Napa 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 Read more »

Mentor for Napa Wines

Craig Donofrio

Craig Donofrio is an Advanced Sommelier in the Court of Master Sommeliers and has worked and consulted for some of the nation's top restaurants. He is chief food/wine photographer at Grapevine Studios (www.grapevinestudios.blogspot.com).

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Popular wines made in Napa under $20

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Varietals Produced in Napa View all

  • Merlot

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

  • 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...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Zinfandel

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

Subregions of Napa

  • Carneros

    Los Carneros- The first AVA one comes to as one splits off the Napa Vallejo Highway and takes rou...

  • Stags Leap District

      Stags Leap District is located on the famous Silverado Trail of the Napa Valley region in ...

  • Yountville

    To the south of Oakville and comprised virtually entirely of valley floor land, Yountville is the...

Popular Wineries in Napa View all

  • Bond

    BOND: A stable of Napa Valley thoroughbreds — ultimately six Cabernet-based wines — assembled und...

  • CrauforD Wine Co.

    Crauford Wine Company was founded in 2000 by Marilyn Crawford Corley, whose family originated in ...

  • Screaming Eagle Winery

      Screaming Eagle is a small winery based in Oakville, California. . The 1992 vintage garner...

  • Eagle's Trace

    All great wines have a sense of place. The French call it terroir - the site, the soil and the cl...

  • Irony

    Most of us didn't imagine where we would be right now. Sure, we dreamed of being firemen, astrona...

  • Joseph Carr

    Joseph Carr wines are produced at Larson Family Vineyards in Carneros, bordering both Napa and So...

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Napa on Snooth

  • Today I attended one of my favorite tastings of the year, the Taste Napa Valley tour, where I tasted no lessthan 65 great to wonderful wines, mostly King Cabernet himself. I have listed the high lights of the day here. More will follow. 2005 Cornerstone Cabernet Sauvignon Napa- Gorgeous fruit forward with a lush mouth feel. Dense currant with...

    Comment by 125081Mike Pobega 125081 Mike Pobega


  • St. Supery Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Nice unsweetened dark fruit on entry. Lots of earthiness. Lots of oaky factors. Stiff tannins suggested that patient aging will be beneficial. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Myriad Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Nose of dark fruit and, maybe, prune. Typical CS currant on the tip of the tongue. Some dustiness. Sturdy tannins. I was eager to open this one up. I may have been over eager. My remaining bottles will remain sideways for quite some time. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Turley Bedrock Zinfandel 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Just slightly short on the finish....but really spicy and beautifully aromatic....will drink it again! Read More

    Wine review by amour


  • D - it's a whole other topic how those wines have evolved, changed, etc. I ... I ... cheaper than a lot of Napa wines, but not cheap.So people expecting to pay less than $20 are going to be really disappointed. Although you can get for $40 what would cost double that from CA, who pays that much in the U Read More

    Forum post in the topic Viognier Virgin


  • I must mention the joys of Rutherford Vintners Pinot Noir, Napa!I JUST DRANK 2012 AND IT IS WONDERFUL INDEED!   It was a very good year!  Check out RUTERFORD VINTNERS, here on SNOOTH. Read More

    Forum post in the topic Searching for a Resonable...


  • Lagier Meredith Syrah Mt. Veeder 2010

    Snoothrank:

    Quite dark purple in the glass. Slightly floral nose, but, really, more dark fruit. Nice hit of tart dark fruit on entry. Not particularly big tannins as the wine passes back, but slightly bitter puckeriness is noticed. Im a bit surprised that the tartness noticed on the tip of the tongue seems to diminish quickly as the wine passes back. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • I'll flip the photo for you. Looks like you have some zins (Dashe Dry Creek ... Creek Valley, Quivira), one Napa cab (Linnaea), some PNs (La Crema Monterey and a couple of Byrons), and  a hat trick of Bonny Doon offerings. Can we assume you haven't had these, but they are potentially within your price range? And that these are not meant to fit ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Need Help


  • I am more often drawn to Bordeaux-style wines, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon ... ... VA, and to some of the Napa Valley Cabs, such as Barnett Vineyards or Duckhorn Vineyard Read More

    Forum post in the topic Kindly name one of your...


  • Due my cold these are late entries - The Merlot night party went well a couple ... ... The Markham represented Napa well, a little tannic yet and it needed 45 mins. of decanting, but good fruit.  The 2012 L'Ecole was the WOTN - wonderful overall, it benefited from laying down as the fruit melded with the balanced tannic/acidic framing well.  ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines - Post Pictures...


  • "Keep him out of the Napa and Sonoma Valleys plus Oregon"Washington, too. Shall we let him have Virginia, Al?  ;-)  A farce, yes, RCKR, and the people of NYC are well familiar with that aspect of the Trump experience (and guess how well he did at the polls there). However at this new level for him, where trial-and-error experiments are so costly... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine Pairing with 08 Nov 2016...


  • Every time I visit Napa I have a great time. Make sure you plan ahead though. The options can be overwhelming!

    Comment by 321328cablecars 321328 cablecars


  • Recently had a Darioush Duel Cabernet/Shiraz blend 2005 I bought it at the vineyard and it was wonderful Mmmmm

    Comment by 250806Grape Goddess 250806 Grape Goddess


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