Wine clubs and tastings at vineyards
The best vineyards in Napa have tasting rooms and wine caves, for sampling old library wines and newer vintages at a moderate cost. Joining a wine club will get you invited to wine tastings. Larger vineyards schedule tours, and smaller vineyards can often be toured by appointment. At a smaller vineyard, you have a much better chance of talking to someone involved in making the wine, or even the owner — although they’re likely to be very busy.
One of the best vineyards in Napa outside 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. 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.
A wine you might find at an Anderson’s Conn Valley wine club wine tasting is the 2009 Estate Reserve Cabernet. Coming from an excellent year with a long hang time for the grapes, the ’09 Estate Reserve is a dense purple wine with a reddish-purple edge. Its aroma is of red and black cassis, violets and concentrated minerals. It has a medium to full-bodied mouthfeel and the flavor of dark berries and red fruits with earth and graphite notes. Join their wine club today and try a more recent Estate Reserve.