El Dorado Wine Country

The hostess pours wines for us at Crystal Basin Cellars in El Dorado Wine Country. Photos © Veronica Hill.

The hostess pours wines for us at Crystal Basin Cellars in El Dorado Wine Country. Photos © Veronica Hill.

Tucked at the base of the Sierra Nevada mountains, along the historic American River, El Dorado Wine Country dates back to mining days, when James Marshall first planted a vineyard on a hill behind his cabin. Today, the cities of Placerville, Mount Aukum, Fair Play and Camino are home to more than 30 vineyards and wineries. Though all types of wines are produced here, standouts include Barbera, Syrah and Cabernet Franc varietals.

Though all of the wineries have their charm, we were taken by Lava Cap Winery (perfect for a vineyard picnic), Crystal Basin Cellars and David Girard Vineyards (located just a few miles from Coloma). In January, the region hosts its Bring out the Barrel weekend, and Passport weekends are offered March and April.

Tip: Sacramento Wine Tours offers limo and coach tours of El Dorado wine country. Don’t miss a stop at historic Coloma, which is home to the Marshall Gold Discovery State Park.

View Winery Map

FAST FACTS

Address: 2221 Fruitridge Rd, Placerville, CA
Tickets: Tastings average $5-$10
Hours: 11-5 Friday-Sunday; some open weekdays.
Phone: (800) 306-3956
Web

El Dorado Wine Country Map

Address: 2221 Fruitridge Rd, Placerville, CA

El Dorado Wine Country Video

Lava Cap Winery. Photo by Veronica Hill.

Lava Cap Winery. Photo by Veronica Hill.

A glass of El Dorado county wine. Photo by Veronica Hill.

A glass of El Dorado county wine. Photo by Veronica Hill.

Bring along a picnic and enjoy the view! Photo by Veronica Hill.

Bring along a picnic and enjoy the view! Photo by Veronica Hill.

 

 

 

 

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Veronica Hill
Hi! I'm Veronica Hill, host of YouTube's "California Travel Tips" show, and author of the California Essential Guide app on iTunes and Google Play. After working 20 years as a journalist (Fodors, US Weekly, Rolling Stone, Associated Press), I quit everything in 2007 to launch my YouTube channel and blog. When I'm not traveling, I can be found practicing yoga, hiking and stand-up paddleboarding. :)
Veronica Hill

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