California Vineyard
One of California's great wine regions.

Autumn adventures in El Dorado County

El Dorado’s small craft wineries let you get hands-on and underfoot during the harvest and fall months while exhibiting an enormous charitable spirit.

Noted for its small wine producers and their one-on-one hospitality, the region gives enthusiasts an opportunity to get into vineyards and cellars during this busy yet outstandingly beautiful time of year in the Sierra Foothills. Since El Dorado’s vineyards are high in elevation, harvest continues much longer than most other California wine regions, giving visitors a chance to get in on the action all the way to November in some cases.

Harvest Tours, Boeger Winery

Now through November, every Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., guests can get a behind-the-scenes experience while crush is in full swing. Expert guided tours give access to the sights, aromas, and tastes of the harvest. In a group no larger than 10 people, you’ll sip and stroll through the vineyard, sample grapes off the vine, taste juice directly from the fermenting tanks, and enjoy a private tasting in the winery’s historic 1872 wine cellar. Contact Boeger Winery, 530-622-8094.

Weekends in October, Wofford Acres Winery

For 15 years Wofford Acres has hosted Combatting Cancer in the Cellar. During October weekends from noon to 4 p.m., a $5 donation gets you into the cellar for barrel tasting with the winemaking staff. Donations benefit Casting for Recovery and gas cards for volunteers driving patients to cancer treatments at the Marshall Cancer Resource Center. To date the winery has donated $30,000 in just $5 increments! Taste the wines and see one of the most outstanding views in the region at Wofford Acres Winery, 530-626-6858.

Hallow Harvest, Sierra Vista Winery

A free celebration of Sierra Vista’s new event center. On Saturday, October 26, from noon to 4 p.m., the winery offers live music, hayrides, crafts, food to purchase, and spiced sparkling wine punch-all in a dramatic rural setting vibrant with fall’s beautiful colors. Contact Sierra Vista Winery, 530-622-7221.

A Night of Hope, Saluti Cellars

On Saturday, October 26, this impressive property hosts an evening of hors d’oeuvres, dinner, and a live auction to support the good work of the Center for Violence-Free Relationships. Saluti’s charitable spirit is alive and well in a full slate of events. For tickets contact: www.thecenternow.org or call 530-626-1450.

Weekend of Giving, El Dorado Winery Association

The Center for Violence-Free Relationships uses education and advocacy to build healthy relationships, free of sexual assault and domestic violence. In 2018 the center helped 9,712 clients and provided 3,734 safe house bed-nights. On the weekend of November 16-17, more than two dozen El Dorado Winery Association members, including, Jodar, Mellowood, Lava Cap, and Nello Olivo, will donate $1 to the center for every bottle sold. Contact El Dorado Winery Association for more information.

Get up here and enjoy the harvest, the bounty, and the beauty of El Dorado wine region. Taste the juice, visit with the vintners, and be charitable too!