Saturday, May 7, 2011

Platypus Tours

The first full day of our arrival in Napa was a scheduled wine tour trip.  We were a bit nervous doing such a social group thing as social group things are not something Mr. J and I like all that much.  However, you would be very surprised how social one can become after a few lot of wine.  Platypus tours came recommended by a few people I know and also was part of a package deal we had with our hotel. 

This was a transportation for the day.  Our driver was Karl.

With Karl's help we hit up 4 vineyards, drank lots of wine (and water), had cheese and crackers, lunch, saw gorgeous views and got lots of dinner reccomendations.  Basically the minute you step on the bus you can relax for the day.  No worries except deciding which wine you want to purchase.

Our first stop was Arger Martucci vineyard.  Platypus likes to focus its tours on smaller vineyards.  We learned lots of small details about each vineyard on the way to that stop from Karl.  We also got lots of personal attention at each of the vineyards.

Since May is just the early stages of the grape growing season the plants were small and green.  Late September and October are when the harvesting actually takes place.  The fields become a shade of purple.

We enjoyed are cheese and cracker snack at this beautiful site.  

Napa is know for its Cabernets but each tasting came with a white.  Thank goodness our group favored reds.  I am not much of a white wine fan.

Our second stop was Judd's Hill vineyard.

You think that a tasting would be just that...a tasting.  But let me assure you that the glass were about 1/2 full at each place.  We had lots of wine.  I am pretty much done for the day after stop one.  I know you can spit it out but the wine was so good and special.  I sucked it up and finished my glass or shared with Mr. J.  Somehow the wine did not have the same effect on him.

Our third stop was Steltzner vineyard.

The tasting house was surrounded by hills and made for very pretty pictures. We sampled 5 different wines here and got to sit in the sunshine.  

It's funny how all of my pictures ended up being of white wine.  We had lots and lots of red.  Mr. J and I ended up buying a bottle at each of the different vineyards for souvenirs, 4 Cabernets and 1 Syrah.

Our last stop was for some bubbly.  There was a group of girls for a bachelorette party that were craving some bubbly.  We made the stop at Domaine Chandon.  I am a fan of Moet Chandon for champagne so this was right up my alley.

 This was a perfect way to end the day.  I just love bubbles.

I would highly recommend Platypus tours for newbies and return visitors alike.  Karl answered any and every question asked about wines, the area, and dinner reservations.  Although the fee for Platypus does not include any of the tasting fees Karl was able to arrange reduced fees (2 for 1) or free tasting with wine purchase at most of the vineyards.  He also helped with getting the wine packaged for shipping.  We did the Napa tour but they also have a Sonoma tour.  Mr. J and I had such a great time and plan to do it again next time we are in town.

1 comment:

  1. What a wonderful day! I've never been able to spit it out, either... But we've never done a tour like this. What fun!


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