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Old 11-08-2010, 03:34 PM
 
61 posts, read 70,938 times
Reputation: 23
Default Wine country

My Gf and I plan to go to Napa this saturday for the day and hang out. How much is it usually to go wine tasting? Anywhere in particular to go?
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Old 11-08-2010, 04:53 PM
 
Location: Newark, Ca
1,327 posts, read 2,013,719 times
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There are literally hundreds of wineries in the Napa/Sonoma area, so it can be really hard to give recommendations on which ones to visit. You could spend the entire day there and only make it to a handful of wineries. Your best bet for getting to experience as many wineries as you can would probably be to just drive up/down HWY 29 (St. Helena Hwy) and make stops along the way. One of my favorite wineries along this route is V. Sattui Winery. There are just so many wineries to choose from and it can be very daunting. I'd probably try to get ahold of a Wine Country map that lists the different wineries in the area. You can pick one up almost anywhere when you get there and most people working the counters in the wineries are more than willing to give advice on where to go so you can have the best visit.

My wife and I have gone wine tasting in the Napa area twice now and in all honesty, it's waaaaayyyy overpriced. Most places charge at least $10 for a tasting and many are $15-20+. Then they still want you to buy the wine that you've just tasted! The scenery is amazing. It really is a beautiful area. All in all, my wife and I have had a great time when we've gone, but we just tell ourselves beforehand that it's a special occasion and we're expecting to spend a bunch of money. One way you could save money is to just purchase one tasting at each place you visit. My wife and I always do this and just share. I highly recommend this.

On a side note, my wife and I have found the Livermore Valley to be a much better value than the Napa area and we are even members of Concannon Winery in Livermore. The area isn't as scenic as Napa, but is still a nice area nevertheless. Another area to check out sometime is Lockeford, near Lodi.
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Old 11-08-2010, 07:18 PM
 
Location: Hills & Hollers of the Aux Arcs
18,964 posts, read 15,734,561 times
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Guess it's a sign of issue of age but there was a time in my life when wine tasting was free. Of course, that was before ill-bred entitlement types hit in droves, took advantage of it and ruined it for the rest of us.
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Old 11-08-2010, 08:24 PM
 
291 posts, read 538,002 times
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Some wineries in Livermore still offer free wine tasting, one example is Bent Creek Winery. The majority of them charge $5 however, but Concannon offers free wine wine tours on the weekends. You can find more info here:
Wineries, Wine Tasting, Dining, Tours, Weddings & More! | Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association

Sorry I don't have any info on Napa to share.
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Old 11-08-2010, 11:35 PM
 
Location: Central Bay Area, CA as of Jan 2010...but still a proud Texan from Houston!
7,370 posts, read 4,174,243 times
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If you have money to spend I would suggest this

Napa Valley Wine Train | Enjoy a True Gourmet Napa Valley Dinner in an Antique Rail Car
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Old 11-09-2010, 03:44 PM
 
20,162 posts, read 12,592,863 times
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Forget that overpriced worthless POS area Napa. It was good in the 1970's and 1980's and part of the 90's. Hit the Gold Country wineries in the California foothills. They are just as close to Sactown as Napa. IMHO the Wine train is way overrated been on it several times for business dinners.

The foothills is the way Napa and Sonoma used to be.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:03 PM
 
Location: Central Bay Area, CA as of Jan 2010...but still a proud Texan from Houston!
7,370 posts, read 4,174,243 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bulldogdad View Post
Forget that overpriced worthless POS area Napa. It was good in the 1970's and 1980's and part of the 90's. Hit the Gold Country wineries in the California foothills. They are just as close to Sactown as Napa. IMHO the Wine train is way overrated been on it several times for business dinners.

The foothills is the way Napa and Sonoma used to be.
What makes it overrated? I have not been on it but plan on doing it when summer returns. I think it is worth trying once. I watched a travel show that featured it and it looked like it would be worth doing at least once.
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Old 11-10-2010, 10:26 AM
 
20,162 posts, read 12,592,863 times
Reputation: 17173
Quote:
Originally Posted by TVC15 View Post
What makes it overrated? I have not been on it but plan on doing it when summer returns. I think it is worth trying once. I watched a travel show that featured it and it looked like it would be worth doing at least once.
Again it was my opinion. I would rather spend the money on better food in a better restaurant. Riding up and back a 15 mile section of track at ten miles an hour on the valley floor eating in a crowded dining car is not my idea of a good time. The food was nothing special. The only thing I enjoyed was getting lit on the wine.

Take it for what it is worth. If you have never been give it a shot.
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Old 11-10-2010, 03:17 PM
 
Location: New York City
488 posts, read 436,166 times
Reputation: 368
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstnghu2 View Post
There are literally hundreds of wineries in the Napa/Sonoma area, so it can be really hard to give recommendations on which ones to visit. You could spend the entire day there and only make it to a handful of wineries. Your best bet for getting to experience as many wineries as you can would probably be to just drive up/down HWY 29 (St. Helena Hwy) and make stops along the way. One of my favorite wineries along this route is V. Sattui Winery. There are just so many wineries to choose from and it can be very daunting. I'd probably try to get ahold of a Wine Country map that lists the different wineries in the area. You can pick one up almost anywhere when you get there and most people working the counters in the wineries are more than willing to give advice on where to go so you can have the best visit.

My wife and I have gone wine tasting in the Napa area twice now and in all honesty, it's waaaaayyyy overpriced. Most places charge at least $10 for a tasting and many are $15-20+. Then they still want you to buy the wine that you've just tasted! The scenery is amazing. It really is a beautiful area. All in all, my wife and I have had a great time when we've gone, but we just tell ourselves beforehand that it's a special occasion and we're expecting to spend a bunch of money. One way you could save money is to just purchase one tasting at each place you visit. My wife and I always do this and just share. I highly recommend this.

On a side note, my wife and I have found the Livermore Valley to be a much better value than the Napa area and we are even members of Concannon Winery in Livermore. The area isn't as scenic as Napa, but is still a nice area nevertheless. Another area to check out sometime is Lockeford, near Lodi.
I second V Sattui BIG TIME. Love that place ! When I think of Sonoma/Napa, I always think of that place. Great place to taste wines, buy wine, and have a picnic (They have great food and a picnic area). V Sattui is one of my visions of paradise. Awesome place. There is also a Taylor's Refresher on 29 (St Helena I believe), GREAT burger joint with awesome sweet potato fries and amazing shakes.
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Old 11-10-2010, 05:32 PM
 
Location: South Korea
5,245 posts, read 6,569,288 times
Reputation: 2831
The Bonny Doon winery which is near Santa Cruz is free for tastings. They don't really have any vineyards, they're just a little wine factory in the wooded hills with a small tasting room. I would imagine that there would still be some small wineries in the Napa/Sonoma area that are free, I know one I went to that was east of Mendocino was free, can't remember the name though.
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