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  Napa Valley     [all categories]
  Napa Valley - Wineries to Visit
  Two Best Winery Tours

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Author Topic:   Two Best Winery Tours
posted 10-08-2012 02:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for RC456     Edit/Delete Message
My two:

Chateau Montelena. Toured in 2002 or 2003. Christina was our host. Since it wound up only being the 3 of us (our 16 yo son), Christina took us everywhere! What was supposed to be 45 minutes was 2 1/2 hours! Absolutely terrific.

2nd was over in Sonoma this past May: Windsor Oak Vineyards. 2 - 3 hours (lunch is about 45 minutes of that) out in the vineyards in Brian's truck touring the 300 + planted acres. Stopping to check out the different vines and soils......most informative about growing that we have ever had. Real hands on tour.



posted 10-08-2012 10:21 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for OMRebel   Click Here to Email OMRebel     Edit/Delete Message
I will have to agree on Hall Rutherford. It was amazing and heavenly. I didn't want to leave the premises.

Okay for 2 others that we enjoyed: one was Cliff Lede. It was a fun tour. They play rock and roll music to their grapes and the wines are very good too; especially the songbook.

The second tour that was outstanding was Schramsberg. You will appreciate this tour when you see what it takes to make their sparkling wine. I took this tour because my wife likes champagne but came away from the tour with a whole new appreciation for the process of making sparkling wine. I would do this tour again. Blanc de Blancs was used for President Nixon’s 1972 “Toast to Peace” with China’s Premier Zhou Enlai. Schramsberg’s sparkling wines have been served at official State functions by every U.S. Presidential administration since.


[This message has been edited by OMRebel (edited 10-08-2012).]


posted 10-01-2012 03:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for damombo   Click Here to Email damombo     Edit/Delete Message
I'm actually having a hard time with this! You have already mentioned Chase - we have enjoyed visiting there several times. And we are looking forward to our Hall visit in a few weeks...

We've had good tours at Cakebread - from grape to bottle, seeing the vines and the barrels...
I really enjoyed our tour at Kuleto - we were walked all around the estate and the views are phenomenal, even if their wine wasn't to our liking.
The tour at the Castle was lots of fun and good info, again, even if the wine wasn't to our particular palate.

But you said two - well, actually, the best tour we had was our first, and now the place is gone. It was the Silver Rose near Calistoga. The owner/wine maker toured us around (a small group of maybe 10) and the tour ended with a seated tasting in the cave. Learned lots, got to taste from a barrel, and a charming host.

So I guess I'll go with Kuleto for the outstanding location and views and Cakebread for the education and wines.

Of course, this may change if I start to remember others - perhaps we shall open a bottle and reminisce.


posted 10-01-2012 08:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hawkeye   Click Here to Email Hawkeye     Edit/Delete Message
Since things are pretty slow right now, let's try something new. How about posting your two favorite WINE TOURS and what you liked about them. Maybe, if we can accumulate enough, it will help people when planning their trips. After a few days, I will post another topic. Here are my two favorite winery tours:

If you want amazing, 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.

This is a stop we make each visit. Jeff Blaume, winery manager, has gotten to be a good friend. Chase is one of those smaller family wineries that we like to ferret out. At places like this, you will find some incredible wines.

Your visit begins with a glass of Chase Savignon Blanc and a walk among the 100 year old Hayne Zinfandel vineyard. The vines are amazing and all gnarley. Depending on the time of year, you will be able to smell the grapes as they become mature.

Their tasting room is not fancy, but it is small and intimate. However, if the weather is nice, do your tasting outside among the vines. In addition to the SB, they make a wonderful Zinfandel and a very nice Cabernet.

These are my two, how about adding your two. Remember, this phase includes a tour.



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