Nestled among the rolling vineyards of Carneros, just five miles from downtown Napa, lies Etude Wines. Established in 1982, Etude was founded on the philosophy that winemaking begins in the vineyard long before harvest and that superior grape growing diminishes the need for intervention by the winemaker – resulting in authentic varietal expression. This ethos remains unwavering as the winery continues to build upon its established legacy of both exemplary Pinot Noir as well as elegant Cabernet Sauvignon.
Jon Priest, Senior Winemaker
Jon Priest has a passion for wine, perhaps most notably Pinot Noir. It should come as no surprise then, that he views
patience as a duty, not a virtue, as the nuanced grape requires a skillful hand and total commitment. His style as a winemaker is to work closely and collaboratively with his viticulture team, bringing tangible meaning to the elegant notion that wines are made not in the winery, but in the vineyard itself. For more than a decade, Jon has fashioned Etude wines with a simple creed: inspired winegrowing diminishes the need for a winemaker to intervene in the cellar. Whether sourcing from the estate Grace Benoist Ranch in Sonoma’s Los Carneros, or vineyards like Fiddlestix and North Canyon in famed growing regions of California’s Central Coast, Jon’s focus is on carefully extracting the very best from the vineyard. This practice is thoughtfully revealed in every glass of Etude wine.
A Model in Sustainability
Etude is the recent recipient of the 2018 International Best of Wine Tourism Award in the category of sustainability as well as one of the original recipients of Napa Green certification – and we can see why. The winery and estate vineyard, Grace Benoist Ranch, are farmed and operated with the goal of minimizing impacts to the environment, neighbors and community. In the development of the vineyards at Grace Benoist Ranch, native oak and bay trees were retained to protect nearby waterways. Twelve miles of wildlife corridors were incorporated in the planning of the vineyard planting to preserve riparian habitats and the natural migration of wildlife. Naturally occurring wetlands were protected and an erosion control plan was implemented to protect nearby waterways. Mindful of their roles as stewards of this special land, Etude strictly adheres to sustainable agricultural practices that enable them to farm in concert with the surrounding environment. At the winery, solar panels supply about a third of Etude’s energy needs, recycled water is used for landscape irrigation and employees manage a composting and recycling program which diverts a large percentage of waste away from landfills. The winery crew also takes pride in their employee cultivated garden, with a portion of the produce donated to the Napa Food Bank. Always looking toward the future, the Etude winemaking team strives for the best and most responsible practices in their vineyard and is constantly seeking new approaches toward excellence and sustainability.
Signature Tasting Experiences
Pinot Noir expresses its origin to a degree that no other varietal does. The word terroir may be distilled to mean a true sense of place – including the local traditions, the soil itself, a region’s climate and the terrain – each of these attributes, ultimately, affecting not only the taste of a wine, but the overall experience of it. Embark on a sensory journey with Etude’s “Study of Pinot Noir,” an exploration of five distinct Pinots from five distinct growing regions, including the estate vineyards in Carneros, Sonoma Coast, Willamette Valley, New Zealand and Santa Barbara County. All of these regions present unique growing challenges and noteworthy traits – each wine is carefully finessed by Senior Winemaker Jon Priest.
Etude’s newly unveiled experience, “Cabernet Focus” showcases handcrafted Cabernet Sauvignon from several unique vineyards, each representing prestigious sub-appellations of Napa Valley. All of these vineyard sites are carefully selected so each wine may, ultimately, exude the distinct attributes of each district. Delight in a flight of four signature Cabernets, each from the Napa Valley, St. Helena, Rutherford and Oakville AVAs. Each tasting is conducted in a semi-private, seated experience in the distinctive “Angels’ Loft” space overlooking the working winery below.
The next time you’re in Napa, consider visiting Etude Wines to experience their friendly atmosphere, distinctive wines and their impressive integration of sustainable practices.
The Study of Pinot Noir
Pinot Noir expresses the place it was grown to a degree that no other wine grape can. Experience how terroir influences the aromas and flavors of this delicate and popular varietal. Taste five Pinot Noirs from five distinct growing areas including the Estate Vineyards in Carneros, Sonoma Coast, Willamette Valley and Santa Barbara County, all made by Etude Winemaker, Jon Priest, in a semi-private, seated experience in the Heirloom Room.
$60 per person | $48 wine club members
Offered daily at 10am, 1pm and 3pm. Reservations are required.
Enjoy a flight of five critically acclaimed wines. The Etude Tasting offers you the option to choose between the Winemaker’s Selection and Collector’s tasting flights and takes place at the main tasting bar.
$25 per person
Complimentary for wine club members and up to three guests
Advanced reservations available, but not required.