Hans Fahden Vineyards is actually in Sonoma County and this is a Napa and Carneros blog. So, why write about a winery that is not in Napa or Carneros? Well, for two reasons. The winery is only 600 feet beyond the Napa County line and secondly the best way to get to the winery is on the Petrified Forest Road from Highway 128 in Calistoga.
We found this winery to be quite interesting and worth a visit. We were greeted by Antone Fahden and he was very informative and quite pleased to show us around and talk passionately about the winery. Hans Fahden makes only Cabernet Sauvignon and there is no pretentious talk here about “cult” Cabernet. There is no tasting fee for the vertical tasting of 2000, 2002, and 2003 Cabernet. All the Hans Fahden Cabernet comes from their estate vineyards located on the Mayacamus Mountains at an altitude of 1200 feet. The price of the Cabernets is $25 and the wines are sold only at the tasting room or through their Web site. The Cabernet is very elegant without heavy tannins and the alcohol content is below 14%. The Hans Fahden Cabernets have a distinctive earthy characteristic to them. Only 2500 cases of wine are made per year.
The setting is very beautiful and peaceful, the perfect spot for a winery wedding or a special occasion event. Because Hans Fahden Vineyards is in Sonoma County, permitting issues for big events at wineries are much less restrictive than Napa County. Hans Fahden Vineyards has become a popular wedding venue, so much so that they are almost booked solid for 2008 with 116 weddings scheduled. That is impressive and hard to imagine.
To get to Hans Fahden Vineyards from the Napa Valley, head towards Calistoga. At the stop sign at Highway 29 in Calistoga continue straight ahead to Highway 128. Turn left onto the Petrified Forest Road and continue up the road until you arrive at Hans Fahden about 3 miles.
The Good: Pretty setting in the Mayacamus Mountains, Good Cabernet, Good value.
The Bad: If you don’t like Cabernet, they do not make any other wines.