- #NapaValley was designated California’s first American Viticultural Area or AVA in 1981.
- #NapaValley has 16 sub- or nested AVAs demonstrating the incredible diversity of our region
- #Napa has a Mediterranean climate, which affects only 2% of the earth’s surface – characterized by sunny, dry summers
- Within #Napa can be found half the world’s soil orders..
- Did you know that only 9% of #NapaValley is planted to grapevines?
- In #Napa we grow more than 3 dozen wine grape varieties – from #albariño to #zinfandel
- #Napa’s warm, dry growing season and morning fog allows grapes to fully ripen & maintain acidity
- Did you know #Napa’s To Kalon Vineyard was planted in 1868 by HW Crabb? To Kalon is Greek for “highest beauty".
- Fun fact about Napa: over 60% of wineries produce less than 5k cases per year.
- Did you know #NapaValley has about 1/6th the planted grapevine acreage of #Bordeaux?
- Once widely planted, today only about 25 hectares/60 acres of Chenin remain
- #SauvBlanc is the fourth most widely-produced wine grape variety in #Napa.
- #Chardonnay is #Napa’s 2nd most widely planted wine grape (behind #cabernet) - 6,900 acres/30,500 tons in 2014.
- Mighty #Cabernet is the king of grapes in #Napa w/ 20,600 acres planted (40% of the total 45k acres planted)
- #Napa’s quality #Cabernet commands the highest average price per ton of all CA winegrapes – $5,500/ton in 2014
- Lots of #petitverdot grown in #Napa (2,900 tons/2014) but very little bottled as a stand-alone variety
The six unexpected Napa Valley wines
2014 Artesa Napa Valley Albariño ($28, 14.2%) - fermented and aged 5 months in stainless steel (85%) and new french oak barrels (15%). Starts with peach, then pineapple-lemon, then honeysuckle, with a long acidic finis. Karen MacNeil: This #albariño from @Artesa is easy to love. It’s a perfect #apéritif & great way to start the flight.
2013 Cornerstone Cellars Napa Valley (Oak Knoll District ) Chenin Blanc ($25, 15.5%) - white fruit aroma; citrus, velvety texture, and mineral palate; finishes with plenty of acid. Karen MacNeil: Not as full bodied as #chardonnay, but not as light bodied as #pinot grigio. This #chenin is right in the middle & I love the crisp finish on this @CornerstoneNapa #cheninblanc #EasyToDrink.
2013 Robert Mondavi Winery Napa Valley Fumé Blanc ($17, 15.5%): Napa Valley – 89% (61% Wappo Hill Vineyard, 20% To Kalon Vineyard); Mendocino County - 11%. Starts with lemon grass, but palate is deeper with minerals and finishes strong & long in acids. Karen MacNeil: This @RobertMondavi Fumé Blanc has beautiful focus and a lovely salinity. Long flavors of spice and bitter citrus.
2013 Alpha Omega Unoaked Napa Valley Chardonnay ($33) - sees no ML or oak, but spent 6 months “sur lie,” which contributes to it’s creamy texture and and allows apple-tangerine-citrus notes to shine through. Karen MacNeil: I like the @AOwinery “Unoaked” #Chardonnay a lot. It’s a wine that’s effortless to drink all day long.
2012 Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ($29, 15.5%): 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, 4% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot, 1% Malbec. Blackberries prevalent throughout; herbaceous and textured, some chocolate, long soft finish. Karen MacNeil: This @RobertMondavi #cabernet offers a tremendous value. Each glass would only cost you the equivalent of a Starbucks latté.
2010 St. Supéry Estate Vineyard & Winery Dollarhide Ranch Napa Valley Petit Verdot ($50, 14.5%):
97% Petit Verdot, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon; 100% French oak (50% new oak), 20 month. Big dark fruit, spices, chocolate, lingering barnyard notes - envelop the mouth. Karen MacNeil: This @StSupery #petitverdot is very focused and precise. There’s no static – it sings its song exactly.