Benziger Family Winery hosts daily tram tours that depart on the half-hour from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., with the exception of noon. Imagery Estate Winery hosts tastings Monday–Friday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Located in Napa Valley, Honig Vineyard & Winery produces flavorsome sauvignon blancs and cabernet sauvignons that can be found on restaurant wine lists across the country. Visitors to the winery’s fancy tasting room have the chance to sample five of Honig’s delicious wines. Sommeliers and thirsty Langoliers can sniff, taste, and carefully dissect the potable properties of the Rutherford sauvignon blanc, a 2008 vintage that starts fruity and ends with a crisp, minerally finish, as well as the 2006 Honig cabernet sauvignon, which features blackberry, cherry, and plum flavors developed over 18 months in an American oak barrel, just like old-timey cowboy hobos. The remaining three samples include the 2008 Honig Late Harvest sauvignon blanc—a refreshing dessert wine aged in new French oak barrels with lemony and grapefruity hints—Honig’s single vineyard cab, and a library selection.
Eagles Trace's vintage-producing veterans lead parties of up to eight connoisseurs into the depths of their winery, housed within the stone-hewn walls of an underground cave. During the 90- to 120-minute tour, guests taste up to four varieties from the collection, swirling and sniffing their sample before determining whether they got the merlot, the cabernet sauvignon, or cough syrup. Groups then enter into the caves to taste one of the winery's creations straight from the barrel, where it is kept at a constant 60 degrees–62 degrees by the cool subterranean air. At the tour's conclusion, visitors adopt their favorite bottle to take home, such as the cuddly 2005 Latitude 38, a bordeaux-style blend that is house-trained and boasts flavors of blackberries, black currant, and plums.
The open wine tasting salon Taste at Oxbow aims to expand palates with an eclectic menu of wines chosen to accompany artisanal cheeses and gourmet food items. Energy-efficient fixtures illuminate the salon's olive and merlot-toned walls, which owe their hues to chemical-free paints.
Now that eating on an ordinary table or atop a stack of Chinese acrobats seem horribly passé, adventurous foodies are seeking the next unconventional dining experience. Today's Groupon puts a little motion under your meal with two gourmet dinners on the Napa Valley Wine Train for $99 (a $198 value for dinner, $188 value for lunch). Treat yourself and a loved one to a three-hour ride through Napa Valley on an antique locomotive engine, accompanied by a delicious gourmet meal in lieu of the traditional mysterious murder.
Cornerstone Cellars piles oenophiles' palates with tastings of wine and cheese in an elegant tasting room adorned with eclectic artwork and TVs. Drinking duos will imbibe the winemakers' vintage Stepping Stone Rocks! red and white nectars, carefully comparing the French-inspired amalgamations of varietals, aromas, and Parisian mime tears. A smattering of cheeses complements each wine's unique flavors, allowing guests to experiment with pairings until they find the combination that unlocks wine's hidden notes of bacon. After emptying glasses and polishing off plates, pairs receive bottles of Stepping Stone Rocks! red and white to sip at home or use to strengthen core muscles by balancing them on their heads.