When your taste buds start dancing for a wine-tasting vacation, Napa Valley is on the top of the destination menu. Decades ago, Napa’s Beringer Vineyards did a promotional vacation, inviting nearby silver screen sirens into the vineyard hills, with the enticement that “All Roads Lead to Beringer.” It drew the likes of Marliyn Monroe and Clark Gable – a hugely booming success that put Napa Valley on the map as a wine aficionados dream destination and lead to promotional vacationing on a much higher and respected level. Italianesque, Medieval, Contemporary yet with its own distinct and sophistication, Napa Valley is a desired destination for travelers – admired for its beauty, lush vineyards, wineries, activities, culture, cuisine and aesthetically pleasing and varied architecture. This quaint, historic California city features a charming downtown district with unique shops, restaurants, galleries, live theater, historical buildings, nightlife and entertainment, all on the banks of the beautiful Napa River – so much for so many traveling personalities. Traveling through Wine Country is one of the most endearing and delicious activities for travelers in this social centerpiece of California. While traveling amid scenic views of sweeping vistas, rolling greens, mountain ranges and nestled within the most vibrant atmosphere, there’s a heightened level of romanticism when touring many of Napa’s 400-plus wineries, or as most as you can in one trip. The royal, Medieval, Spanish, castle-like or contemporary architecture of the wineries adds to the charm and overall travel experience. The variety of wineries is staggering and awe-inspiring, and even includes the famed Napa “Wine & Dine” Train through Wine Country. Don’t be discouraged when you don’t get to visit all of them in one visit, even a handful will get your blood pumping and leave you with a long list of tasty memories – not to mention camera opportunities. That’s the glory of repeat visits: No one trip is exactly the same but just as unforgettable and enjoyable. But you should start looking into Napa Valley wineries that you really want or must visit while in Napa, and Best Vacations Ever has a few suggestions for you as you plan the ultimate, low-cost vacation with Best Vacations Ever Napa Valley adventures brought you by Preferred Guest Resorts.
Napa Valley is pulsating with numerous activities and attractions that tempt travelers and please all interests so those not into all wine-and-dine experiences can have just as much fun. Check out our Napa Valley Must-Do Activities page to see Napa means business when it comes to couples and families alike having an incredible vacation in California. Note: the button to Must-Do Activities is located on the Destination page of this website, bestvacationsever.com. Wineries are even family friendly offering the kids their own grape concoctions to feel part of the action/experience, and negating the singles’ only stereotype, especially when you take a look at all the area has to offer and our Must-Do Activities. But for wine aficionados, the bliss and romance it can bring to a couple’s getaway, and focuses on the best places to visit and best way to see Napa Valley at the lowest cost possible:
Custom Best Vacations Ever promotional vacation packages are provided by 30-plus-year enhanced promotional travel leader Preferred Guest Resorts (PGR), and they typically include complimentary, primly located accommodations and other possible travel incentives like attraction tickets and specials with preferred-partner Alamo® rental cars so you can travel through Wine Country at your leisure. Note: There is nothing better than touring Wine Country by car so you can come and go where you want to go as you please, but many tour groups are readily available. Call PGR’s U.S.—based, corporate-headquartered Travel Reservation Center at 800-656-2780 where you will find a smiling, happy professional on the other end ready to make your Napa Valley dreams come true for the lowest possible prices. Your much thicker wallet will thank you later, and you’ll be the envy of your most well traveled friends So, as you head out for the 2014 harvest, here just a small few of Napa Valley’s top wineries, from quaint to extravagant, that all offer a full-bodied wine-tasting experience:
Castello di Amorosa – Worthy of an extended review, this spectacular, architectural treasure was authentically designed and built in the13th-century as a Medieval/Tuscan wine fortress on the hillside of Calistoga. This castle and grounds covering an impressive 121,000 square feet is a MUST-SEE Wintery on your Best Vacations Ever trip to Napa, and why you will want a car to travel through all the towns that represent the Napa region. A quick jaunt north of Napa, in Calistoga finds the unique winery that produces hand-crafted, Italian-style wines. Castle owner Dario Sattui, of the Sattui pioneer vintner family, finally opened its gates to the public in 2007. The experience is superior, with the most romantic Tuscan-style setting and atmosphere, including horse-drawn winery tours, that make a stunning for a romantic cohabitating couple’s proposal. Also worthy of mention are some of the most impressive highlights at Castello di Amerossa include 5 defensive towers with battlements, 1,000 pound hand-hewn doors from Italy, 107 Rooms (95 devoted to winemaking), 8 levels, with 4 underground , and a Great Hall with a 22-foot-high coffered ceiling), featuring hand-painted frescoes inspired by Ambrogio Lorenzetti’s “Buon Governo” (Good Government) in Siena, Italy, as well as a 12,000 square-foot Grand Barrel Room featuring 40 Roman cross-vaulted brick ceiling, Italian handmade state-of-the-art triple-jacketed fermentation tanks, truly photographic hand-painted murals on the stall doors of the ladies’ room, hand-forged ironwork by Italian artisans over open flame, and more than 170 containers of handmade antique bricks and tiles brought over from Europe. Additional authentic features for history and architecture buffs of Castello do Amerosa include a church, drawbridge, a glorious courtyard, a watchtower, torture chamber, loggia, secret passageways and an Italian outdoor oven. Make sure to bring your camera and extra batteries to capture the many indescribable majestic views, and indescribable architecture and features of this Medieval castle winery in Napa Valley!
Quintessa – The polar opposite, being a beautiful, more contemporary vineyard totaling 280 acres, with 170 acres dedicated to the planting of the classic Bordeaux grape varieties in 26 vineyard blocks that make some 40 different wines. The sprawling estate includes a valley, a lake, a river, five hills, as well as rich flora and fauna. It is adorned with a diversity of hilltops, terraces, hilltops foothills and riversides that add to the aesthetics of this stellar winery with gracious vintners and fine wines. A glass of wine on the lanai by the lake is an unforgettable moment.
Anomaly– In this case, a size and quantity doesn’t matter as much as quality. This small winery packs a serious punch and serves a great story. Among the many large wineries lies the charming Anomaly Vineyards, one of the two smallest wine producers in Napa Valley and a MUST–SEE and TASTE winery on your Best Vacations Ever adventure tour through Napa’s Wine Country. Anomaly has a quaint tasting room where your guide, typically Seth, the owners’ son, shares the story of how his folks flew out from the East Coast to retire in Napa Valley, making a few bottles of wine. The wine was so spectacular that friends and connoisseurs convinced the retirees to start their own winery. They gave it a successful go, and every cork is stamped with their signature tagline “Trust Your Palette.” Anomaly also sells the family olive oil, which is imported from their uncle’s olive farm in Cortona, Italy, which boasts numerous olive trees that are some 600 years old.
Schramsberg Vineyards – The ethereal estate is a registered historic landmark, located just south of Calistoga on the richly forested slopes of Diamond Mountain. It’s home to the oldest hillside vineyards in Napa with a total of 218 acres, 43 acres of which are planted with vines. According to Patricia Stone, “The Estate has been passed down through family generations from Jacob Schram, to the Davies Family, and is now in the hands of their youngest son, Hugh, now President and CEO of the 40-year old sparkling wine house in 2005.” Schramsberg is the first American winery to follow the traditional hand-turning French Champagne method, and is still now one of only a few that follows the traditional French champagne-making method. Candles accent the two miles of winding tunnels that stock 3 million bottles of sparkling wine that are cautiously guarded. Schramsberg has also played a role in world history, as the Blanc de Blancs was used for President Nixon’s 1972 “Toast to Peace” with China’s Premier Zhou Enlai. Stone says, Schramsberg’s sparkling wines have been served at official State functions by every U.S. Presidential administration since.
Joseph Phelps Vineyards – The setting for Joseph Phelps winery is a majestic conundrum of vineyard vistas, glorious sunshine on rolling hills, beautiful courtyards throughout the property, wine tasting amid the caves, and blossoming walkways covered with canopies of trees and punctuated with quaint sitting areas. Joseph Phelps was running one of the largest construction companies in the U.S. in the 1960s, but he was enamored with the beauty and bountiful harvest of Napa Valley. After contemplating a career change to follow his dream Joseph Phelps bought the 600-acre Connolly cattle ranch in Spring Valley, in 1973, and began planting vineyards. The winery was completed in 1974 and that same year the first Syrah was made, the first grapes were crushed at the new facility and the first Insignia was produced. At the time, the period was marked with unparalleled activity, creativity, ingenuity, entrepreneurship and risk-taking. It put Joe Phelps on the map of top Napa Valley wine producers and his winery is one of the top must-see properties in the region. Dot be surprised with some sticker shock but you’re buying quality, as most wine enthusiasts know.
Bravante – Another must-see, must-taste on your Wine Country tour when in Napa Valley. Bravante’s wine is very distinct in separating itself as a winery that can hold it’s own with some of the best, even as a very down to earth winery. Bravante’s signature uniqueness includes the personalization of a boutique winery that you rarely get in Napa these days. Bravante provides one of the very best wine tours and tasting experiences you can enjoy all over Napa. It understands that good wineries aren’t just about branding and ratings, but more about the experience and unique experience and personalization for every visitor with high quality palette pleasing from every bottle of wine. The 2005 Simpatico now called the Reserve (Flagship Wine) and the 2007 Estate Howell Mountain Cabernet, Cabernet Reserve, Cabernet Franc and Merlot and taste and finish as some of the very best. The year 2007 was widely known as a great year for reds ,but Bravante’s wine is very distinct from all others. With many varietals, the 2009 Sauvignon Blanc features a well-balanced floral scent and creamy peach tasty finish.
Domaine Careneros – Make sure to also stop at the ethereal mansion, winery estate and vineyards with one of the best rose sparkling wine in Napa Valley. It provides the most spectacular winery styling and layout., including rolling hills and sweeping vistas full of grape vines blooming luscious grapes to make the perfect wines. The outdoor seating is reminiscent to a chateau in the countryside of France for the perfect Parisian outdoor café-style wine-tasting experience.
Michael Mondavie Family Estate – With its charming tasting room and spacious back patios, this is the perfect winery to start a day of wine tasting in Napa. The small, intimate vineyard and tasting room makes this a more relaxing spot to sample wines, and a great contrast to Artesa just up the hill. The winery boasts a spellbinding chardonnay with tropical hints that has become a traveler’s favorite. It’s much less commercialized than other wineries in the area, so it won’t be hard to get to you tasting. Exceptional sommeliers here are personable, enticing, welcoming to all ages 21 and up and low-pressure.
Del Dotto Vineyards – One of our Must-Do Activities and a winery not far from downtown Napa at the base of Atlas Peak that features one of the earliest surviving caves excavated by Chinese laborers in the late 19th century.
Frog’s Leap Winery – Don’t let the name fool you. Frog’s Leap may be quite fun, but the wines are some of the most tantalizing varietals you’ll find. Located in Rutherford, Frog’s Leap was founded in 1981 by John Williams and one of the first organic wineries in the modern era.
Get a True Taste of Napa Valley With Best Vacations Ever
How to choose and where to start amid the 400-plus wineries? That’s the dilemma you’ll face. But again, that’s the glory of Napa Valley repeat visits – every experience is different and unique. The same holds true for golf aficionados research Napa wineries before your trip and find the most glorious architectural splendors or the most popular tasting varietals and experiences you hope to accomplish on your first trip to Napa. If a repeat visit, find ones that you have yet to see and fall under the top winery categories. But remember, your Best Vacations Ever vacation package gives you the luxury to spend as much time wine tasting as you want, including the famous Wine Train dinner tour through Wine Country. BVE travel provider Preferred Guest Resorts makes sure you have enhanced, customized vacation packages with complimentary accommodations right in the heart of Napa Valley. Learn more about Best Vacation Ever promotional vacation packages by downloading our informative and enticing BVE/PGR videos here on the website home page of bestvacationsever.com. You’ll see just how enhanced your travel will be,and at the lowest possible rates without sacrificing style and indulgence, with PGR’s similarly dedicated and travel devoted third-party properties and strategic preferred partners forged to enhance the travel experience. Promotional vacations not only save you money, but also give you a glorious experience you may otherwise not be able to afford for simple property introductions. Preferred Guest Resorts has spent more than 30 years perfecting enhanced promotional travel for the masses, traveling tens of thousands of happy families every year and teaching travelers home to save thousands on their future travel. So get ready to shut down the laptop, disconnect from stresses push and escape the daily grind for a heart healthy vacation in one of California’s most treasured destinations for cohabitating couples and families alike. Call one of our travel representatives at 800-656-2780 and start planning your most deliciously wonderful, and most affordable, Best Vacations Ever promotional vacation to Napa Valley today!
What is your favorite winery in Napa Valley and why?