Although Carmel Valley Village is just a blip on the map – you’ll actually miss it if someone else is driving and you close your eyes for a few seconds – it is home to over 15 wine tasting rooms and growing. The reason? The entire valley is loaded with wineries! They are hidden in small valleys and up curvy roads, which is why all the tasting rooms are in the Village. No one should be driving those roads after having drinks!
Our Favorite wine tasting room is Georis, located directly behind Corkscrew Cafe. Boasting an outdoor patio that will transport you to somewhere in Europe for the afternoon. No one is in a hurry, except to get you wine and appetizers so you can sit and relax. You may find dogs on leash, sitting by the tables lounging, or people watching. If you do bring your dog, make sure they are well behaved though; misbehaved dogs do not make for great neighborly conversation. Conversation is important, because at Georis, in fact anywhere in Carmel Valley Village that you decide to eat or drink, you will find yourself quickly and easily talking to anyone near you. The sun, beautiful climate, great food and wine lead to casual and easy conversation.
You may also see a very large open air vintage “wagon” being pulled by a tractor driven by an older man sporting a cowboy hat. He’s almost as much a part of the village as the wine we drink. He transports anyone that chooses to ride from tasting room to tasting room and his wagon is always full. Everyone on board looks happy, and the driver, Cowboy Pete, is in charge of the Happy Trails wagon tours. Call them to make reservations, you won’t regret it!
Yes, Carmel Valley is much newer to wines than Napa Valley or Sonoma. You will find wines here that may have a little more European than California influence, something that sets the wine in this valley apart from other wine areas in California. Check out our “Area Wine Tasting” page for information on all of the tasting rooms in the village, then find a place to park, walk and enjoy the wine of Carmel Valley!