Deciphering the mysteries of wine involves sniffing subtle aromas, swishing sips around the tongue for flavor hints, and reading the sediment left at the bottom of the glass for a personalized greeting from Bacchus. Unlock divine codes of the vine with today’s Groupon: for $20, you get a wine tasting for one plus one bottle of wine (a $50 value) at Cycles Gladiator Visitors Center, located in Lodi.
Cycles Gladiator's wine tastings pair the complex flavors and seductive aromas of grape-driven wines from California’s coastal vineyards in Monterey County. Sippers sample from a selection of more than 20 varieties of wine, with a selected batch of 12 bottles open at any given time. Like the 007s of the James Bond universe, wines at the tasting vary, although velvety libations in the past have included offerings from Wet whistles and tongue flutes with vintages ranging from light sauvignon blancs and smooth petite sirahs to full-bodied merlots and pinot noirs from boutique family wineries including Cycles Gladiator, Copa del Rey, Huntington, and Homage. Connoisseurs can compare taste notes while unfurling a blanket in the surrounding picnic area or balance tipples while playing bocce on one of two lawn courts.
Inspired by the classic French bicycle poster bearing its name, Cycles peppers its recently renovated, historic tasting room with bike apparel and gifts. Tasting guests take home keepsakes including a Cycles Gladiator hat, corkscrew, and poster alongside one bottle of wine with which to challenge a neighbor to a cork-firing duel.