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Fall is harvest time for wines all across California. A special time of year with good reason to celebrate. And, it’s a great way to commemorate an anniversary, a birthday or even just plan a romantic getaway by doing some wine tasting in the High Sierra.


Mariposa County Courthouse Wine Tasting High Sierra
Image appears courtesy: Yosemite Mariposa County Tourism Bureau

The worst part of wine tasting is typically you need to drive from winery to winery. Well, Main Street in Mariposa makes that problem disappear. It offers you the opportunity to taste locally produced wine AND olive oil, visit art galleries and grab a bite to eat at one of the many fine dining establishments featuring fresh and local fare. If that wasn’t enough, you can also explore the grounds of the OLDEST operating courthouse west of the Rockies – the Mariposa County Courthouse. Not enough? Then be sure to visit on the last weekend in September for the CoyoteFest. This old-time affair offers you a chance to see the nationally acclaimed Coyote Howl.


Image appears courtesy: Visit Truckee

The Historic town of Truckee California is a special place. A mountain town that is one-of-a kind. Nestled a short jaunt over the hill from the shores of Lake Tahoe, this former logging town has come into its own when you talk about mountain fun. Truckee is the perfect base camp from golfing to skiing and everything in between including amazing wine tasting opportunities.

Branded as the highest & coldest winery, the Truckee River Winery established in 1989 uses the elevation and weather to create an assortment of flavorful wines. Pinot Gris is their specialty. For those yearning to explore a wide variety of wines, head to the Pour House located in downtown Truckee. Every third Thursday, they host a tasting from 5-7 pm with a sampling of wine and a variety of items like cheese, crackers, chocolate & nuts. Wine enthusiasts will also like Uncorked Truckee. A cozy spot offering a wide selection of wines, amazing cheeses and charcuterie.


Image appears courtesy: Visit Tuolumne

Are you a film fanatic? Then Jamestown should be on your MUST DO list as part of your wine tasting getaway. Just a three-minute drive from downtown Jamestown is the Railtown 1897 State Historic Park. Known as the “movie railroad”, it’s been featured in over 300 films such as “High Noon” & “Back to the Future Part 3.” After a fun day of reliving your favorite film scenes, head over to the two boutique tasting rooms of Gianelli Vineyards and Inner Sanctum Cellars to explore the varietals from this part of California. Not enough “Hollywood” fun? You can combine both your fantasies from “Unforgiven” and wine tasting. The Depot at Hurst Ranch which was in the film now includes a wine tasting room AND gift shop.  

While many other places exist to explore your palette of the grape kind, there’s something special about experiencing it in the High Sierra. Maybe it’s the cool mountain air or the relaxed state of mind. But no matter what, wine tasting in the High Sierra is unlike anywhere else.

Author: Alex Silgalis

Alex Silgalis is an outdoors travel writer who enjoys snowboarding, mountain biking, or having a cold one from a local mountain brewery. See more of Alex’s work at

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