New Jersey is home to over 50 different wineries. What does this mean for them? It’s no longer just about crafting the perfect bottle. Wineries go out of their way to create an experience for their guests. The lighting, music, seating, ambiance, wine, and more are carefully paired together to craft a multi-sensory experience for tourists. But with the numerous wineries that call the East Coast home, how do you know where to begin?
A wine tour affords you the opportunity to take in all of it. A wine trail is carefully designed to have something for everyone. Those new to wine tasting will come to understand flavors and notes they never recognized before. An experienced wine tourist will learn secrets to the growing & producing process they never knew. Whether you’re looking for your next date night, bachelorette party, company outing, or evening with friends, a wine tour is an experience you won’t regret. But for those who haven’t done it before, it can seem overwhelming. How should you prepare for a wine tour? What do you need to know to get the most out of it?
1. Tour Early in the Day
Of course, this is not always an option. But if possible, we encourage guests to tour early in the day rather than later. Our wineries often feature events such as live music, bonfires, food pairings, and more in the evenings. While these activities are exciting, if you’re looking to visit multiple different locations, you’re probably not looking for long wait times. One of guests’ favorite parts of wine touring is the opportunity to speak with the makers and growers. By visiting during their slower hours, you give yourself more opportunities for meaningful conversations with the winemakers. Local wineries are often family-owned and operated by a small, busy team. If it’s peak season and there’s a live band playing, they might not have much time to guide you through the tasting experience. Additionally, some of our favorite New Jersey wineries sit on acres of rich, green vineyards. Strolling through the vineyards under the warm, early afternoon sun is a treat you don’t want to miss.
2. Limit the Number of Destinations
You want to leave each winery with a deep understanding of it. You want to taste dozens of wines, experience the environment, and enjoy the great company at each location. You can’t get this done with 10 different wineries on your list. The true wine tasting experience makes time for meandering. We suggest limiting your tour to 3-5 locations in a day. This allows you time to taste, savor, discuss, and explore. Wine tours are meant to be shared. You’ll want time to chat with your partner, group, the growers, or other winery guests. It’s better to go home thinking about the other wineries you’d like to visit, than the conversations you didn’t have time to entertain.
3. Formulate Questions in Advance
Now is your chance to talk to the experts. As a wine lover, you want to understand what produces the flavors you adore. This is what enables you to fine-tune your palate and discover more bottles you’ll love. So take the opportunity to get your questions out. As you’re tasting, keep a mental list of questions you have for the makers. Leading up to your tour, think about questions you might’ve had in the past about wine. Encourage your friends to do the same. You’ll enjoy picking up the winemaking knowledge they draw out as well.
Plan Your Wine Tour in Jersey
Ready to plan your tour? We work with over 8 different wineries in South Jersey to present you with the best local wine available. Visit our trail map to begin planning your route. Explore each of the individual winery pages to find out more about the wine they produce, how they got started, when to visit, and more. Your next adventure awaits.