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

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • Zinfandel

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

  • 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

  • William Hill Winery

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

  • Don Sebastiani & Sons

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

  • Jessup Cellars

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

  • Round Hill Vineyards & Cellars

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

  • Irony

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

  • Beaucanon Estate

    Situated in beautiful Napa Valley, on the historic Longwood Ranch, Beaucanon Estate reflects the ...

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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

  • Meritage is a made up marketing word that really doesn't denote any ... a ... a wine bottle. It was just Napa's way of marketing a Bdx blend. Red Meritage has to have at least two of the following wines: Cab Sauv, Cab Franc, Petit Verdot, Gros Verdot, Malbec, Merlot, Carmenère or St Macaire. White: Sauv Blanc, Sémillon and or Muscadelle. That'... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines

  • Carneros is at the SanFranBay end of Napa Valley, Al. It's a smaller, more-defined appellation than 'Napa Valley', of which it is a subset, so it's generally more expensive because of that.Won't be so much of a problem, Mark, when MS has shrunk to complete obscurity, which will likely happen well within our lifetimes.Wonder how much control we'l... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines

  • Another nice Syrah; is this actually from Napa Valley?  I figured out something about the web page.  All the pictures I fixed (via MSPaint) were the bigger ones - the picture you see when you click on the small ones that are initially displayed.  I wasn't adjusting the small ones because they looked fine to me in my collection of web browsers.  ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines

  • Aspara Syrah Carneros las Madres Vineyard 2013


    Opened from my vault and let a glass sit for about a half-hour before tasting. Viney or herbaceous nose. However, as the wine warms up a bit Im starting to get a cocoa or mocha thing. A bit stark on entry. Light hit of various red-fruit flavorsred plum, red cherry. Something of a hint of coffee or, maybe, nuttiness around the edge of the to... Read More

    Wine review by EMark

  • Yesterday:-- Limerick Lane2014 Furmint2013 Petite Sirah2012 "Hail ... ... research.Today:-- Quivet2013 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon2013 Pellet Vineyard CS2013 Kennefick Ranch CS2013 Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard CSNow hiding my credit ca Read More

    Forum post in the topic What have you bought lately?

  • Ever tried this?I picked it up for $30 marked down from $80. Seemed like a good ... Very pleasant.2006 TetraNap Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines

  • JD, that Dragonette sounds nice...   As much as I have enjoyed ... ... ... done one? One from Napa that I have enjoyed as well is Clos Pegase's Vin Gris.  But this Unti  I just bought ROCKS.  Dry, excellent acidity, pale peach in color, nice orange/peach notes- very Provencal in style.  Truly an excellent rose.  Although my favorite still has... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • Arger-Martucci Syrah Carneros 2008


    The wine is a deep purple color at the center leading to a bright garnet color ...-napa.htm Read More

    Wine review by jtryka

  • Peju Piccolo Napa Valley 2011


    The aroma will immediately deliver you of Napa. Deep blackberry, black currant, and black cherry and licorice on the nose with touches of powdered sugar and candied plum. Juicy and easy drinking in the mouth with waves of black currant and blackberry fruit. Round tannins and good structure. A bit of chocolate cola on the finish. Notes of cocoa p... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial

  • Robert Mondavi Winery Pinot Noir California Coastal 2011


    A decent table wine. A little sharp, which you'd expect from this price wine, but the flavor is very bright and soft. I was given this at a museum function. I would like to serve it with a sharp cheddar or bold bleu some evening hanging out with friends. Read More

    Wine review by reneeannbutler

  • 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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