Monday, July 18, 2011

Take a Little Trip: East Bay Wineries with Organically Grown Wines

How many wineries does it take to become "wine country?" The East Bay's become a burgeoning winemaking scene. The Alameda home winemaking scene is pretty cool and in recent years, a few small professional negociant wineries have cropped up. (Negociant means they buy their grapes from vineyards; this was/is the traditional model in Burgundy for many years).

There are three wineries right here in the East Bay that now offer one or more organically grown wines - and of course, a "natural' wine bar you'll want to check out, too.


1. Two Mile Wines in Berkeley (new!)
Two Mile specializes in organically grown Rhone varietals. They're opening a new tasting room in Berkeley.

Oakland (near Jack London):

Both the Oakland wineries are located near Jack London Square. Most of their wines are not organically grown, but they do have a few:

1. Dashe Cellars
Dashe has two organically grown wines: a Riesling and a Zin, both grown in Mendocino's McFadden Vineyard.

2. Urban Legend
Urban Legend's Lake County grown Sauvignon Blanc (called Carmen Miranda's Hat) is organically grown.

3. Wine Bar: Punchdown (downtown Oakland)

And while you're out and about, you might want to add a visit to Punchdown wine bar in downtown Oakland, which serves a number of organically grown wines from around the world. They are also the place to stock up on Natural Process Alliance's wine which is taking locavore wine to new levels.

(Note: Punchdown serves some wines that are made from certified organic grapes and many that are not; so ask for their help in making your selection. Most wine bars serve wine from "practicing organic" as well as certified organic sources. Personally I prefer for now to stick to the certified ones.)

East Bay Wine Country

So when visitors come to call, you'll be able to bring them to organic "wine country" right in the urban environs, should you wish. You could even bike or take public transportation. In fact, if you live in city, you could even visit the Oakland wineries by taking the ferry - how fun is that!

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