Wine tasting in the Napa Valley is a joyous experience. Almost 500 wineries call the valley their home. So isn’t that a luscious palate to choose from for a tasting adventure? Yes, of course, yet not all wineries welcome visitors and offer tastings without appointments. Within the valley there are three distinct categories of wineries. One being that there is no permit or access to tasting. These wineries may not be able to build a tasting room based on the size of their production or because they sell out of their wines through their mailing lists. Secondly, there are wineries that welcome visitors on an appointment basis and may offer multiple choices of tastings that could include pairings with cheeses or other small bites. And then there is a third group of wineries that are open during certain hours and offer a menu of tasting options for the visitor, even without an appointment.
This is where Hall Wines fits in. Hall offers a portfolio of wines that one may stop in and sip through. They offer many different experiences to explore, although some of these will require an appointment as well. For those driving down Highway 29 looking for a beautiful setting and great tasting wine – Hall Wines is a perfect stop.
The walk-in tasting bar is situated upstairs in a magnificent building with clear glass walls that looks out over 26 acres of vines. It is truly gorgeous. On the day we visited, the sun was warm and bright in the sky and the vines stretched out in full view. Our wine tasting started with a crisp Sauvignon Blanc that set up our palates for the rich wines to follow. Hall also makes Pinot Noir under the label of Walt. On this day, the Pinot made from grapes from the Santa Rita Hills was one of my very favorites. The cabernets that were poured were deep and rich and begged for another sip. These are well-crafted wines that have met with critics’ approval. For example, Jack’s Masterpiece (retail $150) was awarded 99 points from Robert Parker. Quality streams through all their offerings. Hall makes a more modest priced cabernet that received 96 points, and it retails for $40. That is a great buy!
The quality of wine is the main reason that you would want to stop and taste at Hall Wines; however, there is much more to appreciate. The grounds are gorgeous with pleasant seating areas throughout, and artwork adorns both inside and outside areas. At the entrance, there is a large rabbit sculpture that is eye catching and remarkable. Take some time to relax, explore and enjoy!