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Wine Tasting Fees: A Necessary Evil

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  Wine tasting fees.  How much are they and why do I pay them? We recently returned from an incredible wine country adventure that took place in Sonoma and Napa, California over three full days.  While we were there, our wine-loving group of six had the opportunity to visit nine wineries.  Wait, that's not right.  We added a tenth winery, but it was literally for just a glass of wine as they couldn't squeeze us in for a tasting. Prior to the trip, we had combed over our options, created a whiteboard and mapped out best practices based on location, time of day and whether or not we had any "must see" properties.  It turns out that we did.  So much has changed since the last time we were in Napa ... including the wine tasting fees!  Don't get me wrong.  We weren't blindsided and we had our eyes wide open when creating our plans.  Most of the wineries we were visiting were what we would classify as very special places.  These weren't the 5,000,000 cases of bo