livermore wine routeLivermore wineries offer a little bit of everything for the wine country traveler. Most of these Livermore wineries are small and family-run wineries, running the gamut of boutique to outright funky and bizarre in some cases. This Livermore wine route on day one takes you to some historic sites at Thomas Coyne, Concannon, and Murietta Wells. Almost all the wineries have a picnic area so don’t forget to pack your picnic basket if the weather looks promising.  Once done with Day One, try the Livermore Wine Route Day Two.

Wineries to Visit on the Livermore Wine Route

  • Mitchell Katz – Exquisite grounds, spacious & busy tasting room
  • Fenestra Winery – Established in 1976, very friendly atsmosphere
  • Retzlaff Estate – Certified organic, cozy tasting room, fun
  • Page Mill Winery – Delicious Sauvignon Blanc, boutique
  • Concannon Vineyard – Historic & one of California’s oldest wineries
  • Murrieta’s Well – Owned by Wente, check out the historic well

Dining and Lodging Recommendations

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Winery Descriptions, Driving Directions, Tasting Room Hours

Mitchell Katz
We found the staff at Michell Katz to be very well informed and eager to give wine tasters information about the wines without being overbearing. The $10 tasting fee seams a bit stiff for Livermore but the good thing is that it can be applied to a purchase of wine. On the weekends this is one of the busiest wineries in the Livermore area. The tasting room is spacious and can accommodate a lot of visitors. There are also picnic benches where one can enjoy a picnic lunch. The wines were all very nicely made and well balanced. Our favorite was the Sangiovese.

Fenestra Winery
The Fenestra Winery has a very fun and inviting atmosphere. The tasting room is part of the old George True winery building built in 1889. It is a casual setting alongside the barrels and other winemaking equipment, no fancy Napa Valley like ambiance here. Lanny and Fran Replogle own the winery and they established Fenestra in 1976, thus making it one of the oldest wineries in the Livermore region. They make 7500 cases of wine per year, experimenting with many varietals. One of the favorites is the True Red, a blend of Rhone varietals. At $11.99 it is a very nice bargain wine.

Retzlaff Estate
Retzlaff is another funky and fun winery. You would never find anything quite like this at a Napa Valley tasting room. It is the fifth oldest winery in Livermore with a starting date of 1986. The winery is organically certified and is owned by Dr. Robert Taylor, who is also the winemaker. Dr. Taylor was a physicist at the Lawrence Livermore Lab and has used his scientific knowledge to make some delicious wines. The staff in the tasting room makes you feel quite at home. The grounds are beautiful and this is definitely a great spot for a picnic lunch

Page Mill Winery
Page Mill began on the San Francisco Peninsula in the Los Altos Hills near Page Mill Road. Once the winery outgrew its quarters, the winery moved across the Bay to Livermore. Dane Stark is the owner and winemaker. Dane still buys some grapes from the Los Altos Hills, but for his annual 2500 case production winery, the bulk of the grapes come from the Livermore area. The tasting room and winemaking cellars opened two years ago in a pretty setting on So. Livermore Avenue. We tasted the entire lineup of wine and were impressed by the quality and reasonable price range. The 2010 Sauvignon Blanc is outstanding. It is one of the best we have tried, crisp and refreshing, and full of flavors. It is the perfect picnic wine.

Concannon Vineyard
Concannon is a huge family operation in Livermore with 185 acres of vineyards and an annual case production of over 400,000 cases of wine. The winery’s first harvest was in 1883 making it one of the oldest wineries in California. John Concannon founded the winery, and the third and fourth generation family members run it today. Concannon’s flagship wine is Petite Sirah and it was the first winery to introduce this grape back in 1964. Concannon produces many other varietals worth tasting in their lovely tasting room.

Murrieta’s Well
When you approach the tasting room venue, look for the Artisan Well. The plaque on the well will give you the low-down and all you need to know about Murietta’s Well. Inside the tasting room you find a spacious and lively tasting room filled with visitors. There are four tasting bars to accommodate large weekend crowds that visit. The wines are all delicious, a great collaboration between Phil Wente and winemaker Sergio Traverso. This is a beautiful venue and a very popular spot for weddings and other special events. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the views. There is $10 tasting fee.

Additional Livermore wine information