Silverado Trail Wineries: A 2-Day Tasting Guide

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Silverado Trail, one of the two thoroughfares through Napa Valley, is in many ways a road less traveled. This eastern route hugs the hillside of the Valley, and is home to dozens of wineries. The Silverado Trail is the place to spend a day or two (or three) visiting some of the best family-owned wineries in Napa.

Day 1

1
Wineries / Napa

Reynolds Family Winery

After leaving his dentistry practice to pursue his wine passion full-time, Steve Reynolds, along with wife Suzy, essentially became a self-taught winemaker. Today, Reynolds Family Winery focuses on small-production vintages of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Sauvignon Blanc. Visit their elegant tasting room and sample their playfully irreverent current releases while enjoying the beautiful, serene hillside grounds.

Insider Tip

Ask about the playful “Naughty Racy” red, a surprising blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot.

Directions

Located 5 miles north of downtown Napa. Take Silverado Trail north for 5 miles. The winery is on the right.

Details
2
Wineries / Napa

Hagafen Cellars

Hagafen Cellars is one of the Napa Valley’s few producers of Kosher wine, offering wines for varying tastes in their down-to-earth, cozy tasting room. A wide range of styles including Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, Pinot Noir, sparkling wines, and late-harvest dessert wines are produced, providing dynamic tastings served in the intimate tasting room on the Mediterranean style patio. While sipping a glass of the sparkling Brut Cuveé, take a moment to enjoy the artwork on the walls, which includes works by co-owner Irit. When the air gets playful, a game of large-format Jenga or Yahtzee is on call.

Insider Tip

Ask for a side-by-side tasting of the winery’s two labels, Hagafen and Prix, to compare Ernie’s two different takes on the same varieties, like the 2013 Hagafen Napa Valley Merlot and the 2010 Prix Hanna Vineyard Block 4 Merlot.

Directions

From Reynolds Family Winery, turn right onto Silverado Trail. Drive 0.6 miles. The winery is on the right.

Details
3
Wineries / Napa

Darioush Winery

Founded in 1997 by Darioush Khaledi and his wife Shahpar, Iranian-born Darioush first learned about winemaking from his father when he was a child. The property is as stunning as the wines they serve—the Persian architecture and grounds are difficult to miss in the Napa Valley countryside. With an eye for detail and a focus on luxury, Darioush strives to make his guests feel like royalty, both in the grand scheme and in the small details—the award-winning Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are often served with a satisfying palate cleanse of roasted pistachios. The experimental label, Duel, tries out unexpected blends, and the results can be irresistible; ask if the 2013 Duel Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon is being poured.

Insider Tip

Visit the gift shop, which offers an array of high-end lifestyle items, including hard-to-find Persian goods.

Directions

From Hagafen Cellars, turn right onto Silverado Trail. Drive 0.3 miles. The winery is on the right.

Details

Day 2

4
Wineries / Napa

Signorello Vineyards

Signorello Estate was founded by the Signorello family in 1977. Originally, the family sold their grapes to existing wineries, but after a plentiful Chardonnay harvest in 1985, they created their first wine. The family has made their own wine ever since, and the initial winery structure serves today as the tasting room. With Ray Signorello, Jr. at the helm, Signorello Estate crafts estate wines made from the Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Syrah grown on the hillside vineyards. The tasting experience is hosted by a wine ambassador who leads a small group through a short tour of the vineyard before a poolside-seated tasting commences, accompanied by small bites.

Insider Tip

Be sure to ask about the Padrone and Hope blends—named for late founders Ray Signorello, Sr. and his wife Mary Helen Hope Signorello.

Directions

From Darioush, turn right onto Silverado Trail. Drive 0.2 miles. The winery is on the right.

Details
5
Wineries / Napa

Robert Sinskey Vineyards

Robert Sinskey Vineyards was founded by Bob Sinskey, and is currently run by his son Robert. Robert’s wife, Maria, is the chef and culinary director on the property, and the result is a lovely pairing—in more ways than one. This charming tasting room focuses on the marriage of food and wine, and all wine tastings include a food pairing for a harmonious and intentional blend of flavors. Taste through a daily selection of wines that may include unique favorites such as the Abraxas—a Riesling, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, and Gewürtztraminer blend. But ask to try the Vin Gris, a popular rosé made from Pinot Noir, and a favorite of celebrity chef Ina Garten.

Insider Tip

Be sure to peruse the complimentary recipe cards found throughout the tasting room as you taste through the wines.

Directions

From Signorello Estate, turn right onto Silverado Trail. Drive 4.5 miles. The winery is on the right.

Details
6
Wineries / Oakville Rutherford

Miner Family Winery

Founded in 1996 by Dave and Emily Miner, Miner Family Vineyards offers award-winning Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as varieties more unique to the Napa Valley, such as Tempranillo, Sangiovese, and Roussanne. Dave Miner’s love of wine and jazz guitar are celebrated at the winery’s Benedetto Jazz concerts--these annual gatherings celebrate the release of the limited-production Benedetto Series Cabernet Sauvignon, named for guitar craftsman Robert Benedetto. Enjoy the current releases while dropping by the tasting bar, or for a more educational experience, sign up in advance for the cave tour and barrel tasting. Be sure to try the Oracle, a Cab-based blend that was awarded 95 points by Wine Enthusiast Magazine.

Insider Tip

Each wine is poured into custom Riedel stemware. If you’re impressed by any of the glasses, stop by the gift shop to purchase a set to bring home.

Directions

From Robert Sinskey Vineyards, turn right onto Silverado Trail. Drive 3.2 miles. The winery is on the right.

Details

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