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Steltzner Vineyards

Outside the tasting room at Steltzner Vineyards

On my recent trip to Napa Valley I was able to visit many of the regionís wineries. Over the next few installments of this column Iím going to write about some of the vineyards that stood out for different reasons. Many featured magnificent wines, others offered amazing tasting experiences.

Steltzner Vineyards, in the Stagís Leap District of Napa Valley, offered some of the best wines to be found in the area, and at excellent prices. Here are a few of the highlights of my wine-tasting there.

The Steltzner Vineyards 2004 Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon was one of the best Cabernets I tasted on my whole trip. It has a very good nose, great color and wonderful fruit accents. The blackberry, blueberry and floral accents lead into a very clean finish. This great wine is also very reasonably priced, and an excellent value.

The Steltzner Vineyards 2004 Stags Leap District Estate Merlot is also an excellent wine from this medium-sized vineyard. This Merlot has a bit of spice and hints at herbal aromas on the nose. Although more bold and expressive than most Merlots, itís not overpowering and pairs well with many foods.

Though these wines were my two favorite offerings, the high quality and good pricing of the entire Steltzner line amounted to me enjoying some of the best overall wines I found in Napa. Also deserving of a special mention is the 2005 Claret.

Keep Drinking,

Joe ďWineĒ Giordano