Friday, April 10, 2009

Napa Valley, Part I

Jonathan had an off-Friday (yep, I've gotten a full week behind), and since we're going to be apart for a month, we decided to spend some time together by going up to Napa Valley. It's about an hour forty-five to get to the Valley, but we decided to drive up the entire thing, so it took about another half hour after that to reach the top, where we entered the Sterling Vineyards. We chose this one because it boasts having the best views of its vineyards and the whole valley.Plus, it has a ride, LoL. You get to take a gondola up like 300 feet or so (but the trip is longer than that, of course, since you have to go at an angle), and then tour the winery at the top!They also have some centuries-old bells that chime every fifteen minutes.It was a self-paced tour, with placards to read, artifacts to examine, motion-sensor television clips, and other things to look at. We were actually rather puzzled as some people just passed by us, flying through the tour.We learned a ton. The process is rather fascinating, particularly the differences that go into processing the whites versus the reds.The patio at the end of the tour offered another spectacular view. The only downfall was that since it's early in the season, there weren't a lot of vines and stuff yet.After the tour there's a complimentary tasting, where you get five wines to try (we actually got six, not sure if we were special or what, hehe). I only cared for one of them, and that's the kind we bought for a souvenir bottle.The other ones that we both sampled include Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Malvasia Bianca (the winner in my book), and another I can't remember (and the sheet is back in California, so there's no finding out for a while, LoL). JB also had a Cabernet Sauvignon while I went with a Zinfandel (and we both had different final wines that I don't remember, either).

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