Wine tours of Napa Valley
In Napa Valley, the grape harvest season is upon us. If you want to see the wineries at their busiest, this is the time. If you’d rather have the chance to actually talk with the winemakers and not be underfoot while they’re trying to get things done, this is the time to schedule a visit for somewhat later in the year.
A number of travel companies have set up wine tours of the Napa Valley area in which you can visit a series of vineyards accompanied by other wine lovers. You can learn all about winemaking from the people who have devoted their lives to it. This will take several days, so you’ll want to be sure of finding a room in a hotel in the area — another good reason to plan and schedule ahead.
Let a wine club bring the wines to you
There is another way to tour the best wineries of Napa Valley. If you join a wine club, you can stay at home and let them bring the wine to you. When you agree to buy a certain number of bottles every year, you get a discount on those bottles — and sometimes those bottles are sent as a series that acts as a tour of the vineyards of Napa Valley, complete with all the information you could want on where and how the grapes were grown, what to expect from the wine and what foods to pair it with.
Touring a winery near St. Helena
Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards in Napa Valley, a 10-minute drive from downtown St. Helena, is one of the best vineyards in the Napa Valley area. Their Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux blends are widely regarded as among the best wines in Napa. It holds tastings in its barrel caves, where current releases and library wines may be sampled and visitors can learn all about the process of making and storing the wine. Cave tastings are $65, but one tasting fee can be waived by joining their wine club or making a $100 purchase.
On a wine tours, you might get a chance to sample the 2012 Right Bank. 2012 was a perfect winemaking year in Napa Valley in both yield and quality, and the ’12 Right Bank reflects this. The strongest element of the aroma and palate is blackberry, but it is combined with notes of plum, red berries, dark cocoa, leather, roses, blue violets, clove, anise and allspice. Like the 2011 vintage, its grape and oak tannins blend smoothly together to accompany the bright acidity and fruit, and it is expected to age well for up to 30 years.
Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards can be visited as part of a tour, or you can join their wine club today and find out what they have to offer.