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...

  • Syrah

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

  • Sauvignon Blanc

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

  • 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...

  • 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

  • Don Sebastiani & Sons

      To Don Sebastiani and Sons, family is clearly an important aspect of winemaking. While ...

  • T-Vine Cellars

    We are a very small winery located off the beaten path in Calistoga, behind the owner - winemaker...

  • Three Thieves

    You may have heard the tale of the Three Thieves, three regular guys who threw away centuries of ...

  • Round Hill Vineyards & Cellars

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

  • William Hill Winery

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

  • 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...

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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


  • Titus Cabernet Franc 2013

    Snoothrank:

    There was a lot going on with this wine. The nose had a hint of acidity. The taste was full bodied and the finish was long. I'd buy it again. Read More

    Wine review by tjjm


  • Quivet Cellars Las Madres Vineyard Hulda Block Syrah 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Dark purple color. Sulphur funk takes a few minutes to dissipate. Spritz on the tip of the tongue. Lots of red fruit--strawberry, plum. Some black pepper and some earthiness mid-palate. Stiff tannin balanced, though, by acid. Pleasant finish. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Benessere Estate Sangiovese 2014

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by anstett


  • Hendry Napa Valley Cabernet 2009

    Snoothrank:

    Outstanding wine. Very much a surprise when I first tasted. Normally, I expect any fruit I get from a CS to be black--cassis, blackberry. On entry this one presents bright fruitthankfully, not candied. This is followed by a woody and stony rustic sensation. Still some very stiff tanninwhich I would attribute to the Mt. Veeder portion of th... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Jon - 2nd that welcome to the forum.  As an aside to your post the top 2 ... 2 ... - ie, Port, Bordeaux, Napa Cabs etc.It takes a really good palate and lots of experience to assess wines as to their ageability.  I've been doing this wine thing for 45 years now and get/got fooled many times - both way Read More

    Forum post in the topic I'll Probably Get Kicked Off...


  • Sterling Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Diamond Mountain Diamond Mountain Ranch Vineyard 2004

    Snoothrank:

    July 30, 2017 review of a 2004 Sterling Vineyards Diamond Mountain Ranch Cab. Sauv. Definitely at its peak, or slightly passed its peak, but not still quite drinkable. Deep black currant and chocolate on the nose and palate. A bit of lavender and rosemary on the tongue. A little smoke and leather in the aftertaste, almost reminiscent of a fine c... Read More

    Wine review by D9sus 4


  • After a relatively stressful couple of weeks which included a car accident with ... ... I believe to 97 in the Napa [but happy to be corrected on that one] and it does remind you why giving top end Cabernets 15+ years will reap drinking benefits. This wine could easily go for another 10 yearsBy this stage the Pool score was 12 all and any comm... Read More

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


  • Did you say it was on Fox, Stephen? They're particularly skimpy with ... ... Valley then moving towards Napa. So some lazy, half-assed Fox reporter didn't do any research and just recycled an old story, trying to make it topical by tying it into the ever-popular drought context, it would seem.Isn't common wisdom (knock on wood) that the drough... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Alcohol Levels in Californian...


  • Definitely recognizing the Togni as on the younger side, even the CT notes ... ... ... appropriate folks in to Napa. I like what I've heard about them, having their own estate, focus on farming, and not so much about hype or trends, etc.CVNE! Finally some older Rioja in my possession. 2019 would also put this one at 25, old enough to get a ra... Read More

    Forum post in the topic What have you bought lately?


  • Roy Piper did a good video on the cost associated with producing a $150 Napa Cab. It really comes down to economy of scale. The higher your production numbers the better the profit margin. But this is considering direct to customer sales. Distributors eat up a large portion of the profit so DTC is really preferred when you get into higher end wi... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Cost of a Bottle of Wine


  • 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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