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Jill Leone’s Tips for Maximum Wine Tasting Fun

  1. NO PERFUME  |  The beautiful aromatics in wine clash wildly with those of perfumes and colognes. This is a strict no-no in wine country. Leave it behind in the hotel.

  2. BRING A SWEATER  |  Yes, the weather is perfectly temperate outside. But the cave or cellar you’ll be touring is significantly cooler. Take along a wrap or a sweater.

  3. YOU’LL BE WALKING  |  Wear those cute, but comfortable, shoes. Remember, you may be walking through a vineyard. Stilettos can be hazardous in the field.

  4. HYDRATE! HYDRATE! HYDRATE!  |  Bring a water bottle. You’ll be thankful you have it. And I'll be happy to refill it for you throughout the day.

  5. DRINK RESPONSIBLY  |  Just because I’m driving for you doesn’t mean you should get drunk. I don’t wish to spoil the fun, but I want you to know that wineries are required to refuse to serve you if you are visibly drunk.

  6. MIND THE SCHEDULE  |  It’s my job to keep you on time. I’ll let you know 15 minutes before we must leave the current tasting room for your next appointment so that you can finish up the tasting and make any purchases.

  7. NEVER MISS A TASTING  |  I’ll do everything possible to get you there on time. In Napa, if you are more than 15 minutes late, you may miss that winery as they must maintain their tasting schedules and will refuse to honor your appointment if late.

  8. MAKING WINE PURCHASES  |  Shipping regulations are constantly changing. Just because one winery can ship to you in your state doesn’t mean the next winery can ship the same way. Trust the staff at each winery to know if they can ship to you. Airlines have strict regulations. Ensure you have a way to get your wine purchases home in advance of your tour.

  9. SHIPPING WINE PURCHASES  |  Here are a few ways to get your wine purchases home safely from wine country:

  • ​Ask the winery for a shipping box for your purchases. Then you can take it home as checked luggage on your flight home.

  • Ask the concierge at your hotel for recommendations on shipping your wine home. It's bulky and heavy, making the trip home through airports and beyond uncomfortable. If possible, ship your purchases from a local shipping service in wine country directly to your home doorstep.

  • Please bear in mind: I cannot ship your wine purchases for you. My best recommendation is that you ship directly from the winery or via a local shipping service. Plan ahead.

  1. ENJOY A PICNIC  |  A great time-saver is enjoying a picnic lunch at the winery closest to lunch time.  (Weather & itinerary permitting) I carry menus from local delis and restaurants. I can take your order and get it filled while you leisurely enjoy your tasting experience. Then simply step outside to a table I've prepared to enjoy your meal (and a glass of wine). No waits. No hassle. (Lunch is not included in my tour fee.)

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