If you’ve been passing by V. Sattui Winery on Highway 29 for years, like I have, you might want to try stopping in. Compared to the smaller, intimate tasting rooms in Napa Valley, V. Sattui looks like Grand Central Station with overflowing parking lots and expansive lawns filled with picnic tables and hundreds of visitors from opening time to closing. Not usually my kind of wine tasting environment, but on a recent weekend we decided to see what makes this one of the most visited wineries in Napa Valley.
Surprisingly, a parking spot opened up right in front of the main building as we drove onto the grounds (a good sign and very helpful later). The place was packed, inside and out. The greeter directed us to the premium tasting room a little farther from the highway, saying the main tasting room was full. It was.
The premium tasting room is a relatively small, intimate setting and there were perhaps six other visitors there when we arrived. We were offered an option of regular or premium flights, I took the regular and my lovely finance, Barbara, took the premium.
We discovered several interesting things about V. Sattui Winery. First, they have a very extensive offering of wines of many types and varietals, from the very sweet to very dry. All the wines are reasonably priced and for sale only at the winery (most expensive is about $60). We liked many of the wines we tasted, but our favorite is the 2009 Russian River Valley Zinfandel (Gilsson Vineyard). Excellent.
We selected a mixed case and headed out for our dinner reservations at the Rutherford Grill, the perfect end to an adventure at an old winery that was a new and wonderful experience for us. I highly recommend looking past the crowds and trying some really great, reasonably-priced wines that you’ll consider buying again and again. While you’re there, shop in the gift shop and deli. Lots of great, fresh, local foods perfect for a picnic at the winery or to take home.
V. Sattui Winery 1111 White Lane, Saint Helena, CA 94574 (fronts Highway 29)
Telephone (707) 963-7774 http://www.vsattui.com
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
John Souerbry is a Wine Adventurer whose fearless explorations originate from base camps in Northern California’s Silicon Valley and in Wine Country. When not knee-deep in urban jungle, swamp or vineyard, he shares tall tales and tasting notes in his Wine Adventure Journal, practices real estate, plays something that by appearance loosely resembles the game of golf, tries to fish, loses frequently at poker, sips wine and scotch, and is a student of American Kenpo karate. John is not affiliated with any wine industry establishments and his opinions regarding wines and wine-related destinations are completely his own. Caveat lector.
Shameless business plug: Wine Country and Silicon Valley Real Estate
Tags: V. Sattui Winery, Napa Valley tasting rooms, Wine Country real estate