Niles Canyon Railway is offering another summer of great wine tasting aboard the popular Livermore Valley Wine Tasting Special. They will have four runnings of the special during the summer and most will most likely sell out prior to the date of the train so get your tickets early at the Niles Canyon Railway ticket site. Wine Educator Steve Ferree will demonstrate his passion for Livermore Valley wineries. Each of the four trains had a collection of five different Livermore Valley wines, usually two whites, two reds and a dessert wine. Each was paired with a cheese personally selected for that specific wine.
The passengers learn much about the history of the Niles Canyon Railway and the history of wine in Livermore Valley. The Livermore Valley Wine Tasting Specials are a trip through History. Each of the cars on the train was historic, refurbished by a loving group of volunteers who spend countless hours restoring them. The route was part of the original Transcontinental Railroad. Niles Canyon was the link from the main railroad to the San Francisco Bay since 1869.
History is also found in Livermore Valley. It is one of California's oldest wine regions; the Livermore Valley played a pivotal role in shaping California's wine industry. Spanish missionaries planted the first wine grapes in the Livermore Valley in the 1760s. In the 1840s, California pioneers looking for outstanding vineyard sites began planting grapes in the region. Robert Livermore planted the first commercial vines in the 1840s. Pioneer winemakers C. H. Wente, James Concannon, and Charles Wetmore recognized the area's winegrowing potential and founded their wineries in the early 1880s.
Livermore Valley captured America's first international gold medal for wine in 1889 at the Paris Exposition, putting California on the world wine map, long before the famous Paris Tasting in 1976 where Napa finally caught up and won an international award.
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