calaveras wineries

Calaveras Wineries | Wineries in Murphys - July 2004


On this trip we are spending the day in Murphys as we make our way to a two-night stay in a cabin in a remote area of the Stanislaus Forest. Murphys is a historic gold mining town in Calaveras County. There are several wineries in the area and this is the perfect opportunity to visit a few of the Calaveras wineries.

The town of Murphys is a great place to browse the shops and get a bite to eat. You can walk the entire town in a short time. There are several original buildings dating back to the 1850’s including Murphys Historic Hotel.

We plan to visit three wineries and eat lunch at one of the local eateries in the town.

Our first stop is the Milliaire Winery on Main St. in Murphys. The small winery is owned and operated by Steve and Liz Millier. The winery is housed in what was once a Flying A gas station. Remember those? We are very impressed by the Milliaire wines. The dry Gewürztraminer is delicious and, best of all, only $8. The Zinfandels are excellent as well as the Syrah. Our favorite wine is the Petit Syrah. It is a delicious full-bodied wine that will go well with our barbecue dinner that night. Milliaire winery makes small lots of wine from various vineyards located in nearby counties.

Our next stop is the Ironstone Vineyards. The winery is about a mile from Main St. in Murphys. This winery is the complete opposite of Milliaires’. It has a very big and fancy tasting room with lots of merchandise for sale, complete with a deli and a decked picnic area. They produce several varietals of wines including a reserve line of wines. Interestly, Steve Millier, the owner and winemaker at Milliaires, is also the winemaker at Ironstone. This a very popular winery attracting many visitors daily. The grounds surrounding the winery are very well manicured and abundant with a variety of colorful flowers. The winery is quite an attraction.

We head back to Main St. and have lunch at a very interesting spot, the Alchemy Market & Wine Bar. This is a terrific find. The food is excellent and they have a fabulous wine list that includes most of the local wines. This is also a great place to buy a picnic lunch if you are interested in picnicking at one of the nearby wineries. We rate our lunch at the Alchemy Market a 4.75 on our Five-Point rating system.

Our last stop of the day is the Stevenot Winery. It is three-mile drive up Sheep Ranch Road to San Domingo Road. The winery is located in a secluded area. The tasting room is very historic with lots of memorabilia on display. Gourmet deli items are for sale here and the grounds are very beautiful. It is a good choice for a picnic lunch. There is a grape arbor set up with tables so you can picnic in the shade and enjoy the peace and quiet of the winery. The wines are excellent and we especially liked the Tempranillo wine. This wine is unique to Stevenot and is the grape from which many Spanish wines are made. We also liked the Chardonnay, at a bargain price of $12.

It is time now to head off to our cabin but we have very much enjoyed our day in Murphys. Murphys is a great destination spot for a two-night getaway. There are plenty of wineries to visit and things to do. We will eventually add the Calaveras wine region to our website. In the meantime, for more information on this area visit these websites:

Calaveras Wine Association
Where to Stay in Murphys | Calaveras Visitor’s Bureau

   
wineries calaveras

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