Wine Country hoping to lure tourists back after North Bay Fires

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Although most wineries and tourist locations in the North Bay survived the fires that destroyed thousands of homes and killed more than 40 people, so far tourists are staying away. (KGO-TV )

Although most wineries and tourist locations in the North Bay survived the fires that destroyed thousands of homes and killed more than 40 people, so far tourists are staying away.

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Nick Perata, the owner of Perata Luxury Tours, says he's had 38 cancellations since the fires hit.

Perata tells ABC7 News that fire damage was primarily confined to the hills above Napa and the downtown area and vineyards are largely untouched. But, his half-dozen tour guides are sitting idle, and he estimates he's lost more than $30,000 in business.

At nearby Porter Vineyards, a small winery in a scenic portion of Napa Valley, the fire burned close but never got onto the property.

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Owner Tom Porter estimates that 60-percent of his crop was already harvested before the fires ignited.

"'Whites, Merlots, and Syrahs are okay," said Porter, but smoke may have damaged his Cabernet grapes. Porter won't know for a little while.

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The winery produces about 3,500 cases per year. Porter says they only got power back on Wednesday, so hosting guests wasn't an option before. But, now they want to visitors to know they are welcome and that Napa is open for business.

Watch ABC7 News at 5, 6 for the complete story, and click here to follow Eric Thomas on Twitter for the latest updates.

Click here for complete coverage of the North Bay fires.

Related Topics:
winewine industrywine stainNorth Bay Firesfirebrush fireNapa
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