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Rutherford, California
 Region: Napa Valley

Located in the middle of the Napa Valley wine region and often mentioned in association with another nearby community, Oakville, Rutherford offers some of Napa's most scenic fields and meadows. Many consider Rutherford as the best place in the world to grow cabernet grapes. Bottom land soil of Rutherford and nearby "Oakville dust" are credited with helping provide the perfect conditions for these popular grapes. 


With Mayacama Mountains to the west and the Howell Mountains to the east, Rutherford landscapes are panoramic and can be enjoyed by those  who pay several hundred dollars per night to stay at Auberge du Soleil, a resort perched on Rutherford Hill and featuring 50 rooms and suites, each with its own terrace overlooking the vine-studded valley. 


Leave the kids at home--how different things are today!  From the founding of the community possibly in the 1870's when new generations were needed to work the family fields and businesses, places such as Auberge du Soleil (roughly translated as Inn of the Sun), today encourage a concept of retreat from the daily routine and highly recommend children NOT be brought to their property.  It's wonderful to have such places to escape to, yet many of the wineries along this region rely on the capital and teamwork of family members. From the husband-wife team of Director Francis Ford Coppola  to the father-daughter duo of Michael Grigch, tightly knit families become immersed in the wine business and look to their personal support systems for help in everything from marketing to management. 


Considered the founder of modern day Rutherford, Judge S. C. Hastings owned many vineyards in the area and helped generate interest in the region with his products.  This is where the likes of  Captain Niebaum established Inglenook and helped put Napa Valley on the map. Indeed, it's easy to enjoy the fruits of earlier efforts with award winning wines sampled in sumptuous settings. Be sure to stop at  Rutherford's Niebaum-Coppola Winery to see its gracious fountains, rare wood stair cases and railings and collector Tucker car that was featured in the movie of the same name, and was developed by the movie director Francis Ford Coppola's father.  Our tour guide joked that Coppola made the movie, "TUCKER" in an attempt to recoup some of the losses his father experienced in building the car that would not break, and thus, could not make it to market.


From the fine Italian tapestries and cloths that Coppola's wife scours the world to find, to the more affordable knick knacks, the gift shop at the winery is unique and worth a look.  One of our staff could not afford the $300+ wool shawl sold at the store, but was delighted when we returned to the Embassy Suites hotel in Napa, to observe several of the shawls draped across sofas and chairs in the reception lounge. This is a place where you don't have to be wealthy to visit, but you feel like a king or queen. Tasting a fine wine and surveying the hills of this sun-kissed region makes "cloud nine" seem like a pretty good choice. 



Rutherford Wineries

Beaulieu Vineyard
1960 South St. Helena Hwy. Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee
Located in the town of Rutherford, Beaulieu Vineyard welcomes guests from around the world with a glass of wine and a friendly smile.

Grgich Hills Cellar
1829 St. Helena Hwy. Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee
Complimentary tasting with purchase!
Family-owned since 1977, we're world-renowned for our Chardonnay, Zinfandel, Cabernet, Merlot, and more! Also, join them for barrel tasting!

Niebaum-Coppola Winery
1991 St. Helena Highway Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee
Francis and Eleanor Coppola invite you to visit one of the premiere California Wineries, the Niebaum Coppola Estate Winery located on the historic Inglenook Estate.
Rutherford Grove Winery
1673 St. Helena Highway Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee
Voted among top five small wineries to visit in Napa Valley by Wall Street Journal. Family owned and operated, Rutherford Grove specializes in handcrafted red wines.

Rutherford Hill Winery
200 Rutherford Hill Road Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee
The caves of Rutherford Hill are regarded as one of the most extensive wine-aging cave systems in America. Tours available.
Sawyer Cellars
8350 St. Helena Highway
Rutherford, CA 94573

St. Supery Vineyards & Winery

8440 St. Helena Highway (29) Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee
St. Supery is a family winery specializing in estate grown Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignons. Guided tours are offered. Call for hours.

Staglin Family Vineyard
P.O. Box 680 Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes, by appointment.
Staglin Family Vineyard is a family-owned Napa Valley winery, devoted to producing extremely limited quantities of the highest quality wine from its own vineyard.

Sullivan Vineyards
877.244.7337 (BIG REDS)
1090 Galleron Road Rutherford, CA 94573
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee
Voted top 5 wineries to visit in Napa Valley by Wall Street Journal. Sullivan Vineyards is a small family winery with award winning

Tres Sabores
PO Box 238
Rutherford, CA 94573

ZD Wines
- ZD Wines has an established reputation for producing wines of outstanding quality, distinctive style and consistent character.
8383 Silverado Trail Rutherford, CA
Tasting Room - Yes
Cost: Fee