NEWS FROM THE VINES: What’s Happening in Napa Valley, Fall 2022

October 7th, 2022


FALL 2022

To see Napa Valley at its most picture-perfect, consider visiting in fall. Daytime highs are next to perfect, and the changing leaves blanket the valley in shades of brilliant yellow, orange, and burgundy. With “crush” season in full swing through early November there’s opportunities for grape smashing, wine blending, and harvest dinners. Here are the can’t-miss events and seasonal hotel offers to put on your radar this fall.

Events & Happenings

The Barrel Blending Experience at Conn Creek Winery

Appointments available Thursday-Monday

Ever dreamed of becoming a winemaker? The Barrel Blending Experience at Conn Creek Winery lets you play winemaker for a day and even take home the fruits of your labor. During the experience, you’ll receive an overview of the Napa Valley AVA, followed by a guided tasting of Cabernet Sauvignon barrel samples, and instructions on blending techniques and strategies. You’ll go home with a custom blend perfectly suited to your tastes.

Price: $150 per person

Bottle Blending Day Camp at Judd’s Hill Winery

Blending is an art as well as a science. If you sign up for the Bottle Blending Camp at Judd’s Hill Winery, you’ll learn how to perfect your Bordeaux-style blends using samples from four barrels of four red varietals. It’s a fun and educational way to hone your palate as a single, couple, or as a group. Reservations for this experience can be made with at least 24-hour notice. If you can’t make it in person, the Bottle Blending Day Camp can even be done remotely over Zoom.

Price: $275 per person

Winemaker For a Day at Raymond Vineyards

Date: Available Wednesday-Monday

During this 90-minute experience, you’ll craft a wine exactly to your preferences and specifications, then fill and cork the bottle and design a bespoke bottle label. It’s a great way to learn about the blending process — with the ultimate reward of bringing home your own custom bottle.

Price: $150 per person

Hotel Happenings

Stanly Ranch, Auberge Resorts Collection

Napa Valley isn’t just for winemakers — it’s also a haven for artists and design mavens. At Stanly Ranch, Auberge Resorts Collection, guests can gain an appreciation for Napa’s artistic side through two new exclusive experiences. The Wine & Design excursion will take participants on a tour of the region’s most architecturally stunning wineries, where they’ll learn about the history and architectural elements behind these striking venues while also tasting a few award-winning wines. At the tour’s end, guests will receive a signed copy of Heather Hebert’s acclaimed book, “The New Architecture of Wine.” For more hands-on instruction, sign up for the Design a Hat with an Artisan experience, which involves spending an evening with the Bay Area’s most coveted milliner, Willee Roberts of Hampui Hats. At Willee’s outdoor studio, guests will participate in a hat-making ceremony using the finest and most sustainable materials — the ultimate Napa Valley souvenir!

Auberge du Soleil, Auberge Resorts Collection

From October 24 to 30th, Auberge du Soleil will celebrate its third annual Champagne Week, a guest-favorite event with daily Champagne tastings hosted by premier and Grand Cru houses and paired dining experiences at the hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant. Expect wines from renowned producers like Krug, Dom Perignon, Laurent Perrier, and Duval Leroy. Indulge in executive chef Robert Curry’s six-course prix fixe tasting menu at The Restaurant for dinner, or a three-course paired lunch. In honor of the occasion, the Bistro and Bar will also offer an extended menu of Champagnes by the glass. Santé!

Archer Hotel

As fall is one of the most popular times to visit Napa Valley, prices are often sky-high from September through early November. But if you’re willing to play hooky and skip a few days of work, you can enjoy 15 percent off two-night minimum stays at The Archer Hotel, a boutique property in downtown Napa with a gourmet steakhouse and a rooftop spa and pool.

Dr. Wilkinson’s Backyard Resort & Mineral Springs

If stomping on grapes isn’t your idea of vacation fun, treat yourself to an indulgent harvest season experience at Dr. Wilkinson’s Backyard Resort & Mineral Springs, where guests receive 20 percent off the best available rate when they stay Sunday through Thursday. Heighten your relaxation by booking a pampering treatment (not included), whether it’s a bud bath, a Himalayan salt stone massage, or the “Calistoga Elixir” whirlpool bath infused with grape skins, seeds, and oils.

Carneros Resort & Spa

If you needed another excuse to visit Napa during the magical harvest season, Carneros Resort and Spa is offering guests who stay two nights or longer a resort credit of $300 to spend toward a variety of experiences—brunch at the Boon Fly Café, a luxurious spa treatment like a Quiet Mind massage or Valley Glow body scrub, or a seasonally-inspired dinner at FARM.

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