It’s vacation time in America. France gets the hell out of Dodge in August, but here in the States, July is the month most of us wander off into the hinterland of adventure and sunburn.
For the believers out there—can I get an amen, somebody?—wine has to be part of the vacation-planning process. Let the scoffers drink Coke.
There’s a particular math when it comes to wine and vacation. The formula for how much wine you need to take with you is directly related to the extravagance and location of the trip. If you’re taking a villa in Tuscany or touring Bordeaux, then why schlep a bottle?
On the other hand, there are vacations that require mass quantities of wine, for example, if camping is involved or Disneyland is on the itinerary. (You can’t shuffle off to Burgundy every summer.)
I’ve learned to choose carefully the wines I bring on vacation. It’s all about location. A few years ago, we found a spot right on the water in Kailua-Kona in Hawaii, and I brought along a few wines from the cellar. One was a 15-year-old Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon. We grilled steaks and the wine drank beautifully but, looking down on the beach as the sun faded, I just wasn’t in the mood for Cabernet. The fit wasn’t right.
On the other hand, if it’s February and the snow in Lake Tahoe is up to my clavicle, you won’t find many whites or rosés in my wine stash.
I’ve never been the type to organize my vacations exclusively around wine. I’ve toured France with the best of them, but I’ll take palm trees and blue water any time. So for me, wine is a significant part of a vacation but seldom the focus.
This year, we’re wandering along the California Central Coast, so I’ll take only a few bottles as backup. There are just too many good wineries to discover, too many wine-savvy restaurants in Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo and points south to do otherwise.
So what’s your wine plan for this year’s vacation? Do you take wine along or prefer buying as you go?
Mark Lyon — Sonoma, CA; USA — July 20, 2011 12:35pm ET
Philip A Chauche — Germantown, MD — July 20, 2011 12:54pm ET
John Wilen — Texas — July 20, 2011 1:55pm ET
Mark Horowitz — Brooklyn, USA — July 20, 2011 2:44pm ET
Mary Jane Phillips — Farmington Hills, MI — July 20, 2011 3:04pm ET
Stephen Symchych — Boston, MA — July 20, 2011 3:43pm ET
Brian Loring — Lompoc, CA — July 20, 2011 5:07pm ET
Tim Fish — Santa Rosa, CA — July 20, 2011 9:23pm ET
Mark Horowitz — Brooklyn, USA — July 21, 2011 8:53am ET
Whit Thompson — Rochester, NY — July 21, 2011 9:22am ET
Brian Loring — Lompoc, CA — July 22, 2011 12:29pm ET
Paul Perivolaris — London, Canada — July 22, 2011 1:27pm ET
Tablas Creek Vineyard — Paso Robles, CA — July 22, 2011 4:18pm ET
Guy Brouillette — Boulder, CO — July 25, 2011 2:45pm ET
John Reeves — USA — July 25, 2011 3:37pm ET
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