.Tasting Destination: Byington Vineyard & Winery

Byington Winery is a wonderful place to visit. The estate consists of 95 acres of stunning property, including a lovely tasting room and impressive vineyards.
Weddings, corporate events and private parties are held both outdoors and indoors. Picnic tables, umbrellas, and gas and charcoal grills are available for visitors to use (bring your own tools) for a fee, and require advance booking. Picnic tables are on a first-come, first-served basis, but can be booked in advance for parties of 10 or more. Space heaters are also available, as well as a bocce ball court to enjoy.
The last time I visited Byington was to attend a friend’s get-together, and those invited brought food to share. To picnic, all that’s required from the winery is that you buy half a bottle of wine per person.
Santa Cruz native Andrew Brenkwitz is the winemaker at Byington, and he’s producing some excellent varietals. His 2013 Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay ($30) won a silver medal (American Wine Society) and gained 90 points in Food & Beverage World. With its delicate aromas of orange blossom, green apple and flavors of oaked vanilla and spice, this crisp and delicious wine is a great addition to your picnic, be it at Byington or elsewhere.
Grapes for this wine are harvested from the lush vineyards of Wrights Station, which produces “amazingly aromatic Chardonnay with poetic stories of concentrated green apple, universal citrus and finest vanilla flowers.” In a nutshell, this Chardonnay is delicious nectar captured in a bottle. 
Byington Vineyard & Winery, 21850 Bear Creek Road, Los Gatos. 408-354-1111. byington.com. Open Wednesday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Check the website for tasting fee.

Party at Bargetto Winery
The Capitola Art & Wine Festival Kick-Off—called Toga Party/A Celebration of Wine—will be held on the patio at Bargetto Winery from 6-9 p.m. on Thursday, May 19. Tickets are $40 in advance, $50 at the door and include a 2016 Capitola Art & Wine Festival glass, wine tasting from festival wineries, hors d’oeuvres, and live, silent and art auctions. Music by Music Now DJs. Reserve tickets at capitolachamber.com/events or call 475-6522. Bargetto Winery is at 3535 N. Main St., Soquel. This year’s Capitola Art & Wine Festival is on Sept. 10 & 11.


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