is a full service wine shop with a tasting bar located on the corner of First and Silverado Trail east of downtown Napa. They used to be located across the street but with the construction of the Ritz Carlton hotel they were forced to move and are now in a larger facility. Look for a curved building with a 50′s diner style flair as the front facade. This wine shop has historical roots in Napa that go way back, all the way to the late 1940′s. A gentleman by the name of Joseph Vallerga, for which JV takes its name, opened Vallerga’s Market near the Silverado Trail on 1st Street. Business grew and in the ensuing years Joseph opened additional liquor stores. The original store was Vallerga’s Market until 1983 when it became the focal point and distribution center for their other stores. Fortunately management decided to open the warehouse to the public which served not only locals but also tourists coming to the valley. During the actual “warehouse” days, no shelves existed in the store as boxes of wine were stacked everywhere!
For overall selection and service this is the wine shop to definitely hit during your time in the city of Napa. They are Napa’s oldest wine distributor and definitely the largest wine shop in Napa Valley. Their selection is fantastic and they carry wine from many Napa area wineries even those who have very limited productions. Most of these “small” wineries are not open to the public at all and this is a great place to find their wine as well as possibly taste. The different varietals and types of wine are clearly labeled making it easy to track down the wine of your choice. You enter the shop and all you see are cases and cases of wine bottles stacked in all directions. Besides their huge wine collection they also have large collection of “spirits” for sale. Wine lovers sometimes need to take a break from drinking or tasting wine and this is where JV’s large selection of beers comes into play! They have over 500 different beers for sale.
The sommeliers at JV taste all wines represented in the store and anything that does not meet their standard is not sold. This is equivalent to about 5000 tastings each year. Their tasting counter is open from 1 to 6pm daily and wines from 40 boutique wineries (who do not offer tastings anywhere else) are rotated daily so you never know what will be available for tasting on any given day. The selection is not only from Napa but Internationally as well and also includes dessert wines. A certified Sommelier is always on site to help answer any wine related questions you may have as well as make recommendations for specific types of wines. They will only make recommendations for wine they have personally sampled.
One real highlight of JV Wine & Spirits is their Friday Night Winemaker Tasting. It is a shame that most wine tourists coming to the Napa area will never find out about this unique experience. For a very small tasting fee, you get to drink world-class wines, meet the winemakers and enjoy appetizers and other snacks. Visit their website for a list of upcoming vintner appearances. Internet access is also available on site for wine education use. Along with other tasting rooms in the Napa downtown area they are a member of Taste Napa Downtown. Visit: www.jvwine.com
NOTE: This review has been archived.
REASON: Their wine shop and tasting room went out of business after many years. At last update, the building remains empty.
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