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Wednesday, 10 May 2017 10:47

Yosemite's Closest Entrance Reopens

TASTE News Service, May 10, 2017 – This week, travelers can again access the valley in Yosemite National Park directly from Tuolumne County's entrance in Groveland, California via the newly repaired and reopened Highway 120.

Wednesday, 03 May 2017 10:45

Tenaya Lodge: Green-Friendly Road Trips

TASTE News Service, May 1, 2017 - As road trip season gears up, Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite— a resort two miles from the southern entrance to Yosemite National Park— is now an ideal basecamp for those traveling eco-friendly thanks to the recent installation of eight Tesla Supercharging Stations.

Friday, 28 October 2016 16:49

What's New, What's Cool at Tahoe

HeavenlyAction Selects 001 1 Picmonkey

TASTE News Service, October 28, 2016 - Coming off one of the longest seasons in recent memory with chairlifts turning for nearly seven months, the Ski Lake Tahoe resorts are ramping up for another snowcapped winter season with ongoing capital improvements, new VIP services/amenities and additional air service topping the list of "what's new" and "what's cool" on the slopes heading into the 2016-17 season.

Lake Tahoe Cruise Boat picmonkey


TASTE News Service, June 14, 2016 - Many places have a defined travel season, but Lake Tahoe is an all year around destination with plenty of activities at any time of year.

snowboarder at Tahoe PicmonkeyBoarder enjoys fresh snow this weekBy Daniel Pistoressi

March 10, 2016 - This winter's monster El Niño continues to deliver on the slopes of Lake Tahoe with this week's storm snowfall totals cresting the five-foot mark at summit elevations. Powder-coated skiers and snowboarders are currently reporting the best conditions of the entire season, an epic winter that has already seen more than 400 inches of snowfall, with another round of powerful storms on track to deposit multiple feet of snow over the weekend.

Tuesday, 29 December 2015 15:29

Chef’s Holidays Returns to Yosemite

chefs holidays Gala Dinner Table PicmonkeyTASTE News Service December 29, 2015 – The coming months are an especially beautiful time to visit Yosemite as the valley is blanketed in fresh snow and the winter brings a solitude that you cannot match any other time of the year in this very popular destination. The view from the tall windows of the Ahwahnee’s solarium is lovely anytime. On an afternoon when deer are crossing the meadow as new snow falls, it’s just about perfect.

High Noon posterTASTE News Service, October 29, 2015 - From these classic movies --High Noon, The Great Race, Back to the Future III and Big Valley, to television series that brought the big outdoors into American living rooms such as Bonanza, Little House on the Prairie and Lassie, a small area in Northern California has played a big role: creating lifelike settings and story lines to recreate early America. For Tuolumne County, set against the backdrop of Yosemite National Park in Northern California, the job was easy.

As early as 1919, filmmakers recognized the area as a valuable and convenient source for location filming. Gold rush era buildings with wood plank sidewalks and slamming screen doors, Main Street with a Wells Fargo Express office, white picket fences and grand hotels stood ready for their close-up. The area is still rich in natural features and vintage architectural styles, big sky landscape, rushing rivers and lakes, and one key ingredient – abundant California light. Producers and directors discovered that almost any type of scenery in the United States and beyond could be replicated on film in Tuolumne County.

Sunday, 04 October 2015 15:15

Celebrate the Holiday Season at Yosemite

Vinters Holiday at Ahwahnee 2 PicmonkeyA lighter moment at Vintners Holiday tastingTASTE News Service October 5, 2015 – Winter in Yosemite and Mariposa County is an especially beautiful time to be outdoors enjoying a range of activities from horse-drawn sleigh rides, skiing at Badger Pass Ski Resort, ice skating, snow shoeing and photography.

The area is home to many holiday traditions, too. Among these are the annual Vintner's Holidays and the Bracebridge Dinner held at The Ahwahnee in Yosemite National Park. Other events, many with a family-friendly orientation, include gingerbread house decorating workshops, kids’ dinner with Santa, and Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve at the Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite, as well as many outdoor activities.

Yosemite Vintners Holidays PicmonkeyWinemaker-led tasting at the lodge

TASTE News Service July 16, 2015 – Yosemite’s Ahwahnee Hotel has announced the lineup for the annual Vintners' Holidays series showcasing some of California's best wineries. Now in their 34th year, the Vintners' Holidays are two and three-day sessions held between November 8 and December 3. These gatherings celebrate the fall harvest with wine tastings and seminars and provide a forum for guests to meet and mingle with the vintners. Culmination of each sessions is a dinner prepared by Executive Chef Percy Whatley accompanied by the often rare or limited-release wines.

"Vintners' Holidays offers the best of food and wine combined with the best of nature," said Food & Wine Series Events Manager Kathy Langley. "This year's exciting lineup of vintners includes returning favorites such as Silver Oak Cellars and Rombauer Vineyards in addition to new participants that include Dehlinger Vineyards and Verdad Wines."

Since its inception as a small gathering of vintners and hotel guests in the winter of 1982, Vintners' Holidays has become a premier California event for wine aficionados and winemakers alike. Vintners' Holidays allows vintners to relax after the busy harvest season and share the fruits of their labor with Yosemite visitors in one of California's most stunning landscapes.

The 2015 Vintners' Holidays schedule includes the following vintners and event moderators:

Session 1: November 8-10

Moderator: Dan Berger, Wine Journalist & Judge

John Williams, Frog's Leap

Shauna Rosenblum, Rock Wall Wine Co.

Eva Dehlinger, Dehlinger Vineyards*

Cathy Corison, Corison Winery            

Session 2: November 11-12

Moderator: Dan Berger, Wine Journalist & Judge

Kathleen Inman, Inman Family Wines*

John Conover, Plumpjack Winery

Charles Heintz, Charles Heintz Vineyards & Winery*

Alan Cannon, Rombauer Vineyards

Session 3: November 15-17

Moderator: Fred Dame, Master Sommelier

Louisa Sawyer Lindquist, Verdad Wines*

Beth Milliken, Spottswoode

Steve Dutton & Dan Goldfield, Dutton Goldfield

Bob Lindquist, Qupe

Session 4: November 18-19

Moderator: Evan Goldstein, Master Sommelier

Joy Sterling, Iron Horse Vineyards

Rob McNeill, Don & Sons

Jeff Stewart, Hartford Family Winery

Justin Baldwin, Justin Winery

Session 5: November 29 - December 1

Moderator: Peter Marks, Master of Wine

Susan Lueker, Simi Winery

Robb Talbott, Talbott Vineyards

Jeff Mangahas, Williams Selyem Winery

Chris Benziger, Benziger Family Winery

Session 6: December 2-3

Moderator: Peter Marks, Master of Wine

Ted Benet & Deborah Cahn, Navarro Vineyards

Michael McNeill, Hanzell Vineyards*

Chrissy Wittman, Wild Horse Winery

Daniel Baron, Silver Oak Cellars

*Indicates new participating winery or winemaker this year.

Editor’s note: The Ahwahnee, a AAA Four-Diamond hotel featuring rustic architecture with Native American, Middle Eastern and Art and Crafts design elements, is located in Yosemite National Park. Further information about the 2015 Vintners’ Holidays can be found at www.YosemitePark.com/Vintners

Saturday, 27 June 2015 19:08

There’s More Than Just the Outdoors

John Stewart Duskie Estes PicmonkeySonoma County chefs John Stewart and Duskie Estes have fun at Chef's Holiday

TASTE News Service June 27, 2015 - Yosemite is approaching its 125th anniversary of becoming a National Park and, while justly famed for its natural beauty, the Park and surrounding area also justify a gustatory reputation. Here are some aspects that our culinary-oriented readers might enjoy:

Chef's Holidays at The Ahwahnee

Yosemite's Chefs' Holidays at The Ahwahnee, held each year in January and February, feature some of the world's most innovative and acclaimed chefs. This Northern California cooking adventure provides a showcase for the range of styles, personalities and trends that characterize the American culinary scene. Each 3-4 four day session includes an intimate Meet the Chefs reception with wine and hors d'oeuvres, behind-the-scenes kitchen tours, cooking demonstrations with tastings, all culminating in an exquisite Chefs' Holiday Gala Dinner, prepared by the visiting chefs, in The Ahwahnee Dining Room. A range of lodging packages are available, as well as dinner only options.

Mariposa Taps Liquid Gold at Area Breweries

California is fast becoming the next brewing hotspot with more than 500 microbrews, brewpubs and craft breweries already established in the state and more opening each year. While better known for Gold Rush-era history and culture, Mariposa, a town just on the western edge of Yosemite National Park, has caught the gold fever again a big way. Local breweries are gaining a following and even setting sights on regional distribution. Mariposa's first brewery, Prospector's Brewing Company, was established in 2011 and has quickly grown to two separate tasting room locations. Visitors here will find a pub crawl can be done in Mariposa's Old Town, with full tasting flights at distinctive microbreweries and brewpubs that feature a broad range of regional Northern California microbrews – all with easy walking distance of several area hotels.

Farm-to-Table: Experience the Real Food Movement

Grass-fed and sustainable isn't a new trend, our ranchers have been doing it that way for generations. While in Yosemite National Park you can enjoy Open Space Meats, grown within the same county, at both The Ahwahnee and Yosemite Lodge at the Falls. Restaurants such as 1850 and the Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort offer diners a chance to enjoy a steak that was produced just a few miles away on native grasses with plenty of sunshine. Local nonprofits such as the Sierra Foothill Conservancy work to preserve large tracts of land for traditional farming and sell the produce to support their conservation efforts. These types of programs support traditional ranching, preserve lands from development, and provide a healthy alternative to industrially-produced beef.

Bracebridge Dinner at The AhwahneeBracedbridge Dinner Picmonkey

You can celebrate the yuletide season in elegance at The Ahwahnee. Celebrated annually since 1927, the Bracebridge Dinner transforms The Ahwahnee into an 18th century English manor for a feast of food, song and mirth. The most time-honored Yosemite tradition, the Bracebridge Dinner, brings together more than 100 players to delight diners as they enjoy a meticulously prepared seven course feast. Multiple performances throughout December with lodging and dining packages available.

Editor’s Note: In the High Sierra sections of Taste California Travel’s Resource Directory, you will fill find links to the websites of many Lodging and Dining options, including the Ahwahnee.

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