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Aug 11, 2009 04:20 PM

Napa Recommendations

My husband and I are taking our first trip to Napa Aug. 26-30. We have tastings scheduled at Schramsberg and are planning on visiting Robert Sinskey. We are in desperate need of relaxation, so are trying to schedule as little as possible, and what we schedule we want to be good. Oddly, we don't drink a lot of cabs, but instead opt for old world wines. That being said, in general we just love a good bottle of wine, so a great cab tasting: "hell's yeah!" What are your favorite vineyards for wine, the best ones for architecture, and the best overall experience? (I do, of course, understand that often these things might be in opposition). Oh yeah, if there is a vineyard with a stunning food/wine tour that anyone can recommend we would be much obliged.


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  1. Like Dalioush for Persian architecture and the wines; also Coppola in the old Inglenook space is also a lovely space.

    1. Sinskey is wonderful, beautiful wines, great tasting. Head just a little bit further north on the Silverado Trail and hit Cliff Lede, it's at the Trail an the Yountville crossroad. A stunning winery with outstanding wines, great people and a beautiful patio to relax on while tasting their wines. They do mostly reds that are outstanding but also have one of the best sauv. blancs in the valley. It's been one of out favorites for many years.


      1. Jarvis is entirely in a cave and their wines are high quality. The tour/tasting is a little pricey but we highly recommend it.

        Chateau Montelena is a beautiful site and their wine is classic Napa quality.

        I still think the educational tour at Mondavi is one of the best in the valley.

        I'll second Schramsberg, Cliff Lede and Sinskey as well.

        1. Your two appointments so far are great and ditto the recs for Cliff Lede and Montelena.

          Also recommend:

          - Shafer (great view, more formal)
          - Lewelling (very relaxing, taste in the vineyard)
          - Alpha Omega (killer, Bordeaux style wines)
          - Larkmead (great wines, people)

          1. Napa has all the fame and glory, but if you ever
            consider making a second trip, I would suggest
            visiting Sonoma Valley, which is much larger than Napa
            and has a greater diversity of wine varieties. If you
            go along Westside Road along the Russian River
            yoou will find great Pinot noirs. Alexander Valley
            has great cabs and zins. Dry Creek has great zins
            and fine Italian varietals. Downtown Healdsburg
            has also a wide range of tasting rooms (Rosenblum,
            Selby, etc..) and decent restaurants.