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EXPERIENCE WINE COUNTRY NEWS

Panzanella Salad Recipe

Panzanella Salad Recipe

Guests who participate in any Platypus Wine Tours throughout Wine Country California, including Napa Valley and Sonoma County, are always amazed at the level of hospitality and the knowledge displayed by the Platypus tour professionals. Besides providing a safe and...

Mushroom Cream Pasta Recipe

Mushroom Cream Pasta Recipe

Guests of Platypus Wine Tours of Napa, California, frequently request recipes of some of the food preparations created by the culinary staff for the fascinating Wine Country California Tours through Napa and Sonoma County. As the weather begins to cool during the Fall...

Harvest Season and Rounding Out Your Home Wine Cellar

Harvest Season and Rounding Out Your Home Wine Cellar

Once again, as harvest season in wine country California rolls around, work in the vineyards has accelerated. Vineyard managers have carefully charted their harvest schedules based on each grape variety’s rate of maturation and its vineyard location. Some white and...

Most Reliable wine pairings

Most Reliable wine pairings

Wine pairing is the art and sometimes science of selecting the right wine to enhance the enjoyment and flavor of the food being served. The aim is for the wine and food to be in balance, making sure that one does not overwhelm the other. In the extreme, for example, a...

What to know about winery tasting fees

What to know about winery tasting fees

Visitors to individual wineries in Napa and Sonoma wine country are generally asked to pay a wine tasting fee to sample the wines during their visits. According to a San Francisco Chronicle article from July 2022, the average wine tasting fee for a basic session in...

Rich Mushroom Soup

Rich Mushroom Soup

As a winery tour company, we are always seeking ways to delight and entertain guests and friends. That's why we love featuring delicious recipes and wine pairings that will help you bring a piece of wine country home. This delicious offering, now part of the Platypus...

Veraison in the vineyards

Veraison in the vineyards

Vineyard managers and their teams shift from one phase of vine development to the next during the growing season, always alert to unexpected changes and variations. While climactic conditions impact how a season’s crop will develop, grape vines undergo distinct stages...

Russian River AVA

Russian River AVA

Because of its unique combination of climate and location, the Russian River American Viticultural Area (AVA) in Sonoma County is one of California's most successful and popular growing wine grape-growing areas. The specific varietals produced from grapes grown in...

Sonoma County Wine Regions

Sonoma County Wine Regions

To the west of Napa Valley, between the stretch of the Mayacamas Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, lies the true birthplace of the California wine industry, Sonoma County. While Russian colonists planted the first vineyards in the region around 1830, vineyard...

The Platypus Kitchen and Lentil Salad Recipe

The Platypus Kitchen and Lentil Salad Recipe

Besides the excellent commentary and memorable visits to some of Napa and Sonoma County’s boutique wineries, Platypus Wine Tours is also popular for the delicious food they serve. Unlike other tour companies, the culinary staff prepares fresh meals for each outing in...

Summer Plans in the Napa Valley

Summer Plans in the Napa Valley

Throughout the year, Napa Valley businesses and communities offer a wide variety of fascinating family-friendly activities to enjoy, enlighten, and entertain. During the summer, when most of us schedule time to travel to our favorite destinations, the whirlwind of...

What Napa Valley AVA Districts sit higher than the valley floor?

What Napa Valley AVA Districts sit higher than the valley floor?

Several distinct growing areas lie within the comparatively small agricultural region of Napa Valley’s Wine Country California. Challenged by the diversity of microclimates, soils, moisture levels, elevations, and other conditions, vintners successfully produce a full...

Birthday Quinoa Salad

Birthday Quinoa Salad

The communities and businesses of Wine Country California celebrate their beautiful and delicious wines all year long with exciting festivals, cultural activities, and professional wine tours complete with fun and educational wine tastings. Delicious food is also...

Bama Macaroni Salad

Bama Macaroni Salad

During some of our award-winning Wine Country tours, guests who opt for the Platypus Wine Tours’ lunch option can enjoy a delicious, Southern-inspired side offering. This now-famous dish, Kathy’s Kitchen’s Bama Macaroni Salad, is a creation that evokes a cavalcade of...

What is the “Valley Floor” in the Napa Valley AVA District?

What is the “Valley Floor” in the Napa Valley AVA District?

How do Napa wineries produce so many different world-class wines? Besides the nearly perfect weather condition for grape development, another principal reason is the diversity of Napa Valley’s topography. Vineyards on the “floor” of the Napa Valley AVA (American...

Wine Tasting Tips Some Might Not Know About

Wine Tasting Tips Some Might Not Know About

Some people may feel intimidated before engaging in their first Napa wine tasting experience. The truth is that Napa wine tasting experiences are relaxed, enjoyable, and quite educational. And, likely other first-timers will be in your group, so you will be learning...

Recipe: Thai Cabbage Slaw

Recipe: Thai Cabbage Slaw

With the weather warming up and grilling season fast approaching, it's SLIDER time! We love sliders for how quick and easy they are to make, as well as for all the fun customizing opportunities. What wine will you pair? It depends on your meat and condiments. Pinot...

Discover the Napa Valley AVA

Discover the Napa Valley AVA

During the past century, Napa Valley has become one of the world’s most important wine-producing regions in the world. The excellent climate, multiple soil types, and varying elevations of Napa Valley contribute to a spectacular growing environment for nearly all...