Don't fight the shopping crowds the day after Thanksgiving. It's called Black Friday for a reason. Instead, pack up some turkey sandwiches, a couple of wine glasses and a few other goodies and hit the road for a wine tour.
On Nov. 28-30, wineries in the Yakima Valley will be celebrating Thanksgiving in Wine Country. More than 50 wineries will hold open houses, offering a chance to meet winemakers and chefs, taste library wines and new releases, nibble on savory tidbits, tour wineries and learn how to pair holiday foods with complimentary wines.
Buy an optional $25 Premiere Pass ($20 in advance) and you'll be treated to a variety of specialty food and wine pairings, library tastings and tours not available to the public. They're available at www.wineyakimavalley.org. Each pass comes with a 15-ounce wine glass.
For a complete list of participating wineries, directions and the discounts and specials available at each, go to www.wineyakimavalley.org or call 800-258-7270.
If you're willing to drive a bit farther, head for the Zillah area. The 15 wineries along the Rattlesnake Hills Wine Trail also are celebrating the Thanksgiving weekend on Nov. 28-30 with special tastings, discounts, tasty foods and a chance to hobnob with winemakers and winery owners.
Buy an optional $5 Passport, and you'll receive deeper discounts on purchases and/or complimentary reserve and port tastings. All the wineries sell the Passport cards, which are good at all 15 establishments along the Wine Trail.
For a list of the participating wineries, maps and information on the specials at each, go to www.rattlesankehills.com or call 888-375-7498.
Walla Walla Valley
Can't get away over Thanksgiving weekend? Walla Walla-area wineries will treat you to special tastings, savory food and art and craft displays the first week of December.
The wineries are generally open Dec. 5-7, but go to their websites to find out which are open when. You'll find them listed at http://wallawallawinenews.com or call 509-214-0315.
Several wineries charge a nominal tasting fee, which is generally refunded with a purchase.
*Loretto J. Hulse: 582-1513; firstname.lastname@example.org; more food and wine news at www.tricityherald.com/lifestyles/food