white wine on table for tastingI’m a bit of a wine snob. Mainly because I’ve been spoiled with living in Europe for a few years after I went to college. I tasted wines from France, Spain and Italy—and some of the best, too. My exposure to fine wine wasn’t because of me, it was because of the company I worked for. I didn’t have a very well-paid position, but because we were in PR, we were sent some really great wines. And when we had to travel for work, my bosses had very expensive taste in wines. I rarely paid for the wine myself, but unfortunately, I developed a keen sense of what made for good wine.

As a result of being spoiled while I lived abroad, when I came home it was hard for me to appreciate cheap wine like I did during my younger years.  So when my friends wanted to go wine tasting, I assumed they would want to go to Napa, since we don’t live too far from there. But actually, they wanted to go to Old Sugar Mill, which is just outside Sacramento in Clarksburg, California. Having been away for so long, I hadn’t even heard of it before. And because I hadn’t heard of Old Sugar Mill before, I was pretty reluctant to go there.

But if I was the only one with an objection, I didn’t want to be the one holding up all of the fun. So I approved the wine tasting location, fully expecting to be more than underwhelmed.

When we arrived at Old Sugar Mill in Sacramento, I was pleasantly surprised with the beauty of the site. Since it was October, the winery was full of fall foliage and was brilliant with cool and calm weather. I almost felt like I was being transported to Paris in the fall. Almost.

When we got into the building of Old Sugar Mill, I saw that it was actually made up of several different wineries, eight to be exact. We started toward the back and the first winery we visited was called Rendez-vous Winery, the best wine tasting Sacramento CA. After reading some of their materials, I was pleased to see that the winemaker there also used to be a winemaker in Napa—he just recently began this winemaking endeavor in the Delta area.

After trying their wines, I was really impressed with what they were able to do with their blends and their white wine in particular. I love strong reds, but when it comes to whites, I like them syrupy and sweet. It’s weird, I know. But I was really happy with the wines I tried there.

We went to several other wineries as well and because of the first experience I had at Rendez-vous Wine Tasting, I was able to keep an open mind about what I would be tasting at Old Sugar Mill. It made me realize that good wine is good wine, no matter where it comes from.

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