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The Best Places to Drink Wine That Aren’t California

So long, Sonoma. Sip and savor new wines at these top—but sometimes under the radar—destinations around the world.

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Vineyard field in Old Mission Peninsula Michigan in the AutumnLe Do/Shutterstock

Michigan

If you haven’t heard of Michigan wine, it’s because it’s so good, it doesn’t make it out of the Great Lakes State. Most of the wineries are nestled near Lake Michigan, in small, quaint towns where you can enjoy the idyllic scenery. Along with classics like pinot noir, you’ll also find specialties like ice wine—sweet, delectable dessert wines produced from grapes that have frozen while still on the vine. Find the best winery in your home state.

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Lisa Kaminski/Taste of Home

Lubbock, Texas

Lubbock, Buddy Holly’s birthplace, is home to a burgeoning art scene and six award-winning wineries, all of which would be happy to host you and your foodie friends for a tasting. Highlights include McPherson Cellars, a 2019 James Beard Award nominee, with their vintage-made-new tasting room in downtown Lubbock.

Be sure to travel to the outskirts of town as well. Llano Estacado and English-Newsom Cellars both show off the very best of the Texas High Plains and Southern hospitality.

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Vineyard on the lake shore of Niagara on the lakeGilberto Mesquita/Shutterstock

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario

This 17th-century Canadian town is home to over 20 wineries, offering rare vintages and small batch specialties you won’t be able to find anywhere else. To sample the region’s famous ice wines, head to Inniskillin or Reif Estate.

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Fall Foliage, Bull Run Mountains, Loudon Valley, Fauquier County, VirginiaDavid Byron Keener/Shutterstock

Loudon County, Virginia

Outside of the hustle and bustle of Washington, D.C. awaits wine country steeped in history. Enjoy a glass while overlooking battle sites or the properties of former presidents. With over 40 wineries and wine tasting rooms to choose from, you can explore aromatic Viognier and classics like merlot. Master your red wine knowledge before you go.

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Beautiful view of glass of wine at sunsetLanaG/Shutterstock

Missouri Wine Country

Home to German immigrants and America’s First Wine District, this charming area should not be overlooked. The wines pay tribute to the German heritage, and visitors can ride bikes, hike and even stomp grapes. Discover less well-known varieties like buttery, fruity Chardonel and floral Vignoles.

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Red grapes ready to be harvested at a vineyard in Palisade, Colorado.Arina P Habich/Shutterstock

Palisade, Colorado

Nestled near stunning cliffs, Palisade offers an unforgettable wine experience. Tour more than 25 local wineries while enjoying music, or bike ride through the vines and peach orchards. The sunny days and cool nights result in flavorful varietals like syrah and cabernet franc.

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Villages at Goriska Brda, Slovenia.dejan_k/Shutterstock

Brda, Slovenia

Sometimes called “mini Tuscany,” this Slovenian wine region offers Italian-style wines without as many tourists. Savor a delicious meal at one of the small, family-run vineyards or at the iconic castle among the rolling hills. Be sure to try the Rebula, a strong and citrusy white known in the region.

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View of wine cellar and vineyards in the north of Tenerife, Canary Islands Spain. Harvest conceptNeyroM/Shutterstock

Tenerife, Canary Islands

On the largest island in the Canaries, you’ll find ancient wines nurtured by volcanic soil. The abundance of microclimates has resulted in five different wine regions, producing fresh, light whites and spicy, fruity reds. When you’re tasting wine, follow these tips from a sommelier.

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People Drink wine enjoy to nightDeepMeaning/Shutterstock

Yadkin Valley, North Carolina

In the verdant Yadkin Valley, small, award-winning wineries are situated alongside family-owned farms. A little-known secret, it’s rich in wineries—over 100! For an immersive wine experience, journey down the Yadkin Valley Wine Trail, where you can encounter 30 wineries with delicious cabernet sauvignons and chardonnays.

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A gazebo is tucked into a vineyard in Cutchogue, New York, one of the many vineyards on the North Fork of Long IslandJames Kirkikis/Shutterstock

Long Island, New York

Long Island harbors over 50 wineries, close enough that you can bike ride between them, and stop at farm stands or antique stores along the way. You can’t go wrong with the chardonnays or merlots, and you’ll also find experimental wines at places like Channing Daughters.

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