Napa County Wine

There is some debate over how this famous wine region got its name. Spanish settlers named the Native American tribe that originally inhabited the area “Wappo,” and some say this is a derivation of “guapo” meaning “handsome,” while others say it means “brave,” with Napa being a further spin-off. Another legend is that Napa is a Wappo word for the land itself. Regardless, with its Mediterranean climate and diverse terroirs, this land eventually became one of the most important wine regions in the world. 

 
The first vineyards in Napa were planted in 1836 by George Calvert Yount in what is now the town of Yountville. In the 1850s, Thomas Rutherford, who married Yount’s granddaughter, Elizabeth Yount, established the first vineyard in what would become Rutherford town. The first commercial winery was established by Charles Krug in the 1860s. Soon, the likes of Inglenook, Beringer and Schramsberg and many others set up their wineries and Read more »

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Popular wines made in Napa County under $20

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Varietals Produced in Napa County View all

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

  • Zinfandel

    Parentage of the grape: Crljenak to Austria to America. In the 1970s, claims surfaced that the Italian Primitivo is l...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Sauvignon Blanc

    Sauvignon Blanc is widely grown in California -- at over 15,000 acres, it’s now the third most planted variety -- and...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

Subregions of Napa County

  • Oakville

    Well if any AVA vies with Rutherford for the crown of King of Cabernet it would have to Oakville....

  • Atlas Peak

    The climate of this appellation is unique, partly because its elevation frees it from the fog whi...

Popular Wineries in Napa County View all

  • Franciscan Oakville Estate

    Franciscan has its roots deeply embedded in the soil of Napa Valley. Founded over three decade...

  • MX Wines

    MX Wines is based in Napa Valley, California, and hand-crafts miniscule quantities of Cabernet Sa...

  • Kelham Vineyards & Winery

    Kelham Vineyards wines reflect the unique character of the soils and localized climate which has ...

  • Gargiulo Vineyards

    A lifetime farmer, Jeff Gargiulo founded Gargiulo Vineyards in 1992 with a dream of making "true"...

  • VinRoc Wine Caves

    VINROC derives its name from our rock strewn mountain vineyard, where the elevation provides the ...

  • Rudd Estate

    In 1996, food and wine entrepreneur Leslie Rudd realized his 30-year dream of owning a winery in ...

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Napa County on Snooth

  • Paradigm Merlot 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Heidi Barrett Peterson created a great Merlot from Oakville here.The 2011 is still quite young; but during the course of the dinner opened up after an hour with a Captains' Decanter and seasoned glassware. The wine was Bright, Clear and NO Sediment. Long and Complex.. Read More

    Wine review by William Djubin


  • Peggy and I celebrated our anniversary, this week, up in Cambria.  Other than the fact that they, like all of Southern California, experienced record setting high temperatures, this week, and air conditioning is, pretty much unknown in Cabria (Why would they have it?), it was a great visit.  One day we drove over to nearby Paso Robles and visite... Read More

    Forum post in the topic What have you bought lately?


  • Rock Wall Wine Company le Mur de Roche Petite Sirah Napa 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Hot and intoxicating aromas of black cherry and molasses on the nose. Dark black cherry and blackberry fruit enveloping the palate in waves, surprisingly tight and focused despite the depth of fruit. This finishes with an explosive final push of black currant preserves, oak and butter, sharp acidity and tannins with a long streak of dark chocola... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Dancing Hares Mad Hatter Napa Valley 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Perfumed violets and milk chocolate aromas with creamy vanilla and blackberry notes and a hint of something savory underneath. Surprisingly delicate on entry but releasing a forceful wave of blackberry and black currant fruit, full acidity, blueberry, dried figs and striped tannins towards the finish with melted lava cake and espresso adding som... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Tank Garage Nothing Gold Can Stay Chardonnay Napa 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Light gold color, oaty notes of toast, creamy oak and Meyer lemon are very buttery. In the mouth this is initially fresh and lively, welling up with buttery vanilla notes on the mid palate, green apple and lemon fruit taking a back seat towards the finish to more oak, tart acidity and a creamy finish. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Sterling Vineyards Chardonnay Napa 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Creamy vanilla tinged aromas of peach, lemon and green apple. Full mouthfeel of fruit with an oaky well integrated butter and cream note and a finish of light lemon. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Yardstick Cabernet Sauvignon Ruth's Reach Napa Valley Goldschmidt 2007

    Snoothrank:

    E had at Petersons. Read More

    Wine review by gmb468


  • The 2013-2014 Avalon Cabernet from Napa County has been a midweek QPR for the past 2 years. On sale I can get it in the $13-$14 range. The regular price is usually $15-$16. Blackberry/Black Cherry, a hint of mocha, some tartness/acidity in the mid-palate. Medium body with a smooth rather short finish. A really good young drinker that does not br... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Value Wines - under $20 USD...


  • Looking merely at wine, was wondering how the current hodge-podge of Trump policy initiatives may affect the beverage we like so much. A couple of early guesses:USDA budget cuts will mean California's Wine Institute budget will likely be cut by 1/3 (Wine Industry Insight's figure). Will quite possibly see fewer facts about harvests, and other us... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Current thoughts on our...


  • The '15 Bedrock is a little wound up. A year orbtwo owuld surely help.I dropped off some Becklyn Cab Sauv at ACME the other day and douldn't leave empty handed. Ended up with a 6er.3x 2016 Gather Rosé of Tempranillo Amador County 1x 2014 Hirsch Vineyards San Andreas Fault Pinot Noir (reload)2x 2015 Son of a Butcher Napa Valley RedThen it was off... Read More

    Forum post in the topic What have you bought lately?


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