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April 19, 2020 3 min read

Napa Valley is a great destination to plan a vacation – no matter if you are a wine connoisseur or would simply like to get together with your friends and enjoy the beautiful scenery. This is why we made a gift to ourselves and organized a trip out to the Napa Valley when we visited friends in San Francisco.

First, if you decide to visit the wineries by yourself and not as part of a bus tour, be aware that it is a good idea to make your reservations in advance as more than five million people visit Napa Valley each year. This is a lot of people for such a small region that is only about 35 miles long.

Historically, Napa Valley has always attracted many people due to its climate and prime location. Internationally, the Napa Valley peaked interest with the results of the Paris Wine Tasting, also known as the Judgment of Paris. In 1976 Steven Spurier, a British wine seller, organized a blind wine tasting competition. The contestants had to vote for the best Chardonnays and the best Reds. Surprisingly, the Californian wines rated best in both categories. Today, Napa Valley has continued to grow and expand and is home to literally hundreds of wineries. Some of the best wineries in the world are located right in Napa Valley.

Besides the world-class wineries and breathtaking scenery, the Napa Valley is also home to 6 Michelin restaurants – the French Laundry (3*), The Restaurant at Meadwood Napa Valley (1*), Bouchon Bistro (1*), Kenzo Napa (1*), La Toque (1*), The Restaurant at Auberge (1*). We would definitely recommend stopping at one of these restaurants to experience fine-dining at its best.

If you don't plan on eating in a restaurant, keep in mind that it is a good idea to bring along a packed lunch. While some wineries offer some snacks, there may not always be substantial amounts of food so it is a good idea to be prepared. Many wineries offer picnic areas that are absolutely stunning so you will have plenty of opportunities to enjoy a relaxing and breathtaking lunch.

All in all, the Napa Valley is home to over 400 wineries. As there is such a variety in vineyards and taste is very subjective it is hard to pick only a handful of them. We still want to introduce you to three wineries that will definitely not disappoint you.

 

  1. About 300 feet above Calistoga, you can find the Sterling Vineyards that are accessible by using an aerial tram up to the hills. Wine tastings start at $35 per person including the tram ride allowing stunning views over the impressive architecture and land that remind of the island of Mykonos. No in advance reservations are required and walk-ins are welcome. This location is great for celebrating birthdays, anniversaries or a proposal.

 

  1. If you love to check out the wine section in your local super market, chances are high that you have seen a wine bottle with a label showing a prisoner held in chains. The Prisoner is a Red Blend that got recognition not only by its unique aromas of cherries, dark chocolate, roasted fig, raspberry, pomegranate, and vanilla but also by their provocative labels. The winery’s lounge represents nothing less: A tasting room that is nothing like a traditional experience but is very down to earth and maybe also a little dark. Wine tastings start at $45 per person. Reservations are required.

 

  1. HALL St. Helena is a stunning property combining art and wine in perfect harmony. Especially the 35-foot-tall Bunny Foo Foo art piece is certainly a piece of art to remember. The winery offers a guided tour through the property and the impressive artwork and a tasting of four wines. Tastings start at $40. Reservations are not required.

 

While taking wine tours on different vineyards, we were not only impressed by the landscape and the quality of wines but also by many decorative accessories the wineries had to offer. Tables and signs made out of barrels, beautiful and artistic decanters as well as wine-related decorative gift ideas. This gave us great inspiration for products and gifts we want to feature on our website. You can find all of the products we have pre-selected due to their uniqueness and originality on: www.winewildwest.com/collections/all

Find a wine-related gift for your loved ones or yourself today. Cheers! :)


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