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Best Least Known Wine "Trail" 

Elliston-Westover-Chouinard Wineries

Tucked inside an almost rural stretch of land between Niles Canyon in Sunol and Castro Valley and located just west of the majority of Livermore Valley wineries, Elliston, Westover, and Chouinard are stops located along secluded East Bay back roads that make for a nice one- to two-hour tasting jaunt. Each of these small wineries buys or grows most of its varietals elsewhere, but offers an occasional wine that is grown directly on its premises, and each offers its own specialties that should not be ignored. Elliston Winery (whose elegant tasting parlor is located inside a 19th-century mansion — once a sanitarium), has a fine selection of whites, including an excellent Pinot Blanc and full-flavored sparkling wine. After exploring the grounds, follow the road that wends about eight or so miles through Sunol and up Palomares Road to the Spanish-style building that houses Westover Winery, known for its wide array of very potable ports. Finally, end at the award-winning Chouinard Winery, half a mile or so up from Westover, and enjoy a myriad full-bodied whites and big, hearty reds. The extensive wine-tasting menu includes a Granny Smith apple wine that is not to be missed.

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