Classic tours take us into the hills of vineyards and wineries in well-known regions around the world, but once you have been there, done that, what comes next?
The unexpected and untraditional, of course.
From fermentation occurring underwater, to American gas stations being turned into wineries, CNN picked a few of the most unusual places wine has been made.
These are our favourite five:
Tank Garage Winery, Napa Valley, California
Napa Valley in California is to the States what the Cape Winelands is to South Africa. But it has one thing we don’t – a winery in a petrol station:
It’s built inside an abandoned 1930s gas station, and it won’t let you forget it: It’s decorated with old gas pumps, vintage Indian motorbikes and countless auto-related relics.
Even the tasting room pays homage to its roots: It’s located inside a former auto repair garage and is aptly named the Lubrication Tank.
Cantine Marisa Cuomo, Italy
Considered the most romantic winery in Italy, Marisa Cuomo is perched high on a cliff on the Amalfi Coast, 1,300 feet above sea level.
Its wine cellar — also carved directly into the cliff face — is equally impressive and filled with some of southern Italy’s finest white wines.
How beautiful is the azure colour of the Tyrrhenian Sea below?
Bodegas El Grifo, Canary Islands
A jet-black landscape with pockets of green vines? Only on the Canary Islands, where they grow Malvasia grapes at the island’s oldest winery, established more than 200 years ago.
Edivo Vina Winery, Croatia
Yup, it’s an underwater winery. The newly opened Edivo Viva winery is located off the coast of Drače on the Pelješac Peninsula of Croatia:
Its wines – stored in tightly-corked amphorae – are aged for one to two years in a sunken boat that acts as an underwater cellar.
According to the owners, the ocean’s naturally cool temperature and complete silence vastly improves the quality of the wine.
Vena Cava, Mexico
The beautiful, albeit strange, Vena Cava winery is built inside several fishing boats. Nestled in the Guadalupe Valley, it was created by architects Alejandro D’Acosta and Claudia Turrent, who “took a handful of abandoned vessels from a nearby Ensenada port, flipped them upside down and built the winery beneath”.
The watertight boat hulls keep the wines cool and dry in the desert valley heat, and the overall temperature of the winery naturally regulated.
In keeping with the theme of sustainability, all wine made at Vena Cava is completely organic and produced without pesticides or synthetic fertilizers [sic].
It’s amazing what a little imagination can do.
For more winery goodness, you can check CNN’s full list here.
Otherwise, stick with what you know and pour a glass of The Wolftrap. We suggest the red.
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