The Renowned Napa Valley is Home to Some Stellar Vino
Written by: Tyler Holland 10 Outrageously Delicious Bay Area Wineries
Californians are no strangers to bright, sunny days and perfect temperatures year round, and it’s these same conditions that make this state one of the greatest wine-producing regions in the world. With an abundance of wineries taking advantage of this fact, it can be hard to decide which one to visit and even more so if you only have a limited time to spend in wine country. We’ve compiled a list of some of the best of the best the San Francisco Bay Area has to offer, making the decision a little easier. No matter the variety of wine or style of venue, the Bay Area has something that suits everyone’s desires. Bay Area Wineries
Vintner’s Collective is a Napa Valley tasting room showcasing 16 celebrated boutique winemakers who have limited productions of under 1, 000 cases. Don’t let the limited stock fool you, these winemakers dedicate themselves to producing the highest quality wines and all are available for your tasting pleasure. Whether you’re looking for a Pinot Noir or Chardonnay, there are more than enough options to choose from. The site even provides aging potential and tasting notes, ensuring you go home with the perfect fit for your refined taste. Consider yourself a serious collector? Vintner’s Collective also has several clubs, including the Madame, which includes the most sought after and exclusive wines created by some of Napa Valley’s most well-known winemakers.
1245 Main St
Napa, CA 94559
Quixote Winery is a beautifully designed venue created by Viennese painter and architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser and is the only structure designed by him in the United States. The design blends in seamlessly with the surrounding landscape that makes Napa so famous, besides the exceptional wine that is. The landscaping also takes the surrounding environment into consideration with a reservoir that provides water for the vineyards even in times of drought. Under the “Quixote” label, the winery produces Petite Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon from its organic estate vineyards that stretch over 27 acres through Napa’s Stag’s Leap District. Have a craving for more wine from one of the world’s great growing districts? The Quixote Club has several options, from clubs that offer three bottles to 12 bottles annually.
6126 Silverado Trail
Napa, CA 94558
Officially opening to the public in 2007, Castello di Amorosa is situated on 171 acres in the picturesque hills of Napa Valley. With over 136, 000 square feet of space, this is the only Medieval Tuscan Style castle and winery in America. 90 of the 107 rooms are devoted to winemaking and storage and additional rooms include a chapel, courtyard and terrace. Visitors can tour the castle and winery before enjoying a tasting of Castello di Amorosa’s award winning wines in the Royal Apartment. Signature wines sampled in this tasting include La Castellana. For those who can’t imagine wine without a good piece of cheese accompanying it, there is also a cheese and wine pairing tour that meets in the Passito Room.
4045 St Helena Hwy
Calistoga, CA 94515
Just north of the town of Calistoga, Envy Wines began its life as a bed and breakfast that quickly grew in popularity, leading to the addition of a hotel and the highly regarded Restaurant 301. A Wine Spectator Grand Award winning wine list was also put together for the enjoyment of the guests, made up of some of the best wines from well-known regions such as Boudreaux to lesser known areas, creating a memorable collection. Eventually, a permanent home was needed for the selection and in 2006, Envy Winery was founded on 17 acres of land in Napa. Estate grown Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are some of the specialties this winery has to offer. The philosophy here is that wines must reflect the best qualities the varietal has to offer. To taste the best of what the world has to offer, several clubs are available that send out shipments of six to 12 bottles twice a year, ensuring your wine cravings are continuously satisfied.
1170 Tubbs Ln
Calistoga, CA 94515
Placed on the National Register of Historic Places, Ma(i)sonry was originally built in 1904 as a private residence for Charles Rovegno. Roughly 20 years after Rovegno’s passing in 1954, the residence was converted into a seven-room inn that ran until 2007. Today, the property functions an art and wine tasting gallery showcasing rotating collections of limited production wines and world class art from all ranges and styles. Wines come from the Blackbird Vineyards as well as over 14 other family owned wineries. Gallery tours and private events are offered, and you can even book your wedding here.
6711 Washington St
Yountville, CA 94599
Established in 1977, Newton Vineyard was one of the first wineries on Spring Mountain between the Napa and Sonoma valleys. Newton meticulously crafts their wines using sustainable methods including avoiding filtration during the bottling process and picking grapes in small batches. This old world style of winemaking may be time-consuming, but the end result is worth it. Famed American wine writer Robert Parker would agree, calling Newton Vineyard one of the world’s greatest wine estates and giving their unfiltered chardonnay 96 out of 100 points. Enjoy their vast selection of wines while admiring the 120 acres of formal English gardens and rolling hills surrounding the property.
2555 Madrona Ave
Saint Helena, CA 94574
Chappellet is located on the east side of Napa Valley in a central part in the hills east of Rutherford. The elevation of the winery starts around 1, 000 feet and rises to 1, 800 feet, making it ideally suited towards growing Cabernet. It is high enough for the cooling effect to take place, creating cooler peak temps and warmer nights which works well for the Cabernet. Be sure to try their Cabernet Sauvignon and Chenin Blanc, which are a few of the wines featured on the tours offered to the public. For the Napa Valley region, Chappellet is a historic location, as it was the second winery to be built after prohibition, but that does not mean the design of the grounds is not modern or cutting edge. The beautiful and architecturally unique grounds contain avant-garde buildings, including a three-sided pyramid – making this a unique location in a region filled with wineries that mimic old world-styled estates.
1581 Sage Canyon Rd
St. Helena, CA 94574
Located in the Oak Knoll district, which has gained the reputation of being a region that produces elegant and complex wines, Black Stallion Winery stands on the grounds of a historic equestrian center. What remains of the horse stalls is still visible and what was once the indoor track has been repurposed for winemaking production. Each of the wines produced is handcrafted, creating batches of the highest quality. Being handcrafted ensures the true nature and characteristics of the grapes are emphasized. You are tasting the grape the way it was meant to be tasted. Black Stallion features a variety of wines including red wines, a dessert wine and Rose.
4089 Silverado Trail
Napa, CA 94558
Corison Winery specializes in handcrafted Cabernet Sauvignons made from some of the finest vineyards the Napa region has to offer. Thanks to the conditions of the soil where the winery is situated, Corison is able to produce consistent and balanced wines that place it amongst the top cabernet producers in the area. Each wine only gets more exquisite and complex with age, perfect for those out there who prefer to stock up for those special occasions. Collectors are invited to join one of the wine clubs that sends out 12 to 24 750ml bottles or six to 12 magnums per year, and those who join receive complimentary tours and tastings, invitations to members-only events and discounts on wine purchases. The goal at Corison has always been to let the wine speak for itself, and it shows.
987 St. Helena Hwy
St. Helena, CA 94574
With a history spanning 100 years, Beaulieu Vineyard has become an established part of the Napa Valley landscape and was even one of the few wineries nationwide allowed to run during prohibition thanks to a contract that gave it the ability to supply wine to churches for sacramental purposes. Today, Beaulieu continues to produce exceptional wines and has been ranked as one of Food & Wine magazine’s “Best Napa Valley Wineries to Visit.” Award-winning wines include the 2012 Georges de Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and the 2009 Beaulieu Vineyard Reserve Tapestry. To continuously experience the best of what this winery has to offer, clubs are available at four levels with shipments ranging from quarterly to bi-monthly.
1960 St. Helena Hwy
Rutherford, CA 94558