Sequoia Grove Winery on Highway 29 in Oakville sits on a beautiful plot of land surrounded by tall majestic redwood trees. Redwood trees rarely grow this far from the Pacific Coast but here, at the Sequoia tasting room and winery, they stand beautiful and majestic.
We sat with winemaker Molly Hill and tasted most of the wines that are currently released. Molly had been the assistant winemaker since 2003 and in 2007 became head winemaker, as Michael Trujillo moved to the position of President and Director of Winemaking. Together, Molly and John have really spiced up the wine offerings at Sequoia Grove. Much known for its flagship Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and its Rutherford Bench Cabernet, a new lineup of wines has been introduced. These wines, along with their price points, should attract a new group of followers to the winery. Most notable and delicious were the 09 Sauvignon Blanc, 09 Rollicking RosÃ© and an amazing 09 Glorious Gewurz. The Gewurztraminer grapes are sourced from a vineyard near Ukiah in Mendocino County. This wine for us is one of the finest California Gewurztraminers we have tasted in recent times. At $18 it is a great value. These three wines, along with two other interesting reds, are available only at the winery. This is reason alone to visit this winery, plus you get the bonus of sitting in a grove of redwood trees.
The Sequoia Grove Winery also offers something that very few wineries offer anywhere in California, let alone the Napa Valley. Here you can buy wines by the glass. What a great idea should you want to picnic out among the Redwoods! You don’t need to buy a full bottle and this also solves the problem when one person wants something different from the rest of the group.
The Redwoods are certainly a big feature of this winery and recently, on Arbor Day, the winery announced a campaign to help save the Redwood Trees. The winery has created a partnership with the Sequoia Parks Foundation. The winery has donated $10,000 to the project and will donate a percentage of sales through the “Try a Bottle, Save a Tree” program at all Firebird Wood Fired Grill restaurants, 17 nationwide. The winery will have other activities through the rest of this year to raise funds to save the Redwoods. What a fabulous idea that benefits both the winery’s PR and those beautiful Redwood trees.
The tasting room has recently been renovated and one very interesting thing caught my eye as I was taking photos. There are two Redwood Trees right up against the face of the entrance to the tasting room. These are relatively young Redwoods, say about 250 years old. They have a way to go in growth, both in height and diameter. I would say in roughly ten years the trunks of these Redwood trees will make their way inside the tasting room. I speak from experience, as we had to remodel our garage when our next-door neighbor’s Redwood tree slowly but surely inched its way into our garage. Our remodel gives us breathing room from the Redwood for about 20 years, so says the arborist.
The tasting room at Sequoia is open daily from 10:30 to 5:00 and offers tours and a couple of wine-pairing programs. The winery is located about one mile north of Oakville amidst a batch of wineries including Turnbull, St. Supery, and Peju. Across the way is Robert Mondavi. We say that Sequoia Grove is a “must” if you are in the area. You get three treats: the Cabernet Sauvignon, the wonderful Gewurztraminer, and the Redwoods.