Located immediately north of the City of Napa, this winery is in a relatively cool microclimate (Technically, Oak Knoll Appellation). The winery is actually quite lovely, with a very distinct Tuscan theme-but done quite well, with sgrafitto stencilling on the stucco, a lovely stone paved courtyard with a fountain, wrought iron balconies and other ironwork, and nice wooden shutters. Very impressive imo-if you're going to do "kitsch," do it with conviction! Pleasant tasting room staff-they were actually quite busy. They were serving nibbles (I was not hungry, though). Solid A- on the winery.
I tried the Mondova Reserves. The 2004 Merlot was, frankly, outstanding, with complex layers of savory and herbal flavors but still a nice dollop of black, juicy fruit. One of the best Napa Merlots I've tried this year-I frankly preferred it right now to the Chateatu Destrieux St Emillion I tried this weekend in the same price range (heresy!) I really do prefer, often, cooler climate wines from the bottom of Napa County-although there can be good fruit bombs, too, I prefer the savory and herbal and greener wines (no Bell Pepper, though!).
The Cab was also quite nice, with similar cool weather character. I will probably be back.
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