1160 Oak Knoll
Avenue, Napa, California 94558
by Sergio Sismondo
is located on the east side of the St. Helena Highway, just leaving the
city of Napa. The entrance to the winery is on Oak Knoll Avenue, about
1/2 mile away from the highway. The main building, dating from 1886, is
a National Historic Landmark. The gardens surrounding the main building
are in themselves spectacular. They are comprised of meticulously
manicured aromatic herbs and other plants, and they are symbolic of the
care with which this winery does everything else. The tasting room is
cool and quiet, and loaded with interesting and tasteful accessories,
wine books and cook books for visitors to purchase.
The 1997 vintage of this Trefethen Estate wine won the
title of "BEST RED WINE IN AMERICA" at the Atlanta
International Wine Challenge. The 1999 vintage won a gold
medal, the same title "BEST RED WINE IN AMERICA", in
addition to "BEST OF SHOW". The 1996 vintage won
a Gold Medal at the West Coast Wine Competition, and another Gold
Medal at the California State Fair Wine Competition.
(2) The 2003 vintage of this
excellent Dry Riesling won a Gold Medal and "BEST OF
CLASS" at the San Diego National Wine Competition, and many
more accolades by the San Francisco Chronicle, Decanter Magazine,
and others. This is another wine we regularly purchase at the
(3) The Dry Riesling from the
2005 vintage is among the best wines we have had in years
priced at $20.00.
(4) "Quandary" is a blend
of 60% Viognier, 20% Riesling, and 20% Chardonnay.
(5) This magnificent 2004 Trefethen
Estate Chardonnay was awarded FIVE STARS by the Restaurant Wine
(6) This wonderful Merlot is
blended with 15% Cabernet-Sauvignon, both grapes from the Tefethen
Estate in Oak Knoll District.
choice for most interesting red wine tasted is the 2004
Cabernet Franc, from the Trefethen Estate, Oak Knoll
District, which is priced at $35 and received our rating of 92.
This wonderful creation, in the Bordeaux style, is rich and
lush, with many layered aromas, especially reminding the palate
of cherries. We recommend to buy some of this, as we did during
our last visit to Trefethen, and as we did with the 2001 and
2002 vintage releases of the same wine in previous years.
- Our choice for most interesting
white wine is 2003 Viognier, from the Trefethen Estate,
priced at $30 and which received our rating of 90. This
wonderfully complex wine gives hints of rose petals in the
aroma, and follows with nuances of oranges and lemons. This
could be among the best Viognier wines anywhere. In fact, the
California Grapevine named the 2002 vintage of this wine among
the RECOMMENDED-TOP TEN Viognier wines.
choice for "best value for money" is the Merlot
Trefethen Estate 2003, priced at $30, and with our rating of 91.
This wine was also the winner of a Gold Medal at the County
Fair, and another Gold Medal at California State Fair Wine
Trefethen consistently produces admirable wines. This year we tasted a
range of wines, both white and red, Dry Riesling, Chardonnay, Cabernet
Franc, and a variety of Cabernet-Sauvignon wines. All the wines were
excellent, and we rated them in the very upper 80's and 90's.
Trefethen's 2001 Chardonnay won
the title of "BEST CHARDONNAY IN THE WORLD" at the World
Wine Olympics, of France's Gault Millau Magazine. Trefethen's
Cabernet Sauvignon of 1998 won First Prize, "TOP RANKED
CABERNET SAUVIGNON" by Connoisseurs Guide to California Wine.
- Our preference for a white wine goes
to the Chardonnay Estate 'Harmony". It is priced at $36
and received our rating of 92.
- Our choice of the best red wine
tasted in 2003 was the Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Reserve 1998,
which is priced at $70 and we rated 95. This wine won many awards,
including "Best Cabernet Sauvignon in California" at the
California State Fair.
- A second choice of red wine was the
Merlot Estate of 1999. It is priced at $26, and has our rating
- Our "Best value for money"
choice goes to the Riesling Estate of 2001, a wonderful dry
style Riesling, priced at $15 and which received our rating of 87.
Earlier in 2003 we had listed as one of
our preferences the Cabernet Sauvignon Estate of 1999, which
is priced at $40 and which we had rated 91.
There is a 10% mixed case discount.
Learn More about Trefethen Connection,
including this winery's wine club, go to: www.trefethen.com.