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- 3 / 14A CHIC DRINKING SCENEFailla’s wines are mostly from Sonoma Coast vineyards, but the winery itself is located in St. Helena, in the Napa Valley. This place is tricked out with not one but two country-cool tasting facilities: the ultra-cozy wood-paneled “Tasting Lodge,” and a private lounge in the winery’s underground caves.PHOTO COURTESY OF FAILLA
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- 5 / 14LOVER OF BIG REDS?Medlock-Ames is one of the great ‘hangs’ in California Wine Country, especially during their summer concert series (hosted on Sundays). Don’t miss the velvety Alexander Valley reds and their handsome tasting room.PHOTO COURTESY OF GEORGE ROSE/MEDLOCK AMES
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- 7 / 14PICNICS FIT FOR INSTAGRAMLocated at the convergence of Napa and Sonoma and within striking distance of San Francisco, Scribe has the whole ‘gather ‘round the communal table’ thing down pat. They host a variety of events—typically hosted by It-Restaurants and attended by young, good-looking people—and the vibe is that of a supremely well-appointed picnic.PHOTO COURTESY OF SCRIBE
- 8 / 14VISIT TWO OF NAPA'S OGSSmith-Madrone gives you Stuart and Charles Smith, two Napa originals making some of the best Cabernet in the Valley (without the ego and corresponding price tag). Visiting this farm (and these farmers) is like a journey to Dagobah to meet Yoda.PHOTO COURTESY OF SMITH-MADRONE
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- 10 / 14CHARDONNAY TO SILENCE THE HATERSAll California Chardonnay is buttery, oaky pineapple juice, right? So wrong, actually. In fact, if you’re into crisp, nervous, brightly acidic white wines, the old school Napa landmark, Stonyhill, is for you. They do great dry Rieslings and Gewürztraminers along with their Chablis-inspired chards.
PHOTO COURTESY OF STONYHILL WINERY
- 11 / 14CLOSER THAN BURGUNDYLike a trip to another era. The moss-covered stone fortress of Chateau Montelena was built in the late-1800s and now serves as the label’s tasting room (their Chardonnay triumphed over French rivals in the famed 1976 “Paris Tasting,” and their cabernets remain highly sought after by collectors). This is the California equivalent of visiting a storied château in Bordeaux.PHOTO COURTESY OF CHATEAU MONTELENA
- 12 / 14A TRULY HISTORIC PICKHanzell Vineyard’s founder James Zellerbach was a key figure in the post-Prohibition renaissance in California wine. The Chardonnays and Pinots are reference-point wines.PHOTO COURTESY OF HANZELL VINEYARD
- 13 / 14SCHEDULE A FARM VISITBona fide eccentric and ex-Texan Lee Hudson foreswore the family oil business in favor of a life in agriculture. His eponymous vineyard has been a coveted source of grapes for dozens of notable winemakers, but that’s just the beginning: the property is also home to olive groves, pigs, and chickens.
PHOTO COURTESY OF HUDSON RANCH
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