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While there are an endless supply of wine bars and tastings in the Napa Valley, a hub of the California wine industry, it may come as a surprise that there are plenty of other locations and options for your inner wine connoisseur to break through. Don’t let Napa Valley obscure these other top places for wine tasting when making your “must try” list. Whether you are in San Francisco, the East Bay or North Bay, and whether you are on the hunt for destinations with complimentary cuisine, intimate atmospheres or even a bocce ball court, we take a look at some of the best spots that should be on your wine tasting tour to-do list.
827 Washington St.
Oakland, CA 94607
With a less-is-more attitude, District Oakland offers a short but sweet 40 wines by the glass, along with a more extensive private reserve list. The dinner menu is built to enhance the tasting experience with shareable plates, creating an intimate wine tasting treat with your friends and family. Not only does District Oakland have a premium wine list, they also offer 60 craft whiskeys.
408 Merchant St.
San Francisco, CA 94111
Boasting an impressive and internationally expanded wine list, The Hidden Vine Wine Bar is a perfect spot in the heart of the Financial District in San Francisco. With selections from Spain to Santa Barbara, and France to South Africa, The Hidden Vine won’t disappoint if you are seeking something unique. The food menu boasts fresh ingredients, with the restaurant location in close proximity to the farmer’s market, and meals to complement any choice of wine you are in the mood for. If you’re feeling up for a little fun, there is a full outdoor bocce ball court as well.
1040 Court St.
San Rafael, CA 94901
Established in the late 70s in Monterey, California, Mountain View Winery opened their tasting room in San Rafael in August of 2011, bringing the wine tasting experience to the heart of Marin County. Committed to ecologically sound production, Mountain View’s wine collection comes from growers following sustainable and organic farming methods, producing a world-class taste.
502 S. Palm Drive
Novato, CA 94949
In Northern Marin County, Beso Bistro provides hand-selected wines to accompany and complement their California-infused cuisine. Whether you’re enjoying the intimate indoor setting featuring reclaimed wood, accented walls and local artwork, or enjoying the open air patio, Beso Bistro’s atmosphere is an ideal setting.
301 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA 94105
Located in the mid-rise adjacent to the exclusive Millennium Tower residences, chef Michael Mina’s RN74 is an upscale treat with a California-French food menu, extensive wine list and even a wine dinner series menu to marry the two completely. Along with crafting award-winning cuisine, RN74 offers an impressive wine club that brings wine directly to your home, along with tips on complimenting meal suggestions.
Andrew Wilson started a music webzine to photograph and write about his favorite artists. He quickly notoriety as both a writer and photographer, and has since been published to a variety of national news sites. Andrew resides in the San Francisco Bay Area and is pursuing a degree in landscape photography.