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Etude is the San Francisco | Napa Valley global winner for the 2018 Best of Wine Tourism Awards. They farm and operate with the goal of sustaining a healthy environment and eco-system, so they may be responsible neighbors and community members.

Monverde Wine Experience Hotel has been a long time affair of mine ever since I visited it for the first time, in 2016. Quite unsurprisingly, this stunning and picturesque wine hotel was the regional winner of the “Sustainable Wine Tourism Practices” category of the Best Of Wine Tourism 2018 awards, following on from winning the “Accommodation” category in 2017.

There’s no doubting the wine credentials of Bodega Casa Vigil. Owned by one of Argentina’s most prized winemakers, Alejandro Vigil, this is a wine production of top draw. However Bodega Casa Vigil is about more than just making fantastic wines from local grapes. It is also about respecting the environment those grapes come from. The green credentials and community focus of this family winery and restaurant is what deservedly led to a Great Wine Capitals Award for Best Sustainable Wine Tourism Practices in 2018.

This is where the westerly winds blow through the valley, bringing the fresh breeze that speaks of freedom, strength, renewal. Westwind Wines is the name of a traditional winery in the middle of Wachenheim, right on the border between the two wine regions of Rheinhessen and the Palatinate.

Thanks to their open door philosophy, welcoming guest for tastings, lunches and dinners in the property, Château de la Dauphine have already received two GOLD BEST OFs, in the categories of “Architecture & Landscape” in 2014, and “Food” in 2016.

They have now added another GOLD Best Of Wine Tourism award for “Sustainable wine tourism practices”, for their new Green Tour. This 'Visite Nature' will appeal to anyone looking to understand the challenges that face vine growers. The tour gives guests an intimate understanding of the ethical and environmental initiatives at the property.

Before the arrival of electricity, pumps, air conditioning and heating, wineries dug underground cellars to vinify and age their wines.  A fine example of this architecture is Bodega Conde de los Andes in Ollauri, the largest underground network of ageing cellars in the Rioja region. Loving maintenance and respect for ancient winemaking traditions by the owners, the Murua family, earned the winery an award for sustainable wine tourism from the Great Wine Capitals Global Network in 2018.

For Pam and Tony Barich of Whistling Kite Vineyards in South Australia’s Riverland district, the answer to creating a sustainable and healthy future are organics and biodynamics.

Hop aboard a hand-built replica of a California Street Cable Car, the ones used in San Francisco from the late 1890s to the early 1930s, for a Napa Valley Wine Tasting tour adventure through the beautiful Napa Valley. Every detail, from the all-wooden carriage to the solid brass bell, is an authentic feature right off the original blueprints. This Napa Valley wine tour is an experience you will never forget.

There are never enough excuses to pay a visit to the enchanted Douro Valley, one of the most prominent wine regions in the world. Therefore I was very glad to accept the invitation of CoolTour Oporto, the regional winner of the “Wine Tourism Services” category of the Best of Wine Tourism 2018 awards, to go on a group guided tour to the Douro Valley.

Entre Copas or ‘between glasses’ is where most of the fun in wine happens. Between a couple glasses of wine one evening with a friend; over a romantic glass or two of sparkling wine on a date; or over a cheeky glass of wine at lunch with a colleague. It is between the glasses where conversation happens and personal connections form, and that’s exactly the ethos behind the Entre Copas event at the Sheraton’s Mirador restaurant in Mendoza, Argentina.

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