Apple Hill Wineries
The Apple Hill wineries are scattered among apple orchards in the foothills of California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains in El Dorado County. The wineries are just off of highway 50 with most of them are in Camino and a few in Placerville. The area is known for its rural ambiance and apple orchards offering apple pies and cider. The wineries are family-run and make small lots of wines. There are over a dozen wineries in the area and wine tasting is typically complimentary.
You can reach the wineries by taking three different exits off of highway 50. The first exit traveling east on highway 50 is the Schnell School exit in Placerville. This takes you to the west end of Carson Road where you will find Boeger Winery. Fenton Herriott Vineyards and Lava Cap Winery are also near by. The Carson Road exit is next, but can be very busy in the fall during the peek of the apple season. This exit takes you to five different tasting rooms on Carson Road that includes Jodar Vineyards, Aurgia Wine Cellars, Ursa Vineyards, Illuminare Estates and Coulson Winery. The last exit, the Cedar Grove exit, is at the east end of Carson Road near Primus Vineyards.
Boeger Winery features the award wining Estate Zinfandel and Barbera wines. Boeger also produces a varietal Merlot and other innovative blends from over twenty-five varieties of grapes. The original tasting room, which is still standing today, was built in 1872 from stones cleared to plant the vineyards. Boeger has beautiful grounds complete with a pond.
If you continue up Carson road heading east, you will come to Union Ridge Road on your left. After turning left on to Union Ridge Road you will see Hassler Road on the right. A little ways down Hassler Road is Fruitridge Road, where if you turn left it will take you to Lava Cap Winery. Lava Cap is known for its rich and elegant wines such as Petite Sirah, red Bordeaux varietals, Zinfandel, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. They have a large tasting room and an outside deck that has nice views of the vineyards.
Further up on Hassler Road you will come to North Canyon Road. Make a left and Stones Throw Vineyards is there at the corner of Hidden Valley Lane and North Canyon Road. The Apple Pantry Farm is right next store, so you can have some apple pie or cider before or after wine tasting. Stones Throw offers a “family friendly” winery where the wines are hand crafted in the old world style. The winery offers a variety of wines from Port, Muscat, Zinfandel, Syrah and Merlot to apple wine.
Just up Hidden Valley Lane, you will come to Wofford Acres Vineyards. Wofford specializes in white and red wines. Their motto is “Come for the wine and stay for the view”. The winery does have spectacular views of rolling hills covered with pine trees. The picnic table area is a great place to have a picnic while relaxing and enjoying the view.
Visiting the wineries of Apple Hill is a relaxing trip in the pine covered foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The wineries are about a forty five minute drive from Sacramento and well worth the trip. You can learn more about this area and other wineries in Sierra Foothills by visiting SierraWineries.com.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Rick enjoys traveling around Northern California. He loves the natural beauty the state has to offer. Some of his favorite places to visit are Lake Tahoe and the California Redwoods. His website is a guide to the Sierra Foothill wineries: SierraWineries.com