Acacia Winery – Carneros Valley


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Our travels to Acacia began with a text from a friend in the wine business. 

He informed us that he had obtained passage on a private industry only tour and tasting of the Acacia Winery as a surprise for us on our visit to the wine country of California! 

We drove through some of the most beautiful vineyards on our way to Acacia…

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The beauty that surrounded us was so very peaceful and serene..

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We came upon the Acacia Winery, quietly tucked onto a hillside…Acacia Vineyard is located in the heart of the Carneros district off “the beaten path” very close to the Napa/Sonoma Marsh Wildlife area. The one thing you notice when you step out of the car at their parking lot is how absolutely quiet it is, especially when you compare this to the main part of Napa Valley where we spend considerable time. In this part of the Carneros, the roads are small but there is usually little traffic – bicyclists love the Carneros for this very reason, not to mention its scenic postcard views. You are surrounded by rolling hills – a sea of vineyards.

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Headed by general partner Mike Richmond and winemaker Larry Brooks, Acacia debuted in 1979 and quickly distinguished itself as one of the first California wineries to offer vineyard-designate Pinot Noir. Fruit was sourced locally from Carneros growers until the mid-1990s, when Acacia began acquiring properties surrounding the winery. Today these holdings comprise the 150-acre estate that produces Acacia Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

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In 1986, Acacia was sold to Chalone. Since the 1990s, Acacia has focused on Chardonnay wines, as well as some sparkling wine.

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Acacia also bottles under the Caviste label. The annual production is around 55,000 cases.

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In 2005, the Chalone Wine Group was purchased by beverage giant Diageo.

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When we arrive the vineyard workers were filling barrels with Pinot Noir

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We were given a tasting of all the wines produced by Acacia

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Our host allowed me to roam about the barrel room to explore on my own and take a few pictures…..It was delightful being the only people in the winery!

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I love the smell of French Oak and fermenting grapes…..that heady fragrance that promises delightful wines in the future….

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The Acacia visit was as calm and peaceful as the drive to the vineyard.  Their name comes from a single Acacia tree which is still growing in between the rows of grapes in one of their vineyards. This tree is located just down the road 

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16 responses »

  1. Roll out the barrel! I love the shots, Monsieur Tin Man. And I love behind-the-scene tours. I’m green with envy. Wine + Touring = Bliss.

    More dispatches, please!

    (Any wine recommendations? Did you discover a new favorite?)

  2. How special to have a private tour and tasting. I enjoy the fields – vineyards – almost as much as the wineries. Your photos have that postcard quality. I liked the first one of the barrels as the angle was very creative. Thanks for sharing another outstanding winery! Have a good weekend! I hope it drys out here a bit. Another of my pomegranate trees in the back yard has fallen almost to the ground because of all the rain. We will have to pull it back with ropes and tie it to the fence. The other one survived so far. Chac has been far too generous!

    • Yes, Jo Nell the vineyards in this area are so beautiful and peaceful, we so enjoyed the drive. We have had rain all night long again! I think your pagan celebration this year has really gotten the attention of Chac…..he certainly is giving us the goods! I hope your tree survives.

  3. I have found Narnia. I have summoned the winged horse to fly to The Carneros Valley. Supreme joy to devour and sip every one of The Tin Man’s Words. Does everyone know how absolutely romantic these quiet, unassuming wineries are?? Our oldest granddaughter celebrated her wedding at a boutique winery (Norman Hardie Wines) in Prince Edward County, Ont. She was married surrounded by vineyards then we wined and dinned the night away on one long table slipped between the shining tanks of wine. XX V

    • Oh Virginia………we of kindred spirits know of these magical places. To be in these hallowed places where the mystery of water to wine takes place…… be quiet and listen to the exchange of the sugar molecule to the alcohol molecule, from the sweet fruit to the sublime essence………it is a magical place. It is almost as if one is sitting, surrounded by the great towers of the mighty Oz, with all the huffing and puffing whilst one trembles awaiting a word from Truman……..ahhheemmm………Oz from behind the curtain…..oh. you. know. I. love. you..

  4. This took me right back to my last vineyard visit in Montefalco, Italy. Like you, we had a private tour – only because nobody else turned up! And – horror of horrors – I only got to sniff the wines as I was driving. Torture indeed. Just as well we bought some samples which I was able to appreciate!

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