LOVE it here! ‘nuf said; However, there’s a right way to do this one.
After working in the industry for so long and never finding myself in need of purchasing wine, I finally gave in and joined their Chateau Society wine club. Not only do they have 4 tiers to choose from (so you can get as little or as much as you’d like on a quarterly schedule) but the perks pay for themselves if you take advantage of them. I’m splitting my membership with my friend Randy and between the two of us we get more than our fair share of caviar and bubbles on the regular WITH a significant discount. Our membership also allows us prime seating (away from the heavy flow of tourists….again I say, on the regular), a couple complimentary flights or full glasses, and about 2 tours a year. Both patios are loaced with chairs and chaises galore and large umbrellas to boot but if you find yourself here on a day that’s a little too hot the Club Room never fails.
Domaine Carneros specializes in “Traditional Method” sparkling wines, a rare breed in the New World. So classified because it’s the same, original method they use in Champagne, France (I always suggest that when looking for a quality sparkling wine you’ll want to look for this on the label, in whatever language your bottles are coming from) – more on that spiel here. The estate produces classical versions of sparkling wine as well as still Chardonnay and Pinot Noir with grapes coming mostly from the Carneros region. And because I’m a purist I’m a big fan of these wines, however, sparkling is what they do best.
Overall my suggestion is come with some friends, make a reservation and book a tour if you’re curious to experience the production of “Metodo Traditional” (Spain/Cava, wink) and see what it takes to make quality sparkling wine in California. Weekdays are going to be more comfortable and keep in mind it’s another convenient winery to get to so if you want a more remote experience this isn’t your place. You’ll have a great time if you stop in and while you’re imbibing consider joining the club for instant perks, you’ll want to come back!