But there's another side to Napa that only in-the-know... or extremely lucky... visitors ever encounter. It's the less pretentious side of the valley, and it's embodied by a winery in St. Helena that is celebrating a very special anniversary in 2010.
It's V. Sattui Winery & Italian Market, which is about to turn the sprightly age of 125.
The winery was founded in 1885 by Vittorio Sattui, and brought to the Napa Valley in 1975 by Vittorio's great-grandson, Dario.
Its long-time Napa home offers one of the few places in the valley where visitors can enjoy a picnic lunch. Century-old oaks and other trees provide plenty of shade for the 2-acre expanse of lawn where visitors can kick back and enjoy great wine and tasty Italian treats.
V. Sattui's success is perfectly understandable on one hand, given the quality of the wine and the products sold in the Italian Market. On the other hand, it's somewhat surprising, given the high profiles and global reputations of many of its neighbor wineries.
And consider this: V. Sattui wines are sold only at the V. Sattui winery.
To complement those wines, V. Sattui's Italian Market offers more than 200 different cheeses, salami and pates, as well as desserts and fresh fruit.
Stop by on a weekend when the weather is nice, and you'll also be able to savor delectables from a mesquite barbecue, wood-fired pizza oven and fresh mozzarella bar.
(Note to our wine club members: For more on the joy of fresh mozzarella, be sure to check out the next Grapevine newsletter, which will be posted right after the first of the year.)
The Sattui family promises an assortment of special events during its 125th anniversary year, which means 2010 will be the best year ever to pay a visit. When we learn more about some of these events, we'll share the information with you here on VinesseTODAY.com.