Two of the many types of Napa Valley wines
The Napa Valley is well known throughout the world for its intricate topography that offers many different places to grow different wine grapes. Varieties of wine grown here include Cabernet Sauvignon and Right Bank.
Cabernet Sauvignon was grown from Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc grapes. Hardy and resilient, producing grapes of consistent quality, the “Cab” is one of the most popular wines in the world, and was the most widely planted premium red wine grape in the world for most of the 20th century. First introduced to California in the 1870s, this grape reached its full potential with American oak and the gentle climate of Napa Valley. The California Cabernet truly came into its own when an American Cab beat out French Bordeaux wines in the famous “Judgment of Paris,” a blind taste test in France.
“Right Bank” actually refers to a location in France — northern Bordeaux, on the right bank of the Dordogne. This is a region of clay soil that gets less wind from the sea than other parts of Bordeaux. The wines grown in this region are red wines that tend to be Merlot-based or Cabernet Franc. This style of wine is also called “Red Libourne.” Right Bank red wines in America are grown in place with analogous terroir, from similar stock. Many vineyards also have their own distinct blends, such as Anderson Conn Valley Vineyard’s “Eloge.”
Joining a wine club is a great way to try Napa Valley wines, especially those that offer wines you haven’t heard of before. Discover something new and impress your friends the next time they visit. (Note: this won’t work if they’re in the club too.)
Great Napa Valley wines from a St. Helena winery
Some of the best California wines come from Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards in Napa Valley, just south of Howell Mountain. A 10-minute drive from downtown St. Helena, Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards produces world-class wines at affordable prices. The microclimate of Conn Valley is cooler than many other parts of the valley, although warmer than Howell Mountain itself, so the grapes grown here are closest to mountain grapes. At the vineyard, you’ll have the chance to meet the owners and wine-makers and taste excellent wine stored in a cave, and to sample such wines as the 2009 Right Bank. Ruby red with purple at the edge, this wine has a cassis aroma with notes of espresso, cedar and black pepper. With its full-bodied mouthfeel, rounded tannins and taste of black fruit and chocolate, this is a wine to cherish.
Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards has been owned and operated by the Anderson family since 1983. Anderson’s wines are sold online and in five locations in Napa Valley, and many other locations nationwide. By ordering six bottles or more per year, you can join their wine club. This will get you a discount on many of their finest wines.