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  Napa Valley     [all categories]
  Napa Valley - Wineries to Visit
  Looking back at 2011

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Author Topic:   Looking back at 2011
bigsemi
Member
posted 12-20-2011 07:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for bigsemi   Click Here to Email bigsemi     Edit/Delete Message
Tour:
Reverie. Great wine. The Redwood Grove was way cool. Lots of great conversation. So good we did it twice!!

Tasting Room:
Tie: Summers, was a first stop in April with 3 friends and family that had never been to Napa before, we spent a raucous hour and half tasting yummy wine and laughing our butts off.

Zahtila, the wife and I had a great experience with the Zahtila's, as I know many of the rest of you have too.

Couple other great experiences:

Lunch at V. Sattui with Winery President, Wine Maker, and Vineyard Manager, what an awesome lunch!!

Sunset on the Porch at Round Pond. A great way to kickoff a Friday night.

IP: 108.214.36.208

carjeff
Member
posted 11-27-2011 05:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for carjeff   Click Here to Email carjeff     Edit/Delete Message
Tour: Flora Springs. We took their Estate tour and it was great. We spent 3+ hours touring the winery and tasting great wines. We tasted the differences oak and length of maceration have on wine. The host, Jason, kept asking us and the other 2 couples what other wine he should open, including a few outstanding single vineyard cabs. The winery also offered great views of the valley. Schweiger would be a close second, with gorgeous views, and excellent wines.

Tasting at a winery: A tie between Black Cat and Goosecross. Black Cat is a very small winery, producing about 1000 cases of cab, syrah, and a cab/syrah blend. We spent about 2 hours tasting these wines, and chatting with the owner Tracey.

We have been club members at Goosecross for several years. We spent about 2 hours at Goosecross tasting and visiting with Colleen, one of the owners.

Tasting Room: The only one we went to was Long Meadow Ranch, but we weren't that impressed with the wines.

IP: 108.25.22.175

Hawkeye
Member
posted 11-27-2011 07:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hawkeye   Click Here to Email Hawkeye     Edit/Delete Message
Hi Kod,

If you are taking friends, two I would recommend on the list are Black Sears and Outpost up on Howell Mountain. Take a picnic to Outpost, incredible views.

-Hawkeye

IP: 68.169.184.155

Kod
Member
posted 11-27-2011 05:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kod     Edit/Delete Message
Thanks. Next trip we are going with some friends who will want to visit some of these wineries. I did try Chiarello's Zin at Bottega- very nice but the restaurant terrible.

IP: 68.45.99.199

Hawkeye
Member
posted 11-27-2011 05:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hawkeye   Click Here to Email Hawkeye     Edit/Delete Message
Hi Kod,

I did some research and found the following attributed to Thomas River Brown:
Black Sears, Outpost, Schrader, Maybach, River-Marie (his own label), Diamond Terrace, Jones, Harris, Dehlinger, Jaffers, Robert Foley, Seaver (Tom the pitcher) Tamber Rey, Chiarello, Nicholson Ranch, Bisou and Heston (beginning with the 09 vintage).

If you will call Diamond Terrace, the owner Maureen Taylor has released her 08 Diamond Mountain Cab and has put a price of $45 on it. We tasted it recently and it was outstanding. However, they are going out of the winemaking business and will focus on growing and selling their grapes . . . told me they wanted more freedom. A TRB wine.

Hope this helps.

-Hawkeye

[This message has been edited by Hawkeye (edited 11-27-2011).]

IP: 68.169.184.155

Kod
Member
posted 11-26-2011 01:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kod     Edit/Delete Message
could you list the wineries that have Brown as their winemaker. I have a couple great places around here that may carry some of them.

IP: 68.45.99.199

Kod
Member
posted 11-25-2011 06:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kod     Edit/Delete Message
Tour: White Rocks for the private tour and information with very nice wines. But really tied with Amitezza for another private tour and barrel tasting with it's young winemaker. The winery sits on the very top of a mountain overlooking Hennessy Lake and the views are spectacular. But I did not like the wine.

Tasting: Vincent Arroyo. I enjoyed and bought many of their wines and they had quite a few to taste. There were lots of 2nd places.

Tasting Room: I did not have a great experience at any of them. UpValley Vintners the most friendly but Vintners Collective, while not friendly this time, has numerous artisan wines of high quality, including Rich Perry, Longfellow, and Ancien.

IP: 68.45.99.199

Hawkeye
Member
posted 11-25-2011 04:49 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hawkeye   Click Here to Email Hawkeye     Edit/Delete Message
Even though 2011 still has one month to go, I believe that most trips to Napa Valley are over for the year. Therefor, I would like to ask three questions; 1. What was your favorite winery tour in 2011? and 2. What was your one favorite tasting at a winery? and 3. What was your one favorite tasting at a tasting room?

Here are mine:

1 Tour: This would be a simple choice for me. Here is what I have written previously about Hall Rutherford. I do not believe they apply the tasting fee to purchases.

"If you want amazing and romantic, you must visit Hall Rutherford. They also have a place in St. Helena, but you want to climb up to the top of Rutherford Hill and visit the cave. By appointment only.

You will travel up Rutherford Hill until you think you are on the top of the world . . . you wonder if you will ever get there . . . then, all of a sudden, you come over the crest of the hill and there it sits. You are greeted with a glass of Chardonnay in a small building that house some of the Hall's fabulous art collection. The Halls love art.

The views of the Napa Valley from that height are incredible. If that were not enough, you are then led down to the caves and the working winery. At the end of the cave was a dinning room with the most beautiful grape vine chandelier one could imagine. The roots of the vine contained the little lights and the Swarovski crystals that provide the light and glitter.

Here you will taste their higher end wines which include some incredible Cabs. A little expensive, but definitely worth it.

2. This was a tough one because there are so many to choose from. I have eliminated all that give you a tour with your tasting so that helps cut it down. OK, I have decided! It would be Midsummer Cellars with owner and winemaker, Rollie Heitz. Rollie is a down to earth, pleasant, always smiling host. If the weather is nice, you will sit around a table outside the winery building and taste his wines. If you ask questions about about his wines, he will answer, however, his wines mainly speak for themselves, and they do that. Another reason I chose Midsummer was because of the quality of the wines, but also the price point. No bottle over $40.00 and they will go head to head with many Cabs at double the price.

3. Tasting Room. Hands down, the SALON at St. Helena featuring Harris and Jones wines. The wines for these two wineries are crafted by Thomas Rivers Brown, and what luscious Cabs they were. The price point of these wines was from average to high end but they blew me away. The tasting fee is a little high at $35.00, and if I hadn't been familiar with the Harris wines, I would never have paid it. However, since I had purchased Harris wines previously from their website, the fee was waived.

These are my selections ending the year 2011, what are yours?

-Hawkeye

[This message has been edited by Hawkeye (edited 11-25-2011).]

IP: 68.169.184.155

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