of the proverbial tasting bar, Behind the Cellar Door invites participants to walk through century-old vineyards and state-of-the-art wineries with winemakers. From physically handling the mineral-rich, granitic soils of the region to conducting experiments with blending and aging vessels, Behind the Cellar door offers a wealth of immersive activities during the two-day experience.

Amador Wine

“In Amador we really have the option to get wine lovers behind the scenes in a way that just isn’t possible elsewhere,” explains Amador Vintners Association Executive Director Margaret Schroeder. “No other event will offer so much potential for personal connections between winemakers and wineries and participants since many of our wineries are smaller boutique wineries or are family run wineries who are passionate about sharing their family’s wine heritage.”

Amador Cellars, a recent Best of Class Winner, has been a staple of the Shenandoah Valley for nearly twenty years. The family-owned and operated vineyard embodies the exploratory spirit of the region especially with regard to the unique varieties in cultivation, which the family will showcase during Behind the Cellar Door. Together with guests, winemakers and siblings Michael and Ashley Long will introduce visitors to two unique Italian grape varieties, Teroldego and Nero D’Avola rarely grown in Northern California. Indigenous to the mountainous Trentino and Sicily regions of Italy, these two regions are a similar terroir footprint in the volcanic and highly mineral soils of Amador County. Though rarely cultivated in the foothills region, these wines offer a distinctive lens on Amador terroir, showing how grape variety and soil type can interact to create outstanding wines.

Unique two-day, reservation-only format

Behind the Cellar Door’s unique two-day, reservation-only format allows participants to blaze their own trail through the six sub-zones of Amador Wine country – Fiddletown, Shenandoah, Amador City, Drytown, West End and Sutter Creek – based on their unique interests. To do so, the Vintners’ Association has partnered with CellarPass, which allows participants to easily map their journeys across the region. Guests may select up to four winery experiences per day for a seamless guest experience. A limited number of single-day and designated driver passes are also available.

Most wineries will offer outdoor experiences to highlight both the local terroir nuances and simultaneously support Covid-19 social distancing best practices to ensure the safety of all guests involved. Tickets are available for purchase online at for the rain or shine event and start at $65 for one-day passports and $95 for two-day passports. Behind the Cellar Door is sponsored by Amador Vintners Association, Harrah’s Northern California, Sacramento Media, and CAP Radio.

About the Amador Vintners Association

The Amador Vintners Association is a membership-based organization representing over 45 extraordinary vintners who craft wines within the Amador County AVA. The mission of the Amador Vintners Association is to showcase the region’s award-winning wines and promote the region’s rich winemaking heritage. One of California’s original wine regions and home to the country’s oldest recorded Zinfandel vineyard, Amador Vintners Association is dedicated to educating consumers and media on the unique, world-class terroir of this pioneering region and regularly hosts events and tastings to highlight Amador County’s stunning terroirs. Learn more at

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