A Tasting Experience at Charles Krug Winery
The Mount View Hotel & Spa is always looking for ways to enhance the visitors traveling experience. One way we do this is by partnering up with local wineries in the Calistoga area to offer our guests a tasting experience that best fits their interests! We are honored to have Charles Krug as one of our 13 winery partners in the Napa Valley.
Charles Krug Winery was one of the first commercial wineries in the Napa Valley. Their history dates back to 1858, when Charles Krug introduced the cider press as a more efficient method of wine making. The winery opened in 1861 and they have been producing quality wines ever since. In 1882, Charles Krug built the first public tasting and sales room in California. The Cesare Mondavi family purchased the 147-acre Charles Krug Winery in 1943 and the first cold-fermentation room in California was added. In 1963, Charles Krug Winery was the first to import French oak barrels to age wines. In 2009, the Charles Krug Family Reserve Barrel Room and Carriage House restoration were completed. This history is the backbone of Charles Krug Winery.
When I first arrived to the property at Charles Krug, I was in awe by the large facility and towering oak trees that sprawled across the grounds. I worked my way to the tasting room where I was greeted immediately by my host for the day, Buddy. All of the wines that we tasted are part of their Reserve tasting and can only be purchased on the property.
Buddy began our tour and tasting in the Redwood Cellar with the 2015 LR Sauvignon Blanc which contained bright, crisp acidity with grapefruit, passion fruit and lime aromatics. The tasting room was restored with Redwood from the original barrels used in the property. As we finished our first glass, we began to walk through the tasting room to a door that entered into the Barrel room.
Once inside the barrel room, Buddy grabbed the wine thief to extract the wine from the barrels and explained the two types of varietals that we would be tasting. The barrel room contained over 900 barrels and was truly extravagant. The first was a 100% Cabernet Sauvignon which contained notes of cherry and blackberry. We then tried the 100% Petit Verdot that possessed a heavy tannin structure. The Petit Verdot was my favorite out of the two! Buddy explained to us that these varietals out of the barrel would later be combined with other varietals to create their Family Generations Red Blend.
We then took the private elevator from the barrel room upstairs to the Loft, one of their many spaces for events! Buddy directed us over to a large timeline and began to explain the history of Charles Krug Winery and the Mondavi Family. Charles Krug (and Napa Valley) truly wouldn’t be the same without the impact and innovations of the Mondavi Family. As we discussed the history of Charles Krug, we tasted the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon. This bottle is a great entry level price point ($30/750 ml) for the wines that Krug offers.
We then walked back downstairs to the private Vintage Selection Library (VSL) where we tasted the 2013 Family Reserve Generations and 2012 Vintage Selection Cabernet Sauvignon. The VSL featured a large Oak table and a wine cellar that any wine lover would dream of! The room had a very elegant feel to it while still emphasizing the history behind the winery and the Mondavi Family. This would be a great setting for any group looking for a private and intimate tasting.
What it really comes down to is this; Charles Krug Winery and the Mondavi Family know how to do Hospitality right! The staff was extremely knowledgeable about the Napa Valley and were very approachable. This is important for visitors coming to the Valley who are unfamiliar with what makes Napa wines so special! The ability to engage and ask questions is what makes the experience so fun and memorable! If you are looking for an intimate tasting experience while also learning about history, then Charles Krug Winery is the right place for you!
Wines we tasted:
2015 LR Sauvignon Blanc St. Helena – $35 per 750 ml
2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Estate Bottled Napa Valley – $30 per 750 ml
2013 Family Reserve Generations Napa Valley – $60 per 750 ml
2012 Vintage Selection Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley – $100 per 750 ml
100% Cabernet Sauvignon – 2015 Slinsen Ranch, Yountville
100% Petit Verdot – 2015 Yountville
A very special thank you to our winery partner, Charles Krug, for allowing us to enjoy the Limited Reserve Tasting!