Manton Wineries Provide Tourists and Locals a Much Needed Altitude Adjustment

26 Jan

Nestled in the foothills of Lassen Volcanic National Park lies the historic town of Manton and Tehama County’s scenic wine country. The estate vineyards of the Manton area rival those of the Napa and Sonoma valleys, yet are still relatively undiscovered by both locals and tourists. That will soon change if efforts by community and business leaders to promote tourism in Tehama County are successful. 

“Wine tasting isn’t the only reason to visit Manton,” said Nelse Weare, a resident of Tehama who had heard a great deal about the wineries and decided to check them out. While it was Weare’s first wine tasting tour of the area, he has spent a great deal of time exploring the countryside while staying at a cabin he owns in Mineral.  Those working to promote the Manton wine country agree with Weare, and preliminary marketing concepts developed by Roger Brooks and his company Destination Development International incorporate the attributes inherent to the cascade mountain region. 

Manton is a popular destination for those who enjoy outdoor activities with year round beauty, fishing and hiking opportunities, and events such as the Annual Apple Festival.  Streams fed by melting snow provide inspiration for fly fishing.  Several area ranches provide lodging as well as opportunities for outdoor exploration. 

 “Manton is rich in ranching history, including some wonderful love stories,” said Weare, who has a penchant for local folklore. The Bailey Creek Lodge on Twin Creek Ranch, Bar Z Ranch Bed and Breakfast, Digger Creek Ranch Lodge certainly provide the ambiance for a romantic getaway on acres of pristine ranch land with an abundance of wildlife, lakes full of rainbow trout, and hiking trails. 

“The lodges provide wonderful accommodations for wine-tasting excursions,” said Donna Delgado, who operates u2vine, a popular wine tour service specializing in the Manton area. Delgado, who is a local resident and co-proprietor of Ringtail Vineyards, has extensive knowledge of local estate wineries and the history of the area. Passionate about wine, she offers intimate and informative wine-tasting tours for up to six people. “Each winery in Manton has its own character and ambiance,” she noted.  Indian Peak, Ringtail, Shasta Daisy, Cedar Crest, Mount Tehama, and Alger Vineyards all produce award-winning vintages that are helping to establish the area’s reputation as a must-visit, wine-tasting destination. 

Delgado’s partner at Ringtail Vineyard, Robert Carrillo is a fourth generation wine maker.  Carrillo planted his Manton Valley vineyard in the late 90’s after realizing that the region contained a unique soil for producing superior wine grapes.  

Indian Peak Vineyard owner, Fred Boots also praises Manton Valley’s red volcanic soil and optimal growing weather conditions for producing high quality wine grapes. “When we started our winery we knew we needed three things to be successful: Exceptional grapes, superior wines, and people to buy our wine, said Boots, “We have the grapes and the wine, and we are hoping the Tehama County Branding Project will help us attract more buyers through tourism.” 

Funded by individuals and businesses, the Tehama County Branding Project is an ambitious effort to promote tourism and put more cash into the local economy. Money rose through contributions and fundraisers made it possible to retain Destination Development International to develop a marketing focus that distinguishes Manton from other wine producing regions. 

 “Very, very few wineries are set among forests, particularly in a mountain setting. This makes this wine area truly unique from others,” said Brooks, whose company has helped thousands of places around the world over the past 30 years become more desirable for investment, tourism, and living.  

Preliminary branding concepts promote the experience of wine tasting in the mountains. The proposed marketing campaign centered on the “Adjust Your Altitude” brand, appeals to those who love outdoor activities, and evokes emotion by enabling potential visitors to envision tasting superb wines made from grapes grown in rich volcanic soil in a mountainous setting.  Both Fred and Delgado applaud the preliminary brand concepts and love the advertising mockups. “The campaign captures the attitude and culture of the tourists we hope to attract,” said Fred.   “The entire region will benefit from the branding project,” agrees Delgado.

 Manton is only a 30-minute drive from Red Bluff, which makes it a convenient destination for both tourists and Tehama County residents. “It was well worth the drive,” said Weare, who purchased vintages from each of the wineries he visited.

 Press Release by: Kristin Behrens

Tehama County Branding Project at Large Committee

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