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John Doe
December 16, 2021 | John Doe

Featured in Marin Magazine

Marin Magazine

Coombsville: The Secluded, Scenic Napa Wine Destination That You Probably Didn’t Know About

By Christina Mueller

With 30 miles and 16 American Viticultural Areas (AVA)s stretched north to south along Highway 29, Napa Valley is renowned for its legendary wines, luxurious resorts and Michelin-starred restaurants, yet at its southern end lies a region many visitors have yet to explore. Named for Napa’s founder, Coombsville is a relatively compact AVA that is not as well-known as its neighbors to the north. Its dense geographic area — Downtown Napa hems it in to the northwest and American Canyon to the south — makes it more intimate than Yountville or Calistoga, and the slower pace of development here means a mellower vibe and a mere sprinkling of up-valley’s glitz. With its small farms and neighborhood feel, think of Coombsville as a nature hike with wine. 

Shaped like a caldera, a large cauldronlike hollow that forms shortly after the emptying of a magma chamber in a volcanic eruption, Coombsville benefits from pockets of cool breeze and fog that don’t make it up valley. The cooler temperatures are expressed in the region’s wines — sauvignon blanc speaks of grapefruit, not grass, which is typical of other regions in Napa and abroad. In cabernet sauvignon, soft, approachable tannins are the norm, but Coombsville cabernet sauvignon expresses itself most distinctly with flavors of blueberry and violet that are signatures of this southerly region... 

...Due east from Oxbow lies Shadybrook Estate with an expansive patio suitable for socially-distanced tastings. Horse lovers take note: The property incorporates the former Rapp Quarter Horse Ranch, and vineyard tours by horseback are followed by a tasting of wines sourced from the vineyards you recently passed through. The rosé is a standout...

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