One of the absolute best things about living in the Napa Valley is the access to fabulous food and wine. Seriously, moving back after college has done absolutely nothing for my waistline. It’s just so hard to say no to brunches, lunches, and wine tasting trips. And then, of course, friends want to partake. I have to be hospitable, no? This is what I like to call “playing tourist”. Because, sometimes, locals and natives like to learn about their home, too!
A couple of weeks ago, Chef and I decided to go to brunch in St. Helena. I’d always meant to try French Blue, but it became Archetype before I had the chance. Read about that here. So we popped up to Archetype for a delightful brunch, complete with wine and tasty food. Seriously, you should try it.
After brunch, we decided to partake in an impromptu wine tasting. Where to go? Well, St. Helena is smack in the middle of the Spring Mountain AVA, so after a quick Yelp search, we ventured toward Spring Mountain Vineyard. SMV is by appointment only, but we were lucky that they had room for us in a tasting starting shortly after we called. We parked and walked past the ginormous greenhouse that was filled with flowers, trees, and veggies. Once our host, Ish, saw us, he grabbed two glasses of wine to greet us with. Best welcoming ever! Ish told us to relax for a few moments, as we were waiting for a few more appointments to show up before the tasting commenced.
The tasting features four of SMV’s wines: Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon and my personal favorite, Elivette, their Bordeaux blend. On a few occasions, we
went back for seconds compared the previous wine to the current pouring. We chatted about wine, restaurants, and organic pest-removal techniques for about an hour with Ish and three other couples before our tasting was over. I loved how cozy the tasting was despite the grand views and huge property. It was very much like a conversation with new friends as we inquired about the winemaker’s techniques, gave restaurant recommendations to visitors and compared our favorite varietals from the tasting. I also loved SMV’s garden! Serious veggie envy over here.
If you’re looking to visit Spring Mountain Vineyard in St. Helena, tastings are held daily by appointment only from 10:30-3:30 and are $40 per guest (but waived with a purchase of $125 or more per guest or Wine Club sign-up).To get in touch with Spring Mountain Vineyard, visit their website here or send them a tweet at @springmtnvyd.
I absolutely plan on returning to Spring Mountain Vineyard with friends. And I definitely plan on continuing to play tourist in my backyard, the Napa Valley!