Rombauer Vineyards has added a new feature to its options for visitors to the winery — a cave tour and tasting. Starting Tuesday, Sept. 5, tours will be offered by appointment at 11 a.m. daily for $60 per person. A second daily tour, at 2 p.m., will be added in October.
Guests will begin the new tour on the hilltop winery’s porch before strolling through scenic gardens to enter the caves through the barrel-shaped door.
The tour continues through the 1,900 linear feet of caves, past stacked rows of small oak barrels as their guide explains why the cave atmosphere is especially suited for the production of small-production wines.
The Cave Tour & Tasting lasts about 90 minutes and features six wines. Cave temperature averages around 62 degrees Fahrenheit, with 80-90 percent humidity; guests are encouraged to bring sweaters or light jackets.
Reservations can be made by calling (707) 963-6606 or (800) 622-2206 or visiting the winery’s website: http://www.rombauer.com/visit/experiences/cave-tour-tasting/.
Rombauer Vineyards is at 3522 Silverado Trail North, St. Helena.
Rombauer’s other guest experiences include guided tastings in the Tasting Room and wines by the glass, available to be enjoyed on the winery’s porch or in its gardens. Reservations are required. The Tasting Room is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. except on major holidays.
About Rombauer Vineyards: Rombauer Vineyards was founded in 1980 in St. Helena by Koerner and Joan Rombauer, who built their three-level winery into a hillside to take advantage of the natural cooling influences.
Caves were added to the property in the 1990s, and today, state-of-the-art equipment includes three optical sorters, basket presses and peristaltic pumps, which ensure gentle handling of the wine every step of the way.
The winery has one of the largest red wine barrel fermentation programs in Napa Valley. Rombauer owns and sustainably farms 350 acres of vineyards in St. Helena, Carneros, Atlas Peak, Calistoga and the Sierra Foothills as well as purchases grapes through long-term relationships with growers in these appellations.
Koerner Rombauer’s great-aunt Irma Rombauer was the author of “The Joy of Cooking.” The winery maintains a close relationship with Irma’s descendants, the Becker family, who have continued cookbook legacy with regular updates. The Beckers provide recipes and food pairings for Rombauer wines and visit the winery each July as part of the annual Joy of Wine event celebrating the release of the newest vintage of Rombauer’s iconic Carneros Chardonnay.
The winery’s current nationally distributed wines are 2015 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, 2015 Carneros Chardonnay, 2013 Carneros Merlot, 2014 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, 2012 Diamond Selection Cabernet Sauvignon and 2014 Rombauer Zinfandel.
In addition, Rombauer Vineyards produces several limited-production and single-vineyard chardonnays, cabernets, zinfandels and dessert wines available only through the winery.