Carmel Valley Wineries
California State Highway 1 runs for over 650 miles along some of the most scenic coastline on the world, but taking a little 11 mile detour into the Carmel Valley is a trip that you will most definitely want to take. The stretch of road is especially rewarding for those that love to sample wines, as this part of California is home to some truly fantastic wineries and delicious varietals. The wineries in Carmel Valley are just one of the seven appellations that are found in Monterey County, which just happens to be one of the most diverse wine producing regions in the country.
Carmel Valley is tucked in among the Santa Lucia Range, which means that it is sheltered from the fogs and other weather conditions that regularly hit this area along the Pacific Coast. It is that unique climate that makes it such a perfect place to grow grapes. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and other red varietals are what the region is best known for, but there are many more types of wines to sample when you take the trip from Highway 1 down into the Carmel Valley. The wineries that you will pass on the way to Carmel Valley Village are truly breathtaking.
About halfway from the coast to the village is where you will run into what looks like a chateau plucked directly from the French countryside. It is in fact the home of the Chateau Julien Winery, which was established back in 1982. It’s a great place to stop off and look around, and is considered by many to be one of the must see Carmel wineries. Don’t just do all your sampling in one place, though, as there are plenty more to see as you make your way into the beautiful Carmel Valley Village.
Once you hit the village, you will be spoiled for choice when it comes to places to sample the wines of the region. The West Carmel Valley Road is the main road that runs through the area, and it where no less than 20 different tasting rooms can be found. The close proximity of all the different tasting rooms makes it easy to visit many of them in a single day. That is an awful lot of drinking, though, especially if you plan on driving afterwards. The good news is that there are plenty of places to stay in the area. Making plans to stay a couple of days is a great idea, as it will allow you to visit all the Carmel Valley Wineries and tasting rooms at a much more relaxed pace.
The village is also home to great shopping and dining, which means that everyone in your group will find something fun to do, even if they aren’t a great lover of wine. If you are planning on driving Highway 1 for any reason, and are looking for a place to take a break for a few hours, Carmel Valley is a great place to unwind and relax. At just 20 minutes from the main highway, it will keep you close to where you need to be whilst still making you feel as though you are well off the beaten path.