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

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • Merlot

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

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

  • StoneFly Vineyard

    Founded more than a decade ago on a passion for fly-fishing and fine wine, StoneFly Vineyards pro...

  • Hagen Heights Vineyards

    As the French are fond of saying the quality begins with the very specific terroir or soils and w...

  • Michael Pozzan Winery

    Michael Pozzan Winery is owned and operated by Michael and Mary Ann Pozzan, both natives of Calif...

  • 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...

  • Three Thieves

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

  • Bond

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

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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

  • Miner the Oracle 2011


    Elegant and herbal notes of ripe raspberry and cranberry fruit with a bold note of vanilla. Powerful and pronounced on the palate, with spicy flavors of cream and big bunches of red fruit, black olive and dark chocolate, some licorice and leather notes.90 pts Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial

  • Emark, sorry was out of town. Wine kept in temperature controlled wine cellar ... ... excellent reds. Been to Napa and love it, plus my favorite is Storybook and Phelps. If that helps and thank you for your information and interest. Regards Lar Read More

    Forum post in the topic larry2525

  • Cade Plumpjack Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain Reserve 2012


    Milk and cream flavors. Very smooth, long finish. Read More

    Wine review by nancymar

  • Rosenblum Pink Moscato 2011


    One characteristic that was expected and favourable, is "sweet" on the first bite. This promising start however turns to dry and oaky rather quickly. The second sip was searching for that sweet, which was refound, but lost again amounst the dry wood. Ah well, not my cup of, but if you're looking for dynamics with a chew of dry... Read More

    Wine review by Aegelis

  • Roots Run Deep Educated Guess Pinot Noir 2012


    No written review

    Wine review by artimage

  • Ctrl/DescriptonYearPricetotalOpus One1997300300Opus one1999300300Opus ... ... Pinot Noir20115555Silver Oak Napa Valley Cab Sau2003110110Silver Oak Napa Valley Cab Sau2004145145Silver Oak Alexander Valley200490180Dry creek Estate Petite Sirah20123060Dry Creek Saillor Red Wine Special Reserve20129090Dry creek Pinot Noir20134080Dry Creek Endeavor... Read More

    Forum post in the topic larry2525

  • Interesting description of the 2012 Chesters Anvil Zinfandel wine from their ... their ... RanchAtlas Peak, Napa Valley$40   400 casesORDER HEREOrange and clove spice, tobacco, leather, cola, caramel, tiramisu. Rich layered tannins. A wine that rewards the imbiber by unraveling little mysteries as it aerates over time in the glass. You awake ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic And now for something...

  • Matt Parish Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2013


    Naked Wines selection. Much better than the 2012. Still a bit young, but nicely balanced fruit and oak, more to the fruit and herb side than oak. Opens with violets, dates, and fig, then on to cedar wood and pepper, and then tobacco, tar, and mushroom. Medium tannins and acidity with a long finish of herb, mushroom, and deep ripe plum. As it ope... Read More

    Wine review by puhnner

  • Lagier Meredith Tribidrag 2012


    Quite dark purple color. Nose has a lot of red fruit aromas, and, maybe, some spice. Jammy red fruit on the tongue. Fat and mouth-filling. Good tannic backbone keeps this one from being an insipid fruit bomb. Read More

    Wine review by EMark

  •  '13 Apsara Cabernet Sauvignon Kenefick Ranch, Calistoga, Napa Valley Day 4This wine was wound up tight but once opened it revealed layers and layers of flavors.Nose of cedar, graphite, blue fruit, black currant, roasted coffee bean, soy sauce.  Mouth is rich and layered with black fruit, cigar box, tobacco, spice. Deep dark core of black fruit,... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • 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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