Winery Hopping at Napa Valley, California

It was my 3-month holiday in Germany in 2001 where I got exposed to wine drinking that I can’t remember a day that I never had a wine either with a meal or just simply over a casual chat during those days.

During my holiday in the US in 2009, I had the opportunity to come this side of California and got very much interested to visit a winery. I have seen vineyards in Europe but never been to a winery yet, so this one has really made me so excited.

We found first V. Sattui Winery where we entered and parked the car. The building looks like an old house and the surrounding with the old structure and architecture gave me the feeling that I was in a small town in Europe. It has a picnic ground  shaded by a 250 year old giant oak tree with wooden picnic tables and benches, a lovely spot to laze around on a weekend afternoon.

 

 

 We walked across the grounds towards another building where the Deli Shop and Gift shop is located and where the wine tasting is being done. We were lucky that the winery does not require prior appointment and walk-ins are accommodated.

They call it Italian Marketplace and as we entered I was amazed with what I saw at the Deli Shop. I remember the last time I came to a similar shop like this was in Alsace, France (unfortunately there was no digicam those days yet that I saved my film for scenic spots 🙁  hence I stored everything  in my brain memory), where a wide array of cheese variety in different shapes and containers are displayed. Memory flashed back where my German friend introduced me to a bad smelling cheese but tasted so yummy that we bought some to be taken home to Blackforest. FYI, Alsace just lies at the boundary of France and Germany and Blackforest in Germany’s side.



The Deli Shop also sells processed meats, freshly baked breads and sandwiches. I never expected to see something like this in a country dominated by Ronald Mcdonald and KFC.

 

After satisfying my curiosity to all of the stuff displayed at the shop, we entered the other room and proceeded to the wine tasting counter to have a sip of that fermented grape juice.

 I am no wine expert but having tried different wines in Europe, I know what I want to drink whether white, red or sparkling……..the wine in V. Sattui, I just simply love it.

After the wine tasting, we visited the V. Sattui Winery Museum where they showcased the equipment used in the past and information on V. Sattui Winery’s early beginnings.

 

 Opposite the museum is the barrel room where they stored the wine waiting for it’s due date…..like a fetus in a mother’s womb waiting to be delivered in this chaotic world 🙂

Take note!!! V. Sattui wines are not available outside the winery. You have to buy the wines from them only.


After some  time of looking around the place, we went out of the winery to go to another one. It was already late afternoon and a Sunday, most of them were closed but somehow luck was with us to find out that Robert Mondavi Winery was still open.

We went inside the winery and checked for the wine tasting, as we reached the place at half past four, we didn’t go for wine tasting anymore, otherwise we will be rushing  as they are closing at 5PM. Instead of sipping while enjoying the taste, we would have been gulping, LOL!

We explored the place instead, checked on the gift shop……

walked on the green lawn……………

and enjoyed the scenic view of the vast vineyard just right at the backside of the winery!

 As we left the place, in one corner at the front of the winery are grapes waiting to be harvested…..

 This was in October 2009, I went home in November of the same year to my home country. In December of 2009, I had the opportunity to visit my hometown where I met my elementary and high school classmates after 27 long years without seeing each other. Certainly that calls for a celebration, we had a small party and we bought alcoholic drinks but not that wide choice being in a small town in the province approximately 170 kilometers north of Manila. Red wine was there which is my preferred alcoholic drink, I was surprised to have a good wine in that small town, I went to search for the bottle and checked on the label. Voila! It was a Robert Mondavi wine. How I wished to tell everybody about the wine and my wonderful visit from the winery where that wine was fermented. However, I opted to shut up and quietly  enjoyed sipping the wine and licking it from my own lips!!!


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