California is renowned for its wonderful range of high quality wines so it is not surprising that there are a great many wineries and wine tours available to visitors in the Lakeport area. Wine lovers can enjoy tastings of many top notch and award winning wines from around the region at a variety of different vineyards and wineries.
These include the Tuscan-style winery of Brassfield Estate which is situated on High Valley Road at Clearlake Oaks and provides an idyllic natural setting surrounded by centuries-old oak trees and an abundance of wildlife. Guests can enjoy tastings in a covered picnic pavilion with spectacular views of the surrounding countryside vineyards where you can sample white varieties such as Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc from its vineyards on the cooler valley floor where there are ideal conditions for the production of the grapes used for white wines. Lovers of red wine varieties will not be disappointed either as the winery also has several hillside vineyards that are perfect for the production of Merlot, Cabernet, Syrah and Zinfandel too. This winery has also undertaken a major excavation project that will result in one of the largest wine caves in the whole of North America. This system will operate over an area of 75,000 square feet that will hold around 1,500 barrels of wine and will intersect with the existing entrances and tour routes but there are also plans to include a large area where special events and parties can be held for the estate’s wine club as well as members of the public who will be able to book the venue independently too. At present winery tours here are by appointment only and the tasting room is open every day from 10am to 5pm.
On the shores of Clear Lake, the Ceago Vinegarden runs across several miles of land and is owned and run by Jim Fetzer who is a member of one if the region’s most prominent winemaking families however, he also offers a more unusual approach to wine making as he operates the business in an extremely eco-friendly manner. This green policy provides a holistic farming environment for the wildlife (both plants and animal species) in the area as a platform for biodynamic winemaking and agriculture in the industry. Over 8,000 cases of xxx are handcrafted on the premises too for these wines, which are created by the integration of agricultural, biological and ecological scientific knowledge into existing methods of crop rotations, compost production and plant diversity as well as the use of homeopathic sprays and soil and animal practices.
The main compound is a Hacienda style building, surrounded by herb gardens and a variety of plants and fruits growing freely including olives, walnuts, figs, lavender and of course grapes, while wild and domestic animals such as chickens, geese, ducks and wild turkeys roam freely around the development. The bulk of the grape crops grown here are being used to produce popular varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, and Sauvignon Blanc.