Many people visiting Napa limit their experience to visiting a few of the well known wineries along Highway 29 and while this can be a lot of fun, I believe your trip can be greatly enhanced by planning ahead of time and booking a few tours at some lesser known but incredible wineries.
Newton Vineyard-(Owned by Domaine Chandon)
This winery is located at the top of Spring Mountain up a twisty mountain road off of Highway 29 in St Helena and can be tricky to get to; however if you print the directions from the website (don’t rely on a GPS) and pay close attention to the signs, it’s not that difficult to get to and more than worth the effort. I recommend planning the tour for the afternoon when the morning fog burns off to get the best view.
Once you make it to the winery, the view from the top which includes an overview of St Helena, along with mountains and vineyards will take your breath away! There are flowers throughout the grounds along with a beautifully sculptured garden and pagoda (see photo). Further up from the winery is a beautiful terrace outlined by lush red rose bushes and an incredible view of the mountains.
The tour takes you through the cave which includes racks of aging rare and older vintages as well as the grounds and garden. Following the tour, you head back to the main building for the tasting. The tasting is held in a beautiful room with glass walls overlooking the mountains and consists of a wine and food pairing (appetizers) which is incredible. The food is prepared by chefs from the Etoile restaurant in Domaine Chandon and is perfect with the wine. In addition, you get a chance to compare filtered and unfiltered white and red wines.
Although the tour and tasting was approximately 90 minutes, you can easily spend another hour afterwards exploring the property and taking pictures of the spectacular grounds.