Discover Napa Valley Wine Tours

Napa Valley Wine Tours - The impact of Napa Valley Wineries on the international wine industry over the past few decades has been nothing short of incredible. It is even more amazing considering that the revival of the region's wine industry is only a few decades old, and it produces less than 3% of all California Wine.

This gorgeous region's picturesque scenery coupled with world-class wine and food makes it an unforgettable destination. That being said, the Napa Valley is increasingly becoming a tourist magnet, and some general tips will help to make your visit more enjoyable.

Napa Valley Wine Tours - Restaurant Recommendations
Thomas Kellers' French Laundry is the undisputed champion of Napa's many fine dining establishments. Located in Yountville, the food and service are impeccable, although it is definitely pricey. Additionally, reservations must be made exactly 2 months before your meal.

Bistro Jeanty is also located in Yountville and has a Southern French menu. Chef Philippe Jeanty gained a devoted following at Domaine Chandon before starting the first of his three restaurants. He is a master at creating innovative flavor combinations. Bistro Don Giovanni resides just north of the town of Napa on Highway 29. It is a favorite of locals and tourists alike.

They have a great bar, and their large dining room has an energetic ambiance. The restaurant's nightly specials are always fantastic. For a slightly more casual eatery that is off the beaten-path, try the Foothill Cafe in the southwestern part of the town of Napa. This is truly a locals' restaurant.

The unpretentious exterior is no indication of the magnificent menu. Napa residents have access to some of the best restaurants in the country, and many are devoted patrons of the Foothill Cafe.

Napa Valley Wine Tours - Winery Recommendations
The Napa Valley is an extremely diverse wine growing region, and many different wineries specialize in varying varietals and blends.

To get the full tasting experience, it is necessary to visit several different sub-regions within the larger valley. One of my favorite wineries is Stags Leap Cellars. The winery is located in the Stags Leap Appellation off of Silverado Trail in the eastern part of the valley.

The staff in the tasting room is helpful and informative. They offer different flights of tastings at varying prices. Niebaum-Coppola is located on Highway 29 in Rutherford. This winery is more crowded than Stags Leap Cellars, but the beauty of the property more than makes up for this fact.

Francis Ford Coppola displays many artifacts from his movies at the winery. Grgich Hills is a must-visit for any Chardonnay fan. The winery is situated near Niebaum-Coppola on Highway 29. Croatian-born Mike Grgich was initially the winemaker for Robert Mondavi before starting his own venture.

He has arguably made the most consistently excellent Chardonnay in the valley over the years.

Napa Valley Wine Tours - Tasting Room Etiquette
In a winery's tasting room, white wines are generally tasted first, followed by reds, and then dessert wines. Within these categories, lighter-bodied wines preceed fuller-bodied ones.

Water and crackers may be offered to cleanse the palate between each wine. Correct wine etiquette does not dictate that you must finish every glass. Winery tasting rooms provide jars to dispose of excess wine. Do not feel that you need to sample every wine offered- taste what appeals to you.

If you ask for a second tasting of a particular wine, it is in good taste to buy a bottle. Many wineries charge tasting fees which are generally applied to any purchase. It is not mandatory that you buy wine; purchase only what you desire.

That being said, if you have made an appointment at a small winery, it is in good taste to make a purchase. Proper wine etiquette dictates that you not bring children to a tasting room.

For more information about Napa Valley Wineries, visit California - Napa Valley Wine Tours and Accessories. This site contains abundant information about the wineries, terroir, and history of California's many wine regions - Napa Valley Wine Tours.

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