Day Trip to the Napa Valley Part Two

Let’s see, I left off where we headed for Dean and Deluca for lunch. It’s a great place to get a sandwich, pasta or other salad or many other lunch items. It is also a pretty nice specialty market too. (part one is here)

It was starting to rain a little so after we ate we headed around the corner to Beaulieu Vineyards. As it shares a parking lot with the Rutherford Grill it was a challenge finding parking. Eventually we did, however and headed for the Reserve room where we had an appointment.

They were set up and ready to pour us some wine when we got there. The Reserve room is nice because it is not very crowded, just the four of us and one other couple. Along with the wine they have many gift items for sale too. We had four wines, the first was the 2006 BV Tapestry Red Blend. I have not always been a fan of the Tapestry but this was quite pleasant. It is drinking well now but I don’t think I would buy it to cellar. Most of the older Tapestry wines I have had did not age well. Next we had the 2008 Georges de LaTour, this had lighter body than previous vintages I have tasted but very elegant. An excellent wine.

We then tasted two different Cabernets, the 2005 BV Reserve Clone 4 and the 2005 BV Reserve Clone 6. Both are big structured Cabernet Sauvignons from Rutherford with big tannins and plenty of flavor.

That pretty well wrapped up Beaulieu Vineyards and we headed over to the Silverado Trail and went south to Yountville for Cliff Lede Vineyards (pronounced as lady). This is in the Stags Leap area.

Cliff Lede Vineyards was once S. Anderson Vineyards, which in addition to Cabernet Sauvignon had some sparkling wines. However, in 2002 Cliff Lede bought the property and in 2005 built a new winery, changed the name and dropped the sparkling wines. One thing of interest is instead of naming the winery blocks on a number or letter system like everyone else, they are named after rock tunes. It makes for a very interesting winery map.

We had a reserved table in the main tasting room all set up with glasses and rather than going up to the bar the wines were brought to us to taste. Comfortable and cozy right in front of the fireplace, although it wasn’t lit yet. I neglected to get the name of the man who served us but he really knew the winery and the wines. He sat down with us and gave us great background information as we tried each wine.

We had the 2008 Stags Leap Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2008 Lonely Wizard, another Stags Leap Cabernet Sauvignon blend and the 2009 Breggo Cellars Anderson Valley Pinot Noir. They were all real good wines but by this time we were in a little bit of a hurry as John needed to get back to Stockton for a meeting and Dave and I had to be back for a tasting of Portuguese wines. We really didn’t give the wines the attention they deserved. We will have to stop at Cliff Lede Vineyards again and spend a little more time exploring the winery and their wines. Maybe make it our first stop next time as their wines are deserving of a better description.

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