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Napa Valley wineries open cellars for online sale

From 30-year-old Zinfandel to rare varietal bottlings, the two-day sale has been organised by Napa Valley Vintners.

More than 300 wines have been listed by Napa Valley Vintners for its ‘Open the Cellar‘ online sale, which is designed to showcase bottles being sold direct by individual producers.

It was due to run from 10am Pacific Daylight Time (PDT) on Tuesday 14 April to 23:59 PDT the next day.

Frog’s Leap’s Zinfandel 1991 and Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon 1996 were the two oldest wines featured, listed on the estate’s website at $115 and $239 per bottle respectively.

There were also library vintages from several producers from the early 2000s.

With tasting rooms closed due to public health measures designed to slow the spread of coronavirus, Covid-19, online sales offer a potential revenue source for Napa Valley’s wineries.

Alongside library vintages, the Open the Cellar sale highlights wines being produced in relatively small quantities that are generally only sold direct by the estate.

For example, these include Corison’s Helios Sunbasket Vineyard’ Cabernet Franc 2016 or Joseph Phelps’ Viognier from the 2018 crop.

Not every library wine listed was necessarily unavailable at US retailers, based on Wine-Searcher results, but Napa Valley Vintners said the wines being offered had limited availability – whether due to age, small production, or both.

Buyers would also get bottles direct from winery cellars, which is seen by collectors as a guarantee of top quality storage conditions.

Teresa Wall, senior director of marketing communications, said, ‘One of the unique aspects of our valley is the camaraderie amongst our vintners. With their tasting rooms being closed it’s had a significant impact on their businesses. In response to this, we came up with the idea to bring our members together to create a special wine offer.’

The full list of wines in the sale can be viewed here.

See also: 

Top US restaurants sell rare Burgundy and Napa wines to boost revenue

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