5. Peju

For over 30 years this amazing Rutherford winery has been welcoming guests to the best that Napa Valley has to offer. Today, a new generation is carrying on the rich tradition of its grade A hospitality and its exquisite estate-grown wines.

Here, you will be able to experience a unique presentation style setting. The wine tastings at Peju are made special because they are hosted by their knowledgeable tasting room ambassadors. The ambassadors have become a beloved staple of Peju. Each ambassador has their own approach to their presentations, which are enriched by their varied backgrounds, talents and personalities. Since no two ambassadors are the same, no two tastings are either!

There are many experiences to be had at Peju. They begin with Harvest Tastings, which allows you to choose four wines to explore. Here you will learn about Peju’s history, winemaking style and the history behind each wine.

If you prefer an elevated experience, check out their Reserve Tasting. This flight comprises five wines, including their most exclusive limited production and reserve wines. For a more rounded experience, you may choose to tour the winery. You may also experience wine and cheese with their Small Farm Cheese and Wine Pairing, where you will be able to taste local, small-farm cheese, that have been perfectly paired with a selection of Peju wines.

Experiences are available in both private and public settings, and range from $35.00 to $125.00.

For more information: Peju

4. Flora Springs

This historic winery was founded in 1978, but its legacy dates back to the late 1800s, when wine grapes were first planted in the property.  If you’re a history buff, this winery is a must!

Flora Spring’s story begins in 1885, with a pair of Scottish brothers who immigrated to Napa and planted a vineyard. The Rennie brothers are credited with installing the first gasoline-powered hydraulic press. During prohibition, the stone winery fell into disrepair, becoming one of Napa’s “Ghost Wineries”. Through the years, many deemed its revitalization as “too big of a project”, but it called to one woman, Flora Komes. In 1978 Flora Springs Winery was founded. Since then, its yields have been winners of many important awards, such as Gold Ribbons, top 100 of Wine Spectator and growers of the year; they were even chosen to be on a wine list during a White House dinner!

As for experiences, Flora Springs offers two distinct ones. You can visit their tasting room or their winery. The tasting room is a modern and chic destination, which was designed to mimic the hillside caves and natural springs of the estate. Here you can indulge in Great Tastes Signature Tasting, Preferred Palates Flagship Tasting, The Trilogy Experience, Paint your Palate Tasting and special seasonal tastings. In the vineyard you can take part of Harvest Vineyard Tour and Tasting, Flora’s Estate Tour and Tasting, Trilogy, Rutherford Hillside Library Tasting and Appellation Tasting. Of course, both localities are open for private events and private tours.

Their endeavor is green, using solar energy, and sustainable. They pride themselves in their organic farming practices as an extension of their philosophy, “Love the land and it will love you back.”

Experiences range from $20 to $85.

For more information: Flora Springs

3. Rombauer

The Rombauer family moved to Napa in 1972, armed with an appreciation for the intimate relationship between food and wine. Great cooks stemmed from this family for generations, whose roots were deep in the winegrowing region of Rheingau, Germany. Here, wine is considered an essential complement to a meal. This grand appreciation turned into passion, and in 1980 Rombauer Vineyards was born.  To this day, this winery is proud to remain in Rombauer family hands.

This winery places great value in consistency. They have only utilized three head winemakers in their 35 years! As much as tradition is upheld, cutting edge practices also take their place to ensure each wine gets the customized attention it deserves. This marriage of old and new truly makes Rombauer one of the greats.

At Rombauer Vineyards you can experience their winery in St. Helena, set high on a tree covered knoll. Here you can promenade through their picture-perfect garden, where you will be able to take in, not only a great glass of wine, but over 100 different plants and flowers, along with whimsical works of art collected by Koerner Rombauer. You can also sit on their porch and take in the dramatic vistas of the Mayacamas Mountains. Other musts are their cozy Tasting Room and their Cave Tour.

All tastings are guided by their knowledgeable hosts and feature a great flight of their critically acclaimed wines. The tastings mix some of their fan favorites along with limited-production and single-vineyard bottlings wines.  Also, be on the lookout for their amazing events throughout the year!

Experiences range from $9, for a single glass tasting, to $60, and all require an appointment.

For more information: Rombauer Vineyards

2. Darioush

Darioush Khaledi is a lifelong wine collector. He immigrated to the United States determined to realize his dream and share his love of wine. With this dream Darioush was founded in 1997.

Darioush is a worldly journey. This 120 acre southern Napa winery is committed to the Bordeaux-style of winemaking, a style admired for the potential to express a wine’s character. If hospitality is high on your list, look no further.  The feeling of family is palpable due to the high standards of hospitality born of the Iranian Tarof culture, where politeness is an art.

The unique and high-end experiences will fascinate everyone in your party; and at Darioush, there is and experience for everyone. The Quintessential begins with a taste of caviar and a glass of Krug champagne. You then proceed to Darioush Khaledi’s private cellar to enjoy his personal collection. By Invitation Only takes you and your host through Darioush Khaledi’s journey, as you sample some of the estate’s finest offerings and enjoy small bites crafted by the winery’s personal chef. In Fine Wines, Artisan Cheeses you will engage in an experience for all the senses. You will learn how to delicately balance food and wine, while tasting limited release wines. For a more informal setting, choose the Portfolio Tasting where you will indulge in a flight of five amazing wines. If you enjoy history and world cultures perhaps the Culture of Wine Lunch is for you.

Experiences range from $40 to $300.

For more information: Darioush

1. Clos Du Val

Clos Du Val is deeply rooted in the Napa Valley wine community. Now is the perfect time to visit this iconic winery, as it goes through a period of unprecedented change geared to new wine styles and viticultural practices. They have gone back to their roots by focusing on the Stags Leap District Cabernets that first catapulted them to fame. They have reduced their Cabernet production by almost half, focusing on quality, not quantity. Instead of making more wine, they are making extraordinary wine!

At Clos Du Val, everything starts in their vineyards. The jewel of their estate is the majestic vineyard located in the heart of the Stags Leap District. You can visit this crown of Napa for a gracious wine tasting experience. You may choose to book a private or public winery tour and tasting, where your wine educator will take you through the beautiful vine rows and into the heart of the working winery. You can taste al fresco or inside the Pinot Noir Tank Room.  For a more leisurely experience, how about a picnic on the estates’ lush front lawn or the picturesque olive groves? Or perhaps a relaxing afternoon in the shade of the vineyard’s cabanas, as you sip on a delicious wine while taking in a stunning views of the mountains? Sounds great!

For pricing and more information: Clos Du Val Winery