On Wine: El Dorado County’s Great Out There

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great out there wine festival event at miraflores

As California has opened up after more than a year of COVID-19 restrictions, El Dorado County wineries are helping visitors celebrate a “return to normal” with a second offering in 2021 of their annual festival, the Great Out There. The first installment of the Great Out There weekend (formerly known as Passport weekend) was offered in April. The event and the new seated format were so popular with guests, the region is offering another showcase using the same format, July 16–18.

According to Leanne Davis, the owner of Via Romano Vineyards, “The Great Out There refers to the expansive and inspiring ‘out there’ of our Sierra landscape and geographical wine terroir, but it also alludes to the ‘out there’ of our minds and spirit. Our wineries and winemakers are creative, ingenious and free-thinking producers who express this quality in their wines and the experiences they provide.  We are also hoping that the visitors will come with their own sense of ‘the great out there’ and bring their adventurous spirits to the mix.”

Attendees can purchase tickets for one to three days ($45–$125) and then schedule tasting times at the locations they’d like to visit. Each of the participating wineries has two offerings, VIP and general admission. For a slightly higher cost, VIP ticket holders are given access to a unique and limited experience starting at 10 a.m., in addition to the general admission offerings (which start at 11 a.m.).

wine glasses lined up at madrona vineyards during great out there wine event

Those interested in attending the Passport to the Great Out There can peruse event offerings on the El Dorado Wines website, where listings such as these can be found:

Madrona Vineyards

General Admission: Join us for an enjoyable wine pairing of our popular sweet potato, black bean and corn tacos paired and our estate-grown, sustainably grown, and food-friendly wines. Also sample our newly released Crystal Range Barbera, with its wonderful fresh berry fruit characters, perfect for summertime fare!

VIP Admission: Join us for a morning chat with wine maker Paul Bush and enjoy a delectable mushroom crepe perfectly paired with our delicious wines to start your day (available at 10:30 a.m. only). The rest of the day VIPs will be treated like our very own club members, with additional discounts and all.

Mediterranean Vineyards

General Admission: Join us for an exclusive journey to the Mediterranean—a tour of tastes featuring world-class wines and cuisine sure to transport your taste buds to some of our favorite spots. General admission guests will enjoy sampling our award-winning wines, including a special release for Passport, our 2019 Fumé Blanc, and 2020 Rosé along with food pairings traditional to the Mediterranean.

VIP Admission: VIP guests will enjoy a reserved table in our VIP Oasis, special VIP pricing on wine, gourmet food pairings, and will receive two complimentary lawn tickets to our Summer Concert Series, Mediterranean Nights at the Vineyard.

Because reservations are required at all participating wineries, tickets are limited. Groups wishing to enjoy the event together should purchase tickets together.

For a complete overview of the event, attendee policies, and tickets, please visit El Dorado Wines.