Wine lovers have much to celebrate as California continues to loosen restrictions and wine festivals return to the landscape. El Dorado County wineries are celebrating with an in-person, but modified version, of their popular Passport to the Great Out There, the weekend of April 16–18. This marks the 30th anniversary for this beloved festival showcasing wines from the Sierra Foothills.
Attendees can purchase tickets for one to three days, at a cost between $45 and $125, and then schedule tasting times at the locations they’d like to visit. Each of the 20+ 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.).
Those interested in attending the Passport to the Great Out There can peruse event offerings on the El Dorado Wines website, where listings can be found describing the Passport-holder experience. For example:
Wofford Acres Vineyards in Camino
VIP Experience: Make your own Bordeaux-style blend! Uncork your inner winemaker and make a wine that reflects exactly what YOU like to drink. You’ll get to take home a sample-sized bottle to impress your friends with your new skill! Don’t forget to bring a picnic and enjoy our beautiful grounds and amazing views.
General Admission: La Mancha, our signature blend of Nebbiolo and Petit Sirah, is always a favorite whether tasted from the barrels or poured from a bottle. Discover the differences between an older vintage, a barrel sample and our current release. Enjoy our incredible views along with a delicious slider!
Skinner Vineyards in Fair Play
VIP Experience: VIP passport holders will enjoy exclusive access to winemaker Adam Smith as he guides tasters through three thrilling vertical flights of Skinner Vineyards Estate Grenache, Mourvedre and Syrah. Each flight will begin with a barrel tasting of the 2020 vintage alongside the 2019 and 2018 vintages for a tasting that will delight the senses. The experience will be hosted in Skinner’s state-of-the-art winery which will be only open to VIPs. Seating will be limited to just 24 guests, so be sure to book your spot early!
General Admission: Venture to Skinner Vineyards & Winery for some high-elevation fun during Passport weekend. From our Fair Play tasting room perched at 2,740 feet (elevation) we will be taking you on the thrilling adventure of the grape to the glass as you’re guided through a seated tasting of our delectable Rhone-style wines paired with a variety of small bites designed to enhance the wines and excite the senses.
Because reservations are required at all participating wineries, tickets are limited. Groups wishing to enjoy the event together, should purchase tickets together. This is just one of the changes in procedure affecting this year’s event. For a complete overview of the event, attendee policies, and tickets, please visit the Passport website.