Why Judd’s Hill Winery is a good place to start your wine tour in the Napa Valley
Judd’s Hill winery in the Napa Valley is a very good place to start exploring the Napa Valley. Many tourists miss this winery because it is very near the start of the Silverado Trail at the southern end of the Valley. Most travelers cross over the Valley floor to the Silverado Trail at Oak Knoll on Highway 29. If you turn left to head north on the Silverado Trail, you will miss Judd’s Hill. From San Francisco and Oakland, we take the back side of downtown Napa. Instead of continuing on Highway 29 to the left, we take CA-221 N and CA-121 N to the Silverado Trail. It is a short cut, and if you go this way you will not miss the first few wineries on the Silverado Trail. Why is Judd’s Hill a good place to start your wine tour? The winery is small and family owned. The folks who work the tasting room are very informative and low key. The wines at Judd’s Hill are very good and, better yet, priced reasonably for the Napa Valley. No price gouging here. We really like the Pinot Noir and the Cabernet Sauvignon. We also like a special wine called “Magic.” It is a red blend of several grapes and made for Judd Finklestein’s magic group. The case price came to $16 a bottle and it is a very good wine bargain. The Judd’s Hill winery does a huge business in the custom crush arena. They have many clients who produce a small amount of wine. Judd’s Hill will find grapes, make the wine, and bottle and label the wine depending on the desires of the client. The surrounding area at Judd’s Hill is absolutely beautiful. I believe the area is in the Oak Knoll AVA. There are two other wonderful experiences for wine travelers at Judd’s Hill. There is a wine and food pairing session that one must book in advance. It is an hour-and-a-half session with wine educator, CJ Friedman. She makes things very understandable and demonstrates how foods change the taste of the wine. The second fun event is a blending camp. Visitors have the chance to create their own bottle of wine from a choice of different varietals of wine. Complete details along with visitor information is at the Judd’s Hill Website.