On the east side of the Napa Valley is the Silverado Trail. This road is much less traveled and is the preferred route for the Napa natives. Unfortunately, it is also a famous road for cyclists, so be on the lookout for them. On both sides of the road, there is excellent vineyard scenery. Wine tasters have a fabulous selection of wineries. Take at least a day to tour a few wineries on the Silverado Wine Route. Make sure you book a tasting room reservation well in advance of your wine country getaway.
For more advice, check the Napa Valley Wine Country Planning Guide.
Silverado Wine Route
• Clos du Val – Makers of fine Cabs from the Stags Leap AVA
• Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars – the historic “Judgment o Paris” wine
• Pine Ridge Winery – Beautiful setting, great red wines, and caves
• Robert Sinskey Vineyards – Solar power, biodynamic farming, food pairings
• Mumm Napa – Sparkling wine and patio tasting, fresh vineyard views
• Rutherford Hill Winery – Great Valley view, good picnic spot, cave tours
• William Harrison – 1800 cases of excellent wine
• Duckhorn Vineyards – Exquisite tasting experience, beautiful vineyard views
• Casa Nuestra – Small family winery, unique blends, cozy
We recommend you visit no more than three wineries in one day. Enjoy the beauty of the Napa Valley.
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Dining and Lodging Recommendations – Silverado Wine Route
Restaurants Premium Lodging Budget Lodging Wine Map
Additional Wineries to Consider on the Silverado Trail
• Judd’s Hill – First winery on Silverado Trail, great Cab
• ZD Wines – Organically farmed, delicious Chardonnay, Pinot Noir
• Paraduxx – Try the Paraduxx Napa Valley Red Wine
• Hagafen Cellars – Small family-run winery, delicious white wines
Clos du Val
The first winery on the tour as you are traveling north is Clos du Val. It is a beautiful winery located in the Stags Leap Appellation. They make a variety of wines, but their specialty is Cabernet Sauvignon, releasing several different bottlings of Cabernets each year. The Cabernets rank among the best in the Napa Valley. Don’t pass up the other wines; try the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Clos du Val is the only winery that makes a Zinfandel from grapes grown in the Stags Leap AVA. The wine tasting room staff is top notch, taking time and effort to make your visit informative and enjoyable. Next on this wine route is Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars.
Stag’s Leap Cellars
At the 1976 Judgment of Paris, one of the greatest moments in Napa Valley wine history occurred when a 1973 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon stunned the wine world and, in particular, the French. British wine merchant Steve Spurrier arranged a blind tasting of California Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon against French White Burgundy wines and Bordeaux Reds. The ’73 Stag’s Leap was judged the top wine by a panel of French wine tasters. The 1976 Judgment of Paris brought exactly what Napa Valley needed, the recognition that Napa Valley wines were among the best in the world. Warren Winiarski was the owner and winemaker at the time. In 2007, Warren sold his winery to the Ste. Michelle Wine Estates and the Antinori Family of Italy. Today Stag’s Leap is a very popular winery among wine country travelers. Their Cabernet wines are outstanding. The views of the Vaca Mountains are stunning.
Pine Ridge is one of the elite wineries of the Napa Valley, making some of the best Cabernets from the Stags Leap AVA. The winery also owns prime vineyards in other areas of the Napa Valley. Pine Ridge is a tranquil and pretty setting for a picnic lunch. You might also want to take the wine tour and have a chance to admire the caves stocked with over 4000 barrels of aging wine. You need to call ahead to reserve a spot on the tour. There is also a demonstration vineyard on the grounds providing visitors with insights into the vineyard management. The winery is located on the west side of the Silverado Trail about a mile south of the Yountville Cross Rd and almost directly across from Stags Leap Wine Cellars.
Robert Sinskey Vineyards
Robert Sinskey Vineyards is one of the most innovative wineries in the Napa Valley. It is a wine country visitor’s paradise. The winery is sustainable with Biodynamic farming and the use of solar power. View beehives, sheep, and the vegetable gardens. The state-of-the-art kitchen prepares culinary delights to pair with the beautiful Robert Sinskey wines. Currently, there are three different tasting menu options. The best include a tour of the vineyards, caves, and cellars and a three-course meal of seasonal goodies paired with wine. Robert Sinskey is located on the Silverado Trail and affords lovely views of vineyards in the Oakville area.
This is a very popular tourist winery. There is more to do here than taste sparkling wine. The beautifully decorated fine art gallery is a “must see.” There are two exhibits, one housing various collections on a rotating basis throughout the year. The other gallery has a collection of Ansel Adams prints on loan from the Ansel Adams Family. There are one-hour tours of the sparkling wine process. For tasting sparkling wine, there is table service outside on the patio or tasting is done in the salon. Each area offers amazing views of the vineyards in Napa Valley.
Rutherford Hill Winery
Rutherford Hill is a popular winery for a tasting, touring, and a picnic lunch. The winery has regularly scheduled 30-minute tours, which include a visit to their fantastic mile long cave system. There are three picnic areas to choose from. We like the picnic area hidden among olive trees. It is quiet and provides a good view of the Napa Valley below. Either a glass of Sauvignon Blanc or the Gewürztraminer is a great choice to go with your lunch. As you are traveling north on the Silverado Trail, you find Rutherford Hill Road just a short distance from Rutherford Cross Road. It will be on the east side and is a bit hidden from view. Travel up the hill past Auberge du Soleil to the winery.
William Harrison makes only a small amount of wine, 1800 cases, and five different varietals. The Chardonnay and Pinot Noir come from contract vineyards in Carneros and the Sonoma Coast, respectively. The Bordeaux blend, the Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc wines are all produced from their estate Rutherford vineyards that surround the winery facility. We think the Cab Franc is one of the best in the Napa Valley
Duckhorn winery is on Lodi Lane just off the Silverado Trail. As you turn into the driveway, you will see the Victorian tasting room set back against the manicured vineyards. This is one of the most beautiful settings anywhere in the Napa Valley. As soon as you set foot into the winery, you get the sense that you are somewhere exquisite. The tasting area is elegant and tasteful, matching the high quality of the wines produced by Duckhorn. Consult the Duckhorn website for full options for tastings and fees.
Next on this wine route is this little off-beat winery. The Kirkhams purchased the ranch in 1956 and began making the Casa Nuestra label in 1979. They have some off-beat wines like Grey Riesling, Chenin Blanc, and a red field blend wine they call Casa Nuestra Tinto. Elvis was here in 1960. Ask the tasting room host why. Casa Nuestra winer is one of our favorites to visit. It is what like Napa Valley used to be.
Additional Napa Valley Wine Routes to enjoy
- Boutique Wineries on Highway 29 – small and fascinating
- Famous & Historic Wine Trail – the wineries that made the Napa Valley
- Calistoga Wine Route – northern end of the Valley
- Hidden wineries of the Napa Valley – get away from the crowds
- Napa Valley Sparkling Wine Route – a toasty set of wineries
- Wine and Art Wine Route – wineries with art collections
Tips for your Napa Valley Wine Tour
- You are encouraged to have a designated driver. Consider hiring a limousine or van service.
- First time to a winery in Napa? Find out what happens in a typical tasting room.
- Are you wondering about how to taste wine? Wine Tasting Techniques
- Some ideas for which wineries to visit.
- If you cannot have a picnic, enjoy a delicious lunch at one of Napa Valley’s many fine restaurants.
- We list premium lodging and budget lodging.
- Pace yourself and make a day of wine tasting. Don’t forget to take some photos.
- Visiting three wineries in one day is enough to you keep you busy and content with the slow and easy pace of wine country.
- Please read our Disclaimer Document on the information contained on Wine Country Getaways.