If you want true champagne, you need to go to that region of France to find it, but you don’t need to look any further than California’s Napa for some of the world’s best sparkling wine.
Domaine Chandon, in Napa’s Yountville, is actually owned by the same company that makes such classic champagne as Dom Perignon, Veuve Clicquot and Krug, so they certainly know what they are doing when it comes to producing bubbly. The wines here, however, can stand on their own without any help from their French cousins.
Domaine Chandon has been in California since 1973. This winery is one of the most consistent stops in the valley and receives about 250,000 visitors a year.
You will find a large selection of standard sparkling wines at Domaine Chandon, including the Brut Classic, but try some of the less known varieties, like the Chandon Rose, the Chandon Sparkling Red or the Carneros Vintage Brut, which is only made when the year’s estate vintage warrants it.
Though Domaine Chandon is known more for its sparkling wines, they do also have some excellent still ones. The Carneros Reserve Pinot Noir is a rich wine, full of fruit and even better with age. You will find both sparkling and still Chandon wines that are only available at the winery so it’s definitely worth a trip.
Domaine Chandon is the only winery in Napa that has a full service restaurant on the premises. étoile was also one of the first fine dining establishments in California Wine Country. It is a French restaurant and has received major accolades of its own.
The company’s wines are showcased here, though the only bubbly you will find is from California, there’s no need for champagne at this top restaurant.
It’s definitely a special occasion restaurant that will set you back a few hundred for dinner, but it’s worth it if you are looking for an extra special meal within the beautiful gardens, complete with unique wind sculptures, in the Chandon estate.
The restaurant is so good in fact that it has been recognized by the prestigious Michelin Guide, who has honored it with the rare gift of three stars.
If you’d like to visit the Domaine Chandon winery for a tour and tasting, go to their website for hours of operation and tour details. You can also find information there on étoile, where reservations will most definitely be needed.