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

  • 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...

  • Syrah

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • 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

  • Jade Mountain

    History Since 1988, Jade Mountain has been a pioneer in the production of age-worthy Rhône-style ...

  • Don Sebastiani & Sons

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

  • 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...

  • Eagle's Trace

    All great wines have a sense of place. The French call it terroir - the site, the soil and the cl...

  • Three Thieves

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

  • 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

  • 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


  • Vineyard 29 Cru Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

    Snoothrank:

    An outstanding Canernet for the 44-50 dollar price tag! This is another amazing wine from the genus that is Phileppe Melka. The wine is rich, bright, supple, and smooth. This is an outstanding showing to Vineyard 29 portfolio! Don't miss this one! Cheers! Read More

    Wine review by Stallion


  • Textbook Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Not a bad Cabernet,,,,I just expected more from everything I read. Lots of cherry and licorice on the nose. The wine lacks a solid backbone, and as a result ends up being a tad bit thin......It was just ok....I wanted more substance. Cheers! Read More

    Wine review by Stallion


  • Orin Swift Veladora Sauvignon Blanc 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Gorgeous nose with coconut on the palate. Read More

    Wine review by Mr Dolce


  • Orin Swift Abstract 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Jammy fruit, juicy. Read More

    Wine review by Mr Dolce


  • Orin Swift Cellars Papillon Napa Valley 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Chalky, big, young, full bodied. Read More

    Wine review by Mr Dolce


  • Darren--'09 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, '11 Block 28 Zin and '11 Blocks 2 & 22 Zin.  You may or may not have seen OT's comment about the difficulty with '11 Zins from Napa Valley.  So, we'll see about these, but, probably, not for, at least, a few months.Well, last night we met nephew and his wife at a wine bar in Fullerton.  They are back f... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


  • Rombauer Chardonnay 2013

    Snoothrank:

    2 bottles rejected by our guest because of Frizzante, a bubbly spritz on the palate. This was confirmed on both issues. One by taste and one by sound. Read More

    Wine review by William Djubin


  • Mondavi Napa Reserve Cabernet 2008

    Snoothrank:

    Deep fruity wine, solid napa cab. Enjoyed by both Carolyn and I Read More

    Wine review by jcottrell


  • Hendry Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Fresh, slightly floral nose. Very interesting combination of fruit flavors on introduction to the palate--Green apple, Kiwi, Peach, even Pineapple and a touch of Lemon. Acid is the combining component. Not your California butter bomb Chardonnay, but not your subtle complex Burgundy style either. However, as the wine warms up a bit, it does s... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Rombauer Chardonnay 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by runningbear


  • 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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    Page modification by 125081Mike Pobega 125081 Mike Pobega


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