Celebrate Grape Harvest Season This Fall at Some Lesser Known Wineries and Events Across the Country

Wine Writers/Travel Editors

SOUTHLAKE, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Sept. 25, 2006–While Northern California’s famed Napa and Sonoma Valleys lure travelers each fall with the promise of flavorful wine and scenic landscapes, there are travel-worthy destinations around the country that boast a plentiful grape harvest season and countless wines worth exploring. Travelocity’s editor-at-large has unearthed wineries, festivals and tasting events across North America that travelers should add to their fall itineraries.

“Wine tours and events have become increasingly popular over the past decade,” said Amy Ziff, Travelocity editor-at-large. “While most wineries stay open year-round, fall marks grape harvest season and the best time to celebrate the art of wine making and a successful harvest through events such as wine tours and fall festivals.”

For the wine lover who wishes to try something new, Ziff suggests conducting taste-tests at these great fall destinations:

Connecticut Wine Trail: Sixteen wineries dot the Connecticut Wine Trail, which winds through the picturesque New England countryside. Stop by Sharpe Hill Vineyard located on a sweeping 110 acres in Pomfret with a stunning vista of three states; Stonington Vineyard in Mystic offers a good “how to” tour of the wine cellar; and Hopkins Vineyard for $5 wine tasting and a beautiful Lake Waramaug view.

Texas Hill Country: The Lone Star State’s Hill Country doubles as wine country, where travelers can explore the wineries and vineyards of this central Texas region during the fall crush season. Local favorites include Becker Vineyard’s Viognier and Grape Creek Vineyard’s flagship Cabernet Trois.

Southern Idaho: This spunky up-and-comer in the wine world sits at a higher altitude than most wine-growing regions, and its soil has greater volcanic ash content, producing grapes recognized for their flavorful and distinctive character. Taste award-winning Rieslings at the Ste. Chapelle Winery, and enjoy live jazz at The Winery at Eagle Knoll.

Oklahoma: A latecomer to the wine industry, dozens of wineries and vineyards have popped up across Oklahoma in recent years. Experience Stone Bluff Cellars’ award winning wines in a rustic yet elegant setting. Nestled in the hills near Tulsa, the winery hosts a monthly Sunset at Stone Bluff event where Culinary Institute of Arts Chef Mikael Harp creates a five-course menu for the guests.

Fall Wine Festivals & Events

— Annual Okanagan Fall Wine Festival (Okanagan, British Columbia), Sept. 29 – Oct. 8, 2006

— 55th Annual Niagara Wine Festival (Niagara, Ontario), Sept. 22 – Oct. 1, 2006

Wine Tour Tips

— Pick up a winery map at your destination so you don’t miss out on the best stops.

— Eat a good breakfast before the wine tasting journey begins, and make sure to break for lunch.

— Visit a few wineries in the morning and a few in the afternoon, giving your palate a rest in between.

— Take notes at each winery so you don’t forget what you did and did not like.

About Travelocity

Travelocity is committed to being the traveler’s champion — before, during and after the trip and guarantees everything about a customer’s booking will be right. If it’s not, Travelocity will work with its partners to make it right, right away. This customer-driven focus, backed by live 24/7 phone support, great prices and powerful shopping technology has made Travelocity the fifth largest travel agency in the U.S. — booking $7.4 billion in travel worldwide in 2005. Based in Southlake, Texas, Travelocity also owns and operates Travelocity Business(SM) and GetThere for corporate travelers, lastminute.com, a leader in European online travel and ZUJI, a leader in Asia-Pacific online travel. Travelocity is owned by Sabre Holdings Corporation (NYSE:TSG), a world leader in travel commerce.

Andrea Collins, 212-715-2222

SOURCE: Travelocity