Trip to Napa / Sonoma--favorite winery? - Printable Version

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- RAD - 07-04-2000 03:02 PM

This message exists in other forms in other threads: Italian wines (barbera) and ports (California ports).

But just to cover our bases:

My wife and I will be in Napa / Sonoma this weekend, 7/8-9. We already have plans to visit a handful of wineries (Matanzas Creek, Fife, Caymus, Jordan).

Does anyone have a "must-see" suggestion? A diamond in the rough? A place with something different and interesting, that is available only at the winery, perhaps?

We definitely have thoughts of our own, and it is short notice, but we're interested in others' opinions!



- Bucko - 07-04-2000 03:31 PM

In N. Sonoma, close to Ferrari-Carano, is David Coffaro Winery. Dave is a real piece of work. He makes a small amount of delicious wine at very reasonable prices. You walk into his small barn/winery and your senses are assailed. There stands Dave in a muscle shirt pouring wine, Mohammed Ali paraphernalia on the wall, and 6 foot speakers at the other end blaring out opera. A real disconnect. Dave is still enthusiastic about his work and it is catching. If you make it, tell him Bucko says hello.


- Scoop - 07-04-2000 04:09 PM

For a great view (and some great wines -- Bordeaux-style blends and Rhone variations), go to Joseph Phelps in Napa, near St. Helena off the Silverado Trail. It's free, but you do have to make a reservation, however, so call ahead a day in advance to see when the tours/tastings are offered.

(707) 963-2745



- RAD - 07-04-2000 04:39 PM

Sounds great!

Thanks, Bucko--I'll look him up and stop by, and will mention your name.

And thank you too, Scoop--I happen to have a case of the 1997 Phelps Cab--not the Insignia, just the regular Napa appelation--I'll call for an appointment there as well.

I'm still open to others' suggestions, and if we happen to find something funky in our travels, we'll follow up here...


- winoweenie - 07-04-2000 08:25 PM

Rad, unfortunately most of the diamonds have been cut by RP, WS, CG or the other destroyers of mav wines at affordable prices. IMHO one of the most beautiful wineries in Napa is Diamond Creek.Not open to the public, but if you`d like to go up and look at the super views and maybe take a picnic lunch and eat at the lake,let me know and I`ll contact Al and get his OK and let you know how to get in. Von Strasser and Reverie are rite in back of DC on Diamond Mtn. Winoweenie

- RAD - 07-04-2000 08:29 PM

Winoweenie, thank you for the kind offer. I'm game. What do I need to do?

- Innkeeper - 07-05-2000 08:29 AM

Highly recommend the visit to Sterling. The ride up alone is worth the trip.

- RAD - 07-05-2000 07:39 PM

Winoweenie, thank you. Sounds wonderful. I'm sending you an email as we speak.

- RAD - 07-15-2000 07:59 AM

First, thanks to all who offered suggestions. We took winoweenie up on his offer to let us visit Diamond Creek, but unfortunately, we never quite found it--though we were very close!

Saturday in Sonoma, we visited Matanzas Creek, BR Cohn, Arrowood, and Chateau St Jean. As it stood, we also had a tight schedule, so were unable to take advantage of the other kind offers and suggestions. Picked up some 97 Olive Hill cabs and merlot at Cohn, some great 97 Syrahs at Arrowood, and some amazing merlots at CSJ--some of the 95 reserve, and some 94s that they's "found" in the warehouse during a recent move.

Sunday in Napa we visited Caymus, Heitz, and Joseph Phelps (the latter after spending a couple of hours trying to find Diamond Creek, which winoweenie graciously set up for us--thanks again, wino). It was our first visit to Phelps--what a beautiful property. A great tour/tasting as well--the Belgian who leads the tastings there has a business called "Grape Escapes"--apparently Phelps contracts him out, and he does a great job. Tried a chardonnay, the regular cab, the Insignia, and finished with one of their desert wines. Brought home some of the desert wines and a Grenache port that I hadn't seen in NYC.

All in all, a great trip--thanks again to all who posted suggestions. [img][/img]

- winoweenie - 07-15-2000 03:12 PM

Rick, Look a couple of posts up the board on this thread. The directions are, I think, fairly specific. Sorry you couldn`t find DC as you would amend you`re favorite places. Glad you had a good time. Winoweenie

[This message has been edited by winoweenie (edited 07-16-2000).]