Charles Krug Winery 2800 Main St., 1.5 mi. N of town, (800) 682-KRUG, (707) 967-2200. Tasting daily 10:30-5; food pairings by appt.; tour M-F at 10:30 & 3, Sat-Sun at 10:30, & by appt.
In 1858, using a small cider press borrowed from Agoston Haraszthy at the Buena Vista Winery in Sonoma, this winery made the first commercial wines in the Napa Valley. It was also the very first to stop stomping grapes with human feet and start pressing them with machines. Now producing 16 different wines, the winery is noted most for its Cabernet Sauvignons and Sauvignon Blancs.
But it’s not just wine tasting any more. A gigantic new tasting room, strikingly outfitted with wood reclaimed from the property’s huge old redwood tanks, offers traditional bar tastings, plus food pairings at tables on the weekend.
A Reserve Flight Pairing ($95/person; reservations required) concludes with a bittersweet dark chocolate truffle frosted with gold (it is made by the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone located across the street; the institute also tends a large vegetable garden adjacent to the winery parking lot).
Cucina Pairings ($18/small plate + 3-ounce pour; reservations not needed) might include a warm bruschetta with prosciutto and acorn squash paired with a Merlot, or stuffed cremini mushrooms with a Pinot Noir—perhaps just the perfect excursion and experience to enjoy with your Valentine?
All this and picnic tables under a giant oak, too.
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images ©2016 Carole Terwilliger Meyers