Raise a Glass to Adventure: Explore the Palisade Wineries in Western Colorado

Carboy Winery at Mt. Garfield Estate

One thing we love sharing is the spirit of adventure. From exploring new places to trying new things, we’re always up for a good time. And now we’re here to share one of our favorite adventures with you — wine tasting in one of the most stunning parts of the United States. If you’re planning a trip to Western Colorado, wine tasting at the Palisade wineries is an adventure you won’t want to miss.

Explore Western Colorado’s Wine Country

Palisade Vineyard

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Colorado wine is known for its unique, delicious flavors, and the wineries in Palisade are no exception. The Western Slope, in particular, has built a much-deserved reputation as a top wine region. This gorgeous wine country benefits from diverse terrain and 300 days of sunshine to produce wines of consistently high quality. Due to the elevation, moderate climate, and soil rich with clay, Palisade wines present a natural acidity aficionados and casual enjoyers find refreshing.

Below, we’ll explore some of the most beloved wineries the area has to offer — many of which are family-run. So, get ready to raise a glass and join us on a journey through some of the best Palisade wineries in Western Colorado!

Discover the Hidden Gems of Palisade Wineries

Sommelier pouring wine

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No matter if you’re a wine enthusiast or just looking for a fun day trip, visiting Colorado wineries is a must-do activity. With enchanting scenery, award-winning wines, and a laid-back atmosphere, prepare to be dazzled by some of the most exquisite Colorado wine around.

BookCliff Vineyards

BookCliff Vineyards

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

BookCliff Vineyards is a Palisade winery situated next to picturesque vineyards stretching over beautiful, rolling hills. It was founded by two engineers who discovered Palisade during a backpacking trip and soon made it their mission to create top-quality wines through sustainable farming of 100% Colorado grapes.

Here, visitors can soak up staggering vistas while savoring some delicious wine in the Palisade tasting room or take a vineyard tour to really explore the winery. Harvest season during fall is particularly magical, with the colors of the changing leaves creating a stunning backdrop for visitors.

BookCliff Vineyards also has a tasting room in Boulder, Colorado. The winery’s barrel room in Boulder doubles as an event space for dinners, classes, and parties, offering a cozy and intimate atmosphere with charm.

The staff at BookCliff Vineyards are friendly and knowledgeable, and they’ll ensure you learn something new about their quality wines with every visit.

Sauvage Spectrum Winery

Sauvage Spectrum Winery

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

Wine tasting is as much about the experience as it is the flavors — and at Sauvage Spectrum Winery, you get the best of both worlds. This friend-owned winery in the heart of the Grand Valley AVA has built its reputation on high-quality, sparkling wines. They produce over 26 varieties of hand-harvested wine, all made from locally-grown grapes, that boast the true taste of Colorado wine.

This vineyard is a hidden gem in the Palisade wine scene, and it’s sure to be an experience you won’t forget. They also have a wine lounge in Ouray, Colorado.

Fall in love with their wine? You can join the Cellar Select Society and receive quarterly shipments straight from the vineyard.

The Ordinary Fellow

Wine barrels

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For an experience that’s anything but ordinary, visit The Ordinary Fellow. Nestled in the heart of Palisade, this winery stands out with its beauty and charm — and its adopt-a-barrel opportunity where guests can actually “adopt” their own barrel of wine. The cozy tasting room has a remarkable history, as it’s a conversion of the former United Fruit Growers COOP peach packing shed.

While named after an old English pub, you can nevertheless be sure each of their hand-crafted wines are made with the finest grapes sourced from Colorado vineyards. Try their 2021 Colorado Cabernet Sauvignon, firm with grippy tannins and bright red cherry notes.

Plum Creek Cellars

Plum Creek Winery

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

At Plum Creek Cellars, expect a fantastic array of wines, from their award-winning Chardonnay to the juicy, refreshing fruit wine. This winery is popular thanks to the fun and lively atmosphere, and the friendly staff happily guides you through the tasting process while offering tidbits about the winemaking process on the estate.

Wine isn’t the only attraction here. Tasters can also snack on a cheese and charcuterie board lovingly paired with their wine of choice. The tasting room opens in June.

Plum Creek Cellars was purchased by another Palisade winery, Colterris. Despite the new ownership, the Plum Creek brand still delivers the same high-quality wines and charming tasting room it’s well-known for.

Colterris has over 70 acres of vineyards in Colorado, making it the largest estate-grown winery in the state.

Red Fox Cellars

Red Fox Cellars

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

Wine lovers more on the adventurous side will appreciate the unconventional approach to winemaking at Red Fox Cellars. None of the winemakers are classically trained, which helps them bring a fresh perspective to the winemaking process and experiment with unique blends and flavors. These rich and exciting flavors are evident in their red and white blends.

The tasting room at Red Fox Cellars offers a relaxed and fun atmosphere that perfectly complements their bold wines. You can unwind in the rustic indoor area or, in the late spring, summer, or early fall, take in the peaceful views out on the patio, where you can also sample different food trucks, live music, and outdoor games.

Carboy Winery at Mt. Garfield Estate

Carboy Winery at Mt. Garfield Estate

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

Wine enthusiasts will be especially thrilled to take their tasting journey to Carboy Winery at Mt. Garfield Estate. As one of the largest producers in the state, Carboy Winery is an unforgettable experience.

The breathtaking scenery of the vineyards against the awe-inspiring backdrop of Mt. Garfield provides the perfect setting for sipping on some of the finest wines in Colorado. Carboy’s tasting room features a setting that blends a rustic yet modern ambiance with an emphasis on holistic sustainability.

From crisp whites to full-bodied reds, Carboy Winery’s award-winning wines offer a variety of flavors from estate-grown grapes and are a must-try for any wine devotee.

Carlson Vineyards

Carlson Vineyards

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

Nestled in the heart of Colorado’s Western Slope, Carlson Vineyards is a family-owned and operated winery that’s been crafting exceptional wines for over three decades. With inspirational views of the majestic Book Cliff Mountains and lush vineyards stretching as far as the eye can see, this winery offers unparalleled wine tasting.

Carlson Vineyards has a selection of award-winning wines showcasing the unique terroir of the region. Signature wines include the Laughing Cat Sweet Baby Red — offering the smoothest of tastes — and the Terra 2020. This lovely blend belongs to the winery’s Wren Quinn Project, which donates part of the proceeds to local causes.

The atmosphere is laid-back, so if you’re a wine expert or just starting your journey, you’ll be made to feel welcome if you add this charming stop to your tour of fine wine in the Western Palisades.

Mesa Park Vineyards

Mesa Park Vineyards

Image Credit: John Fielder.

Mesa Park Vineyards is a family-owned winery that gives visitors captivating views of Grand Mesa Mountain. Mesa Park has a few varieties of wine featuring the flavors and characteristics of Colorado-grown grapes. Their best sellers include the signature Family Reserve Red and Barn Owl Red, which goes fabulously with grilled meat.

The tasting room at Mesa Park Vineyards is permanently closed. Check their website for future updates.

Hermosa Vineyards

Wine tasting

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Cleverly named, Hermosa Vineyards started out as an apple orchard-turned vineyard. It’s a cozy little winery tucked away in the heart of the Colorado wine country, unmissable for anyone who loves to combine great drinks with beautiful scenery. The winemakers here have expertly crafted some of the most distinctive blends you won’t find anywhere else — including their popular Cabernet Franc.

Hermosa Vineyards has the perfect atmosphere for relaxing and enjoying a glass (or three) of locally-made Colorado wine.

Two Rivers Winery

Grape Vineyard

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Though this last winery falls outside the Palisade area, it’s still worth a visit for those seeking an unforgettable Colorado wine-tasting experience. Two Rivers Winery is a beautiful Tuscan-style building located in Grand Junction, CO, near the gateways of the stunning Colorado National Monument.

Two Rivers Winery is known for producing award-winning, premium wines like the Chardonnay, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon. My personal favorite is their Merlot!

Whether you’re visiting the winery for a tasting or hosting a special occasion, you’ll be treated to a fun-filled experience by the owners or the winemaker, who are always ready to answer questions.

Where To Stay and What To Do

Colorado National Monument

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Alongside high desert landscapes, dramatic mesas, and gorgeous Colorado wineries, there are many other fun things to do in Grand Junction and Palisade that will make for a memorable trip.

Hike, Bike, Paddle, Rock Climb

Rim Rock Drive

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There is no shortage of outdoor adventure in Colorado, and Grand Junction is no exception. If you’re visiting the Palisade wineries, you’ll have the chance to bike the Kokopelli Trails, hike through the Independence Monument Trail, paddleboard across the Colorado River, or climb in Unaweep Canyon. Grand Junction Adventures is a local guiding outfit that can help you plan some fun local activities.

Enjoy a Meal at Pêche

Peche.

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

For a creative and artistic meal, wine lovers may want to try the restaurant Pêche. and its mouthwatering seasonal menu. The venue is dedicated to ensuring that each visitor has a once-in-a-lifetime experience where thought goes into every dish served at the restaurant.

Places To Stay

Spoke and Vine Motel

Image Credit: Courtesy of Colorado Wine Board.

If you’re not a “visit 10 wineries in one day” kind of person, the Spoke and Vine Motel is the perfect place to power down for the evening after a long day of tastings. It’s located within walking distance of downtown Palisade and is the perfect place if you want your canine companion to join you. You’ll also have the option to rent a cruiser bike if you want an exciting ride after your winery adventure.

Of course, you may want a less rustic, more modern experience. For that, the Hotel Maverick is a great place to rest and relax and is only a few miles from many of the wineries and the enchanting red rock canyons. Enjoy a cool dip in the pool or have an alfresco dinner on the balcony as you gaze out at the canyons.

Visit Colorado Wineries for More Than the Wine

Palisade Vineyard

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For anyone looking for a unique adventure in Colorado, wine tasting in Palisade is a must. Between the breathtaking scenery, award-winning wines, and relaxing atmosphere, the Palisade wineries will not disappoint!

If you’re a local, be sure to check out the wine club offerings at many of these wineries. And if you’re visiting for the weekend, many of these wineries will ship wine to your house. You can be sure that most are run by local families, guaranteeing you authentic tasting and a truly intimate experience in Palisade wine country.

Images courtesy of Colorado Wine Board, John Fielder, and Depositphotos.com.

This article was produced and syndicated by The Happiness Function.

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Ashlee Fechino

Ashlee Fechino is an outdoor recreation and travel writer sharing the best-kept secrets that aren’t in your typical guidebook. Her goal is to inspire people to travel with a sense of adventure by sharing hidden gems across the U.S. and beyond. She is married to an expat Argentine, Pablo. They camp in their Aliner often and love wandering the world. Follow their latest adventures on Instagram @thehappinessfxn.

1 Comments

  1. Burt Randall on April 23, 2023 at 12:35 pm

    I love wine !!

    Although I don’t drink it anymore, this was a cool article to read !!