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The Rise of the Valley

How a blind tasting in Paris, France turned Napa Valley into one of the most celebrated wine regions in the world.

It’s no longer shocking that Napa Valley wines often rank superior to French wines. But in 1976, it was the tasting heard ‘round the world that crowned Napa a king among wine regions.  

After visiting Napa Valley, a British-born winemaker named Steven Spurrier selected six Chardonnays and six Cabernet Sauvignons to compete in The Paris Tasting. The judges were the most prominent French wine experts of the day. As it was a blind tasting, there was no way of knowing which wines were American and which were French.  

Though up against the best French wines that year, two Napa Valley wines (one red, one white) took top honors. This tasting, later coined “The Judgment of Paris,” launched the California wine industry into legendary status and made Napa Valley winemaker Mike Grgich a star (his Chardonnay took top prize). At the time, there were around 67 wineries in the region; today there are over 400.  

The Barrel Room is the proud home to a selection of Napa Valley wines, many ranked 90pts. and higher by renowned wine critics.

Experience a Taste of Napa with Jayson by Pahlmeyer

An Audacious Dream

The Pahlmeyer story begins with an audacious dream given life through the dedication and hard work of an inspired Napa Valley visionary:
Jayson Pahlmeyer.