I began my Adventures in Wine tasting in 1997 in San Diego and Temecula California. Within a couple years I was making trips up the California coast through Santa Barbara, Paso Robles, Monterey, the Santa Cruz Mountains, Livermore, and of course Napa and Sonoma.
Then I moved back to where I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area at which time II also began exploring Lodi and the Sierra Foothills (from Amador to Sonora).
The most helpful thing in my exploration of these wine regions has been the free local wine magazines. If you are travelling to any of these regions you can usually pick up one or more of these free magazines that offer free maps, articles on the local wineries, restaurant recommendations. They can be easily found at either the wineries or at the local Tourism & Information Center. It is also helpful to check out the wine region’s web sites (see the links in the left hand margin) and plan your trip in advance.
Another helpful guide for many years has been The Wine Spectator. This well written magazine has great photography and will give you a picturesque look at regions around the world you may never have the opportunity to visit. If you really want to explore wine, then I highly recommend that you get a subscription to this periodical as your Bible to making the best of your Adventures in Wine tasting.