Exclusive Wine Cruise

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Hosted by Earl & Hilda Jones, Abacela Vineyards and Winery Roseburg, Oregon

About Earl Jones, Owner and General Manager of Abacela Vineyards and WineryIt started with a chance encounter – a bottle of Pouilley-Fuissé – and resulted in founding the first award winning Spanish varietal winery in America. As a research physician-immunologist, Earl put his research skills to work and after three years landed in the oak savannahs of Southern Oregon’s Umpqua Valley. The vineyards and winery were established in 1994/1995 and by 1998, self-taught winemaker Earl produced America’s first internationally acclaimed tempranillo wine. Tempranillo’s success led to further trials of old world wine, and Albariño and other novel wines have joined the offering.

About Hilda Jones, Vice President of Abacela Vineyards and Winery While Earl’s dream was to make great wine, Hilda’s was to live on a farm. She left a career in medical technology to help Earl follow the dream that became Abacela Winery. Early years found Hilda working every job in the vineyard and winery, including managing the tasting room. When Hilda and Earl decided to build a new tasting room in 2010, “It was our goal to make each guest’s visit an experiential one.”
Both Earl and Hilda are active in the Southern Oregon Winery Association, the Oregon Wine Board, and other wine trade associations.

Expertly Curated WINE EXPERIENCES

Immerse yourself in the many flavors of Europe on one of AmaWaterways unique Wine Cruises, which let you add a unique, epicurean dimension to one of our European itineraries. Like our standard river cruises, guests have the opportunity to join tours that highlight the famous sights in each port of call. These special itineraries, however, offer guests a perfect blend of wine-related experiences and excursions in grand capitals and charming towns. You’ll taste local cuisine, discover how wine is made and, of course, partake in tastings — all at no additional cost. Whether you have a seasoned appreciation for fine wine, or simply indulge in a sip here and there, this is a wonderful way to uncork the traditions of the local culture and learn about the region you’re visiting.

About the Wine Region – The Lower Danube

From the grand architecture of Budapest to the mystical “Iron Gates” to the spirit of Dracula, the lower Danube is filled with intrigue. Our Gems of Southeast Europe itinerary journeys through Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania, where you can taste the diversity of five countries’ age-old winemaking traditions. Southeast of the Riesling-rich Wachau Valley, the lower Danube wine regions offer a rich variety. The Szekszárd wine region is one of the oldest red wine growing areas in Hungary, established more than 2,000 years ago. Known for producing Kadarka grapes, most notably used in the blend known as Bikavér (Bull’s Blood), the region also produces many full-bodied and spicy reds like Cabernet Sauvignon, Kékfrankos and Merlot. In Serbia, a fruity plum brandy known as Šlivovitz is the drink of choice, a fitting addition to warm cocktails, while in Croatia, the town of Ilok has a winegrowing history dating back to Roman times, where cellars mature such varietals as Traminac, Riesling, Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay.

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