Explore Howell Mountain Wineries in 2 Days

  • Itineraries
  • by WINECOUNTRY COLLECTIVE
  • on SEPTEMBER 28, 2015
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Itineraries

Explore Howell Mountain Wineries in 2 Days

By WineCountry Collective September 28, 2015

Rising between 1,400 to 2,500 feet above sea level, Napa Valley’s Howell Mountain has become a legend in the wine world. Its porous, rocky, iron-rich soils lend themselves to the making of bold, concentrated, and refined wines. And, while unique microclimates across the hillsides allow for a variety of grapes to grow, this area is particularly great for cabernet sauvignon. A two-day tour of Howell Mountain’s wineries allows wine enthusiasts to explore some of the most beautiful, distinct vineyards in the region, while tasting standout cabernet sauvignon and other red Bordeaux varietals.

Day 1: Upper Howell Mountain Wineries

On the Peak

Black Sears
Photo Courtesy of Yelp: Black Sears

Black Sears
2610 Summit Lake Drive
Angwin, CA 94508
(707) 889-1243
Reservations: Required

Black Sears is the highest vineyard on the mountain and offers spectacular vistas of the often fog shrouded oak forests and vineyards below. The winery produces organically and biodynamically grown wine varieties including cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, and zinfandel under the Black Sears label.

Insider Tip: If you have the time, schedule a tour of the grounds and the caves while there. The view from the peak is worth the trip.

Rich and Spicy

Outpost Estate Winery
Photo Courtesy of Yelp: Outpost Estate Winery

Outpost Estate Winery
2075 Summit Lake Drive
Angwin, CA 94508
(707) 965-1718
Reservations: Required

Located at 2,200 feet, Outpost Estate Winery makes the most of the hard, rocky, iron-laden Howell Mountain soil to produce rich, spicy wines. The winery uses organic, sustainable farming practices and produces distinctive wine varieties that are never filtered or fined.

Insider Tip: One advantage of visiting Outpost Estate Winery is that tastings often come with a bit of wine history and vineyard farming practices. Try the Outpost Estate Zinfandel available only at the winery.

Hidden Treasure

Summit Lake Vineyards & Winery
Photo Courtesy of Facebook: Summit Lake Vineyards & Winery

Summit Lake Vineyards & Winery
2000 Summit Lake Drive
Angwin, CA 94508
(707) 965-2488
Reservations: Required

Summit Lake Vineyards & Winery is everything a small, family run farm should be—hospitable, laid-back and always ready to make guests feel at home. Noted for its fine zinfandel and cabernet sauvignon wines, Summit Lake Vineyards and Winery offers a slice of Howell Mountain living not to be missed. It may be off the beaten track, but it is definitely worth the time and effort.

Insider Tip: Summit Lake Vineyards & Winery is often described as intimate and their tastings often occur around the owner’s dinner table, conducted by extended family members.

Day 2: Central and South Howell Mountain

Italian Roots

Cimarossa Winery
Photo Courtesy of Facebook: Cimarossa Winery

Cimarossa Winery
1185 Friesen Drive
Angwin, CA 94508
(707) 307-3130
Reservations: Required

This small, family-owned winery boasts a varied topography from flat to tiered vineyards. With a decidedly Italian leaning, the winery focuses mainly on cabernet sauvignon, sauvignon blanc, and tasty olive oil produced from the 1,200 olive trees planted throughout the property. The staff at Cimarossa enjoys showing off their grounds and vineyards, where this multi-tiered property offers great views and more than enough hospitality to make it well worth the trip.

Insider Tip: The winery’s signature Rive di Cimarossa 100% Cabernet Sauvignon is a good choice.

A Nod to Nature

O’Shaughnessy Estate Winery
1100 Friesen Drive
Angwin, CA 94508
(707) 965-2898
Reservations: Required

O’Shaughnessy Estate Winery sits on a 100-acre hillside property and has two separate vineyards planted with 29 acres of cabernet sauvignon and six acres of cabernet franc, petit verdot, merlot, malbec, carmenere, and St. Macaire. The property features an eco-sensitive stone tiered glass winery, an 11,000 square foot cave, olive trees, as well as rosemary and lavender bushes.

Insider Tip: Guests often use the words “stunning and unique“ when describing the winery’s barrel room and caves attended by the knowledgeable and accommodating staff. Be sure to ask about the winery’s “unique” winemaking process. Their cabernet sauvignons are always popular favorites.

A Mountain Leed(er)

Cade Estate Winery
Photo Courtesy of Cade Estate Winery

Cade Estate Winery
360 Howell Mountain Road S
Angwin, CA 94508
(707) 965.2746
Reservations: Required
When Cade Estate Winery principals, Gavin Newsom and John Conover, set out to open a winery, they took extra care to create a property that would not only produce fine, organically grown wines but be environmentally sensitive as well. The grounds feature the trademark Howell Mountain vistas, a wine terrace, naturally insulated caves, a fermentation room, and the first LEED Gold Star winery in the Napa Valley. A visit to Cade Estate Winery is an education in sustainable winemaking at its best. No lack of detail was overlooked during the construction of the facilities to incorporate the most up-to-date and environmentally conscious building practices and farming techniques.

Insider Tip: Try the CADE Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon to experience Howell Mountain cab at its best.

Conclusion

Eager to start your trip to taste these mountain wines? Start exploring more Napa Valley wineries today!