I recently visited Del Dotto’s vineyard in St. Helena, a favorite stop when I am visiting Napa. If you’ve never been, let me tell you about it. This place is a Magnificently classy over the top Tuscan Palace complete with a temperate wine cave where their barrels are stored during the aging process. Why a cave? Because Wine caves naturally provide both high humidity and cool temperatures, which are key components to the proper storage and aging of wine.
Now, if you have never tried Del Dotto wine, I highly recommend it, they have some stunningly flavorful reds and delightfully crisp whites. If you are traveling to Napa Valley, This is one vineyard you don’t want to miss.
Cave Tour & Barrel Tasting
When visiting, make sure you call ahead to Del Dotto’s Vineyard and get a reservation to take the cave tour and barrel tasting. This is an incredible experience that is not like other wine tastings, you will be sampling wine that has not been bottled yet, right out of the barrel as its aging! You need about an hour to do the tour and you will not be disappointed.
We all know that it takes a lot to stand apart from the crowd, and there are a couple things that make this place special. First off, it’s a Tuscan Palace! That means amazing art, unique furniture, stunning tile work… you name it. But what makes their wine so special? Well, Pinot Noir originated in France and there is one particular vine in France that is extremely old and has won more awards than any other Pinot vine. Now these vines are considered very protected and priceless, but some years ago smugglers would cut a piece of the vine and bring it to the United States to be cloned, these were referred to as Suitcase Clones. One of those clones was planted on a Vineyard that Dave Del Dotto purchased and he painstakingly revived the uniquely flavorful clone. This rare vine is now the base of the Del Dotto Pinot Noir 828 and I highly recommend you give it a try. There really is no other Napa Pinot that compares. What will this taste of classic fermented heaven cost you, oh about $125 a bottle for the Family Reserve Blend which is 50% 828.
Now what does this all have to do with late night infomercials???
Well, you might not know his, but Dave Del Dotto made his fortune selling the “Cash Flow System” for real estate investing in the mid 80’s and early 90’s on late night TV. He also authored the book “How to Make Nothing But Money: Discovering Your Hidden Opportunities for Wealth”. Del Dotto often shot his infomercials from locations in Hawaii with his students. As a self-proclaimed expert, he would give advice on how to make money through investing in real estate. Dave Del Dotto had associates sell his book and tape programs to audiences throughout North America. People who bought the course would then be invited to weekend seminars. It must have worked well for him, because Dave used the money he earned from investing in real estate and teaching others how to do the same, to invest in his vineyard that now makes some of the best wines in Napa Valley!