Cards Against Humanity, Settlers of Catan, Backgammon, are you ready to get your game on and your wine on this Summer? Here’s a round-up of the best places in the Napa Valley to share a sip of wine and show off your skills at the same time.
CADE Estate Winery, the first organically farmed LEED Gold Certified estate winery in Napa Valley, is not only known for its award winning wine but its incredible views. At an elevation of 1,800 feet, CADE Estate Winery sits high above the fog line on the dramatic slopes of Howell Mountain, just northeast of the town of St. Helena, and blends right in with the impressive landscape, where cultivated vineyard rows meet tall evergreens and native Manzanita trees, all set against a backdrop of staggering Napa Valley vistas for a visitor experience that will not soon be forgotten.
CADE’s majestic views are best taken in while sipping a glass of CADE Sauvignon Blanc on a warm summer afternoon, or a glass of CADE Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon by the enticing fire pit located on the outdoor patio as the weather cools. Whether for a romantic wine tasting for two or a group gathering, CADE’s is the ultimate destination to enjoy world-class wine and spectacular views while playing a classic game of Dominos or Backgammon. www.cadewinery.com
The Carneros Inn
Named among Travel + Leisure’s Top 25 most romantic getaways, The Carneros Inn, a PlumpJack Resort, is the ideal luxury wine country destination with breathtaking vineyard views and five-star amenities. The Carneros Inn is the first full-service resort to be built in Napa in more than 20 years, and the first ever in the world-renowned Carneros wine region. The resort features 86 charming private guest cottages and suites and nightly private luxury Home rentals, each furnished with casual elegance and nestled in a lush garden courtyard with private deck. Innovative dining options at The Carneros Inn, include the architecturally dramatic Hilltop Dining Room, high-end FARM, and The Boon Fly Café, a roadhouse-style public eatery. Adjacent to FARM is the resort’s MARKET where a bounty of gourmet food, deli items and beverages can be found. Create a picnic basket, including a bottle or two of your favorite wine, and head out to the bocce court for a game.
The property also offers outdoor terrace dining and an infinity pool, both with panoramic vineyard views; bar and award-winning spa facilities; and, most importantly, first-class service delivered with warmth and ease. www.thecarnerosinn.com
Ehlers Estate, a vineyard-focused, socially responsible certified organic and biodynamic winerylocated on an historic winegrowing estate in the northern part of Napa Valley’s acclaimed St. Helena appellation, is a favorite among locals who prefer its “off the beaten path” location. The charming 43-acre winery is a contiguous estate in the classical French style – capable of producing wines with the power, grace and sophistication of the great Bordeaux houses. Ehlers’ olive grove, a picturesque courtyard adjacent to the winery, includes a bocce court for guests to enjoy while sipping the winery’s signature blends.
Under the leadership of Winemaker Kevin Morrisey, the Ehlers Estate vineyard, which is the source of exceptional Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Sauvignon Blanc, is farmed with strict adherence to organic and biodynamic farming standards, helping to preserve the purity and character of the estate’s fruit, leading to stellar wines reflecting an authentic sense of place. No chemical herbicides, pesticides, or synthetic fertilizers are used on these pristine vineyards. www.ehlersestate.com
Hamel Family Wines
Hamel Family Wines is an exciting new addition to Sonoma Valley, the birthplace of California’s famed wine industry. The 7,500-square-foot winery features limited-production premium wines from estate-grown, organically farmed vineyards, led by two generations of the Hamel family – vintners Pam and George F. Hamel, Jr., managing director George F. Hamel III, and winemaker John B. Hamel II. Renowned winemaker Martha McClellan serves as winemaking consultant and respected organic viticulturist Phil Coturri assists with vineyard operations and development.
The extraordinary 124-acre property encompasses a 6,875-square-foot Estate House from which guests can savor panoramic views of the Sonoma Valley while playing a variety of games provided by the winery, such as Cards of Humanity, Blackjack and Janga. The property also includes a 7,500-square-foot winery, and 12,000 square feet of immaculate caves for barrel storage, tours, private dining, and events. www.hamelfamilywines.com
B Cellars Winery
A premium winery and hospitality house, B Cellars relocates this August from Calistoga to an historic property in the heart of Napa Valley’s esteemed Oakville AVA, the first new winery on the Oakville Cross Road in 18 years. The extraordinary new 11.5 acre property is set amongst some of the world’s most celebrated wineries, including Silver Oak, PlumpJack and Rudd, in the district that defines great Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Construction is nearly complete on a state-of-the art winery and tasting room, including more than 15,000-square-feet of original caves. The outdoor spaces include a six-wicket center-pin croquet court for guests to enjoy while sipping the winery’s signature blends.
B Cellars operates a multi-vineyard winemaking strategy, led by winemaker Kirk Venge, to craft exceptional blends procured from Napa Valley’s most desirable vineyard properties, allowing for the blending of matchless varietals to create unique wines with distinct character, depth, and layers of flavors. The winery also produces acclaimed single-vineyard wines, featuring grapes cultivated on prime Napa Valley vineyard sites, including To Kalon, Dr. Crane, Georges III, Star and Stagecoach to name a few. www.bcellars.com