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...

  • Zinfandel

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

  • Syrah

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

  • 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...

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

  • Rockledge Vineyards

    High on the eastern slopes of Napa Valley just south of the town of St. Helena is a saddle covere...

  • William Hill Winery

    William Hill Estate Winery carries forward a 30-year philosophy of crafting elegant Napa Valley w...

  • Stonehedge Winery

    In 1992, the Shahabi Brothers began producing wines in the small town of St. Helena, situated in ...

  • Scarecrow

    T H E S C A R E C R O W S T O R Y The Scarecrow story begins in a patch of earth with a fabled p...

  • Jessup Cellars

    Owners Dan and Becky Blue, Roy and Cheri Eisiminger and Vance and Jana Thompson are proud to pres...

  • Screaming Eagle Winery

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

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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


  • Robert Keenan Winery Syrah Napa Valley 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Something of a viney nose, a bit of black fruit aroma. On the tongue this initially seems to be a very austere winesome blackberry and black plum flavor, fairly tart, and not mouth-filling. Little or no tannin puckeriness. Quite surprising for a Spring Mountain red wine. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Rombauer Zinfandel California 2012

    Snoothrank:

    This wine is the reason I joined Snooth. It is my favorite wine, by far. It is rich, decadent, and reasonably priced for a wine of such high quality. It is the only wine that I purchase by the case. I love it that much. Read More

    Wine review by ChuckBabs


  • Rombauer Zinfandel California 2013

    Snoothrank:

    This wine is the reason I joined Snooth. It is my favorite wine, by far. It is rich, decadent, and reasonably priced for a wine of such high quality. It is the only wine that I purchase by the case. I love it that much. Read More

    Wine review by ChuckBabs


  • Rombauer Vineyards Zinfandel California 2005

    Snoothrank:

    This wine is the reason I joined Snooth. It is my favorite wine, by far. It is rich, decadent, and reasonably priced for a wine of such high quality. It is the only wine that I purchase by the case. I love it that much. Read More

    Wine review by ChuckBabs


  • I'm not a wine taster.  I'm a wine drinker.  I've been ... buying by the case: Rombauer Napa Valley Zinfandel (15.9% alcohol).     &nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Fruit Bomb Fan


  • Atalon Pauline's Cuvee Napa Valley 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Black cherry, blackberry preserves and crushed violet aromas with hints of dark chocolate and youthful character. Full and rich in the mouth, with gripping tannins, blackberry and blueberry, nicely integrated oak and vanilla notes, a touch of smoke and leather, tree bark and some licorice and dark chocolate on the long finish. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Schug Pinot Noir Carneros 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Fairly straightforward aromas of ripe cherry and cinnamon. In the mouth its easy drinking and light, with flavors of black cherry, red currant and cranberry. Smooth finish with a touch of oak. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Rombauer Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Deep dark black fruit aromas with a hint of black pepper. Light and fresh fruits with good acidity balance the rich vanilla and oak flavors. Black currants and Kalamata olives evolve over the palate. Toast and leather shore up for the finish. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Rombauer Merlot Napa Valley 2010

    Snoothrank:

    Explosive cherry and blackberry aromas. Ripe black cherry and cinnamon spice on the palate. You'll find blackberry jam, cinnamon, cranberry juice, basil and tomato leaf on the slow-evolving palate. An excellent expression of the Merlot grape. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Annabella Special Selection Merlot 2011

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by veriwine


  • 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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  • Description edited for this page.

    Page modification by 125081Mike Pobega 125081 Mike Pobega


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