Even though I have been to Napa numerous times and I have toured countless wineries, I had never been to Beringer until this trip. I’m so glad that I finally toured the estate with people who had never been to Napa. Just like the Empire State building, Beringer is one of those places that everyone knows about, but locals rarely revisit (even though I’m no longer a local).
Dug by hand eight stories underground, the caves are now reinforced with steel and concrete for stability, but the age old wisdom of temperature control underground is a natural solution to the summer temperatures of over 90 degrees in the Summer (it was 94F when we were on the tour).
Take the tour of the caves and see how they did things before electricity (and refrigeration)! The barrels are from before prohibition, and the way the caves were built was an ingenious solution to the logistics of pressing grapes and keeping the temperatures cool.
The grounds include working vineyards and each of the rows of vines is labeled with the variety of grape.
The Rhine House at the entrance is the original home of the Beringer family and some of the woodwork and stained glass are original parts of the house (now a gift shop).
The gardens are spectacular, with huge trees, bushes, and flowers, all perfectly arranged in a kaleidoscope of colors around the manicured lawn, but my favorite was the fountain which offered a refreshing respite of soothing sounds and a vision of relief from the hot sun to visitors.