Artesa Winery food and wine pairing
I’m visiting Artesa winery with a few friends and enjoying their wine and tapa taste pairing on my tour today in Napa. Artesa Winery in the Carneros region of iconic Napa Valley in Northern California is a stunning modern winery with gorgeous views of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir vineyards. The winery takes its name from the Catalan word “handcrafted” and the place exudes a modern interpretation of sculpture, architecture, artistry and their delicious wines.
The drive up to the winery is idyllic, passing through small country roads with scenic views of farms and vineyards, far removed from the typical Napa Valley glitz and presentation. Although, arriving the winery is quite impressive with a ride uphill to the winery on a bluff, you know you have arrived with a peek a boo views of an enormous water feature and fountains below with magnificent views of the vineyards and Carneros valley below.
Understated yet sublime entry
Climbing up a set of stairs along a rill (water channels) running next to the stairs add an exciting element and at the top, you are greeted with more dazzling water features: on the left side a series of modern fountains spraying water to symbolize the opening of sparkling wine and on the right, a sculpture set in a round reservoir with those stunning views of the Carneros Valley.
Artesa has forged a strong impression and relationship growing California grapes and wines under the tutelage of wine maker Mark Beringer. An award-winning and fifth generation wine maker, Mark is the great, great-grandson of Beringer founder Jacob Beringer. I know that we are in good hands with our wine tasting and we are all also looking forward to the tapa tasting along with the wine flight that will be offered today.
Enter Millie, our bubbly and sweet guide for the wine and food pairing. First, Millie brings us to the entrance to sample their Cordornu Grand Reserve Sparkling wine and tasting local fresh fruit in an Artesa dark chocolate cup, it’s a heavenly first start and the result is a delicious combination of sweet matched with bubbly brut.
In the basement
Millie takes us on a comprehensive tour of the winery and we visit the heart of operations downstairs in their production and storage facilities. Millie shares information about the wine making and production process at Artesa while we walk through the stunning architecture created by Barcelona architect, Domingo Triay. The avant-garde structure is sublime and successfully blends seamlessly into the landscape without being glitzy. Covered in local grasses and earth, the winery is naturally protected and insulated while offering expansive views of the Carneros region of Napa.
The food and wine tasting
Finally the tour is completed and we are escorted to a beautiful dining pavilion with handcrafted chairs and looking out into a water feature with a Madonna, child and grapes. The table setting is stunning with beautiful place settings, crystal and view to the inner courtyard and fountains – it’s all very elegant and special.
I’m instantly drawn to the beautiful presentation and delicious looking tapas displayed at each setting along with the wines poured for each taste.
We get to taste a flight of Artesa wines in succession with the paired tapa plate – for the wine flight we are tasting today the following wines:
2012 Albarino, Carneros – One of my favorite wines offered with floral notes and various stone fruit scent. It’s supple and nuanced with a nice long finish.
2012 Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley – A lovely Sauvignon with crisp and full flavor with citrus and other tropical fruit aromas. It’s a light bodied, creamy with bright textures, delicious in my book.
2011 Estate Reserve Pinot Noir, Carneros – Coming from two vineyard sources in Carneros, this wine is complex and flavor driven with mixed berries and spicy aromas. Very creamy and rich layered textures
2011 Limited release Tempranillo, Alexander Valley – This wine is lovely with layered notes of berries, spices and bold flavors. I loved the luscious finish to the tempranillo wine.
This is parent company Cordoniu from Spain, first premiere winery in California and they definitely made a big impression with this winery and the partnership with Mark Beringer to be their wine maker. It’s a wonderful visit to their winery and worth doing any of their food or dessert pairings and or tours. For more information about the winery, tours and tastings, please visit their main website located here.
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Thank you to Artesa Winery for hosting me for the wine and food pairing, all opinions and thoughts are my own, the tour and tasting was wonderful and I enjoyed the entire experience.