During one of my many visits to the Napa Valley, Brett and I accidentally stumbled upon Waterstone Wines while at the Taste of Oxbow Center in Downtown Napa. We had finished a delightful lunch at the new Taylor’s Refresher and were stopping in at Gustavo Thrace across the street when I spotted a sign for Mahoney’s tasting room, whose wines I’ve tried several times. After finishing our visit to Gustavo Thrace, I brought my husband next door to Mahoney to try their Syrah I love so much. Turns out, the tasting room features wines from both Mahoney and Waterstone. Although we had to be up in Calistoga for a cooking demonstration in 2 hours, I certainly was not going to miss an opportunity to try some new wines!
Waterstone Wines and Mahoney are separate wineries, but they share the tasting room space. Not a bad idea given the cost of real estate in Napa and it is a great way to get more exposure for both wineries. I have to say – I was very impressed with all the Waterstone Wines we tried. My favorite by far was their 2004 Reserve Cabernet. This wine is very complex – from the subtle oak nose and the instant burst of fruit on the palette, to the smooth, long, lingering finish.
Who is behind Waterstone Wines?
Waterstone Winery is a collaboration between winemaker Philip Zorn and wine executive Brent Shortridge. Formed in 2000, this is still a relatively new and up and coming player in the field of longtime wine greats. Their vision for Waterstone was simple and proved to be “fruitful” – make luxury wines at affordable prices.
Using their network of Napa Valley contacts, Zorn and Shortridge focused on the wine making process itself versus searching for land and facilities. Using intelligent sourcing resources, they neither own vineyards nor facilities where the wine is made.
Types of Wines Offered by Waterstone Winery
At the time of my visit, Waterstone was offering:
- Pinot Noir
- Rose of Cabernet Sauvignon
- Cabernet Sauvignon
Their vast experience and directed focus on the Napa Valley viticultural nuances have resulted in a superb offering of wines. Although every wine we tried could’ve easily come home with us – the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve is my current favorite, hands down. We are not the only ones who think this wine is a great find – the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve received 91 points from Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
Taste at Oxbow: Downtown Napa Tasting Room
The tasting room has a really modern design, with more classic wine country touches throughout. The tasting room was designed with green in mind and features sustainable elements – chemical free paints, energy efficient light fixtures, and organic retail items.
To taste wines here, you pay either $10 for four wines, or you can even order by the glass!
The tasting room is located at:
708 First Street (corner of McKinstry Street)
Hours: Sun – Thurs: 12pm – 7pm and Fri-Sat: 12pm – 9pm
Mahoney Vineyards: www.mahoneyvineyards.com
Waterstone Winery: www.waterstonewines.com
Taste at Oxbow Center: www.tasteatoxbow.com