Within the Napa Valley appellation, there are 16 sub-appellations. This means, there are 16 different legally defined and protected geographical locations where grapes are grown and crafted into amazing Napa Valley wines. Some sub-appellations are more well-known than others but all are dedicated to creating wines that truly represent the distinct area of Napa Valley where they come from. In this first part of a three part series, Napa Wine Tours introduces you to the first group of Napa Valley sub-appellations.
Famous for relaxing hot springs, massages, and mud baths, the Calistoga sub-appellation located on the northern tip of Napa Valley is home to well-known wineries such as Chateau Montelena Winery, Clos Pegase Winery, Frank Family Vineyards, and Schramsberg Vineyards.
The wineries in the Oakville sub-appellation are known for their critically acclaimed, award-winning Cabernet Sauvignons. Reserve at tour of the cave and winery with a tasting at Miner Family Vineyards, book a private appointment at Gamble Family Vineyards, or stop by Plumpjack Winery for a walk-in tasting.
This sub-appellation is approximately 6 square miles and at its widest point, 2 miles wide. The vineyards receive more sun than some of the other sub-appellations and are refreshed by cool evenings. Although Rutherford produces award-winning Cabernet Sauvignon, winemakers and growers also produce almost 20 other varietals including Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, and Merlot. Visit the historic Beaulieu Vineyard, taste estate Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc at St. Supery Vineyards & Winery, or choose from a variety of private experiences at Peju Province Winery.
The excellence to be found in the Spring Mountain sub-appellation comes from a collective of family-owned and operated wineries mostly creating Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Visitors to Pride Mountain Vineyards will find, along with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Viognier, and Chardonnay. At Robert Keenan Winery, guests will taste current releases from this winery with 47 wines from the last nine vintages earning 90 to 97 points by internationally renowned wine critic, Robert Parker Jr.
The historic Stags Leap sub-appellation also produces superb Cabernet Sauvignon. The variety of wineries to be found vary from family-owned wineries to internationally renowned wineries. Visit the family-owned Baldacci Family Vineyards, appreciate outstanding wine and the Cape Dutch architecture style of Chimney Rock Winery, or sip on a current release from Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, the infamous winery that seized the winning title in the 176 Paris Wine Tasting.
Make sure to check back next week for part 2 in our blog series focusing on bringing you the diverse, unique, remarkable parts that combine to create the incredible Napa Valley. And remember to contact Napa Wine Tours for your next adventure in Napa Valley.