Winter is in full force at Far Niente. In other parts of the country, that may mean feet of snow and gray days, but for us, winter so far this year translated to clear, cold days and nights.
If you've visited Far Niente in the spring or summer, you likely remember the lush gardens, including the lovely weeping willow by the pond. As you can see in the image above, our willow is in winter repose. Many of our trees have taken on a sculptural appearance, and while it isn't the same colorful abundance we enjoy in the warmer months, there is a beauty here, too.
Our pond is a point of attraction not only for guests' photo opportunities but also for a variety of birds–ducks, geese, the occasional Great Blue Heron–stopping by on their way to somewhere else. These birds are notoriously shy so aren't as likely to pose for photo opps.
We hope you are enjoying winter wherever you are and that you are able to visit us soon. As you can see, January can be a perfectly lovely time to soak up some "Dolce Far Niente."
Our first event of the year is fast approaching—and some say it’s our best event. Each February we release our newest Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon. This year, we’re unveiling the 2010 vintage on February 2.
Guests journey through the wine caves, tasting the newest release as well as select Cabernets from our Cave Collection. You will also have the opportunity to meet Winemaker Nicole Marchesi as she pours barrel samples of the 2011 Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon.
Proprietress Beth Nickel and President & CEO Larry Maguire will also be there to sign your big bottle purchases, so be sure to say hello!
For information, click here—or call (707) 944-2861.
27 2012on December
at 4:19 pm
Here's a quick look back at 2012–a year that brought us a bountiful harvest, the release of our 2009 Cabernet Sauvnignon and 2011 Chardonnay, and the opportunity to spend time with so many of our friends, old and new, at our special events.
2009 Cabernet Release Day (photos by Robb McDonough)
Aaron Fishleder and Peggy Alamano poured older vintages in our Cave Library.
The limited edition Arvid Case contains two bottles each of the 2005, 2006 and 2007 Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon as well as a signed and numbered Arvid giclee, all packaged in a stunning black lacquer box. (Please call the winery at (707) 944-2861 with inquiries.)
Katherine Thomason poured the newly released 2009 Cabernet.
Sights Around the Winery (winery photos)
Each spring, tulips bring bright pops of color to the Far Niente landscaping. It's something we look forward to every year.
And with the washing of the bins, Harvest 2012 was on its way!
With the first bin of 2012 Far Niente Chardonnay, we gathered with Father Charles Garrity from the Carmelite Monastary next door for a harvest blessing and toast.
Hand sorting 2012 Far Niente Cabernet
Beth Nickel joined the crew for a much-deserved pizza party.
Renowned violinist Joshua Bell, Beth Nickel and Larry Maguire–a beautiful summer evening of wine, music and food.
Far Niente Holiday Reception (photos by Nanci Kerby)
We turned the Carriage House into a festive venue for wine, food and mingling.
The 2011 Far Niente Chardonnay started the party off right.
Far Niente Winemaker Nicole Marchesi and Wine Club Manager Julie Zanze poured 2009 Far Niente Cabernet.
For more images from this event, view our Facebook album.
See you in 2013!
I was recently asked what my favorite aspect of winemaking is. Maybe the obvious answer is, “Well, I like wine”—a fair enough answer but not really a good enough answer, in my mind. After all, so much of our time and energy is spent at work, isn’t it important to understand why it can fulfill us? So, I thought about it, and I’ve been listening to lectures on philosophy lately, so I channeled my inner ancient Greek and thought really hard about it.
I love the puzzle-solving aspect of making wine—the chance to figure out the best way to get from point A (the grapes) to point B (the wine). How do I go about expressing the full potential of each vineyard block? This requires the ability to plan ahead and think things through as well as physically bring these plans to fruition. And I like the opportunity to use my powers of reason and rationality as well as my instinctual and sensorial knowledge to make decisions. (Plato and Aristotle, are you listening?)
And after all this thinking and doing, what I ultimately love about this job is that I get to be involved in making a product that brings people such joy. Wine has the ability to bring people together in simple celebration and help to make memories. It can be shared in friendship and love, and I can’t help but be grateful knowing that my efforts each day have the potential to offer such pleasure. How very Epicurean!
17 2012on December
at 2:17 pm
We like to kick off the December holidays with a party for our wine club members here at Far Niente, and we did just that on December 8. Starting in the Carriage House with 2011 Far Niente Chardonnay, guests then mingled among the classic cars and enjoyed 2000, 2006 and 2009 Far Niente Cabernet Sauvignon along with an array of cheese and charcuterie and passed hors d’ oeuvres.
Desserts and Dolce polished off the evening in the Great Hall, decked for the holidays. A crackling fire, colorful sweets from our chef and 2007 Dolce made the space cozy indeed. As an extra treat, we served Dolce eggnog—yes, you read that right! Some of you asked for the recipe, which we’ve shared below.
For more images from the event, take a look at our event album on Facebook.
4 cups milk
5 whole cloves
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 egg yolks
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups Dolce
4 cups light cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Combine milk, cloves, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and cinnamon in a saucepan. Heat over the lowest setting for 5 minutes. Slowly bring milk mixture to a boil and remove from heat.
In a large bowl, combine egg yolks and sugar. Whisk together until fluffy. Whisk hot milk mixture slowly into the eggs. Pour mixture into saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly for 3 minutes, or until thick. Do not allow mixture to boil. Strain to remove cloves and allow to cool for about an hour.
Stir in Dolce, cream, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract and nutmeg. Refrigerate overnight before serving.
Yields 12 8-ounce servings
A behind-the-scenes peek at Far Niente and the fine Cabernet and Chardonnay we produce here in Oakville.
- Cabernet Release Day (1)
- Cabernet Wine Club (1)
- Cheese (1)
- Dolce Napa Valley (13)
- Far Niente Cabernet (34)
- Far Niente Cave Collection (11)
- Far Niente Chardonnay (25)
- Far Niente Events (7)
- Far Niente Gardens (17)
- Far Niente Vineyards (1)
- Far Niente Wine Club (2)
- Food (1)
- Harvest 2011 (6)
- Holiday (1)
- Napa Chardonnay (1)
- Napa Events (3)
- Napa Valley Life (1)
- News (1)
- Nickel & Nickel (2)
- Pairing (3)
- Spotlight (1)
- Travel (1)
- Uncategorized (7)
- Vineyards (4)
- Visit Far Niente (16)
- Weather (4)
- Wildlife (1)
- Wine Pairing (6)
- Winemaking (8)