Category Archives: Wine Adventure Napa

Wine Adveture Napa


This is Gerald Murphy, super friend, like my older brother but not quite as smart or financially savvy. Huge RedWings fan, I can’t fault a person for that. They waited a long time for their team to have some glory in the late 90′s. G is like my brother, but he’s more like the

Enrico Ciccone

of older brothers. I love you man.    

Wine Adventure Napa


This is a bit of the view from up on Pritchard Hill.
Where Chapellet grows their grapes, and makes their wines, in a tree shaded pyramid in the eastern mountains of the Napa Valley.
It was paradise up there, didn’t think Gerald’s beater Park Ave would make it up the drive way.
They took us up to the top of the property in some Swiss Army vehicle, opened all their current releases, and a bottle of 76 Cab Sauv.
How many people have tasted Napa CAb from the 70′s, Sommelier membership has it’s priviledges.
This photo faces north, to the west is the entire valley, hard to say if I’ve been to a more beautiful place.    

Wine Adventure Napa

The legendary Chateau Montelena.
I have adored their wines for as long as my palate can remember. Their Chardonnay won first place at the legendary Paris tasting of 76.
On my visit to the winery we missed the turn and drove on empty through wildfires from the day before.
Destiny prevailed, because I was late to the appointment, the private party let out, and in addition to the 97 Cab Sauv, I got to try some 79 Chard. But only after asking three times for a tasting note or something from the staff that tried it.
They had to shovel us back into the car.
The fruit was gone, but some beautiful toasted nuts, wet stone, great acidity, and the finish on this wine. I wil forever have a soft spot in my heart for their wines. As if I didn’t before I visited the property.    

Wine Adventure Napa

This is one of my best friends Gerald Murphy, a well traveled foody and huge Red Wings fan that’s now GM of the Left Bank Menlo Park.
We visited Groth Winery in Oakville and spent some quality time with Suzanne Groth, talked about life in Cali, the family, the wine, and the winery being a means to keeping the family together in a ridiculously expensive environment. I really appreciated their hositality, and their wines are top notch. The 03 Oakville Cab Sauv really killed it at a recent tasting.    

Wine Adventure Napa

I have been feeling guilty for not being on top of blogging lately but it’s hard to balance work, winemaking(a link will be coming shortly for the new winery), vacations to wine producing regions, tastings, remembering to bring my notes home, and family time. So I considered drawing off a pool of photos from wine trips and creating a whole new section of the blog, wine adventures.
This is me in the vineyards of Chimney Rock in Napa, Stags leap District to be exact. This was july so no ripe grapes to poach, and it happened to be 114 degrees, this was during a heat wave while I was there in 06.
The first person I met in the valley, was a mason that worked on a lot of wineries, and was pretty upset about a dress code at the golf course where the winery stands now, so he hated the winery, or something like that, yes he was a bit drunk at lunch but we did eat at the bar.
I in fact really like their wines, the entire portfolio, although there are some vintage differences, but thats a truth every winery has to contend with. Pound for pound, which generally translates to bang for the buck, their wines really have a lot to offer, the more expensive wines have a lot of depth. Seek them out.