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 (

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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...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • 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...

  • Sauvignon Blanc

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

Subregions of Napa

  • Carneros

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

  • Stag's 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

  • CrauforD Wine Co.

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

  • Jessup Cellars

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

  • 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...

  • Round Hill Vineyards & Cellars

    Rutherford Wine Company is family owned and managed with a portfolio of wines representing the ri...

  • Bond

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

  • William Hill Winery

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

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Napa on Snooth

  • Dmcker,I cannot give specifics happening at present as far as purposeful ... ... ... influence on Pinot. Napa was the biggest culprit that I experienced.  Suddenly, many wineries were making Pinot, and not doing it well.  When out tasting, they would exclaim that the notes of "barnyard" or outright calling it "brett" indicated a fantastic pino... Read More

    Forum post in the topic A purposely 'bretted' wine?

  • I know of a number of people in the craft beer world who are purposely ... ... bottle off leveraged land in Napa or someplace similar) to allow such horseplay, but I don't really know these days who's getting creative on smaller operations where the owner/winemaker has more freedom. Certainly I have fond memories of a number of wines from the ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic A purposely 'bretted' wine?

  • Well it looks like I may get to attend another wine dinner! Fritz Hatton ... representing Arietta wines (Napa). Do you guys know anything about them? I was hoping to do some research in advance.&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Another wine dinner - Arietta...

  • Artesa Elements Meritage 2009


    Very thin for a wine that spent 24 months in barrel. Not much substance at all. Very light and no finish or mid palate. I expected something more from our friends from Artesa. Cheers! Read More

    Wine review by Stallion

  • St Clement Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2011


    One of my faves Read More

    Wine review by mackface

  • Raymond Reserve Merlot 2004


    I love the smooth taste of your 2004 Merlot. Read More

    Wine review by crazyplus40

  • Sterling Vintner's Collection Meritage 2011


    No written review

    Wine review by CageyT

  • Croze Chardonnay Simone Vineyard 2012


    This is a big Napa chardonnay with not too subtle but not over the top oak and hints of butterscotch, ripe pear and honey. Medium acidity goes with a medium long finish that leaves a touch of vanilla on the back of the tongue. For the price I'd put this up against some $50 chards any day. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0

  • Cosentino Winery Chardonnay Napa Valley 2010


    No written review

    Wine review by sgarcia61

  • Roosters Foundation of Orange CountyA charity wine tastingListing Of Wineries ... ... Vin/AlienorPATEL - Napa ValleyPowell Mountain CellarsRhema WinesRozak VintnersRugg FamilySaint James SpiritsScott CellarsSea Shell Vineyards & CellarsSilver Horse WinerySoMa Cellars LLCTanaro River Imports, LLCTroll Bridge Cellars&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine Tasting Orange County...

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