Iconic Napa winery shifts to reservation-only to enhance experience
CALISTOGA, California, June 8, 2020 – Castello di Amorosa, Dario Sattui’s authentically built, 13th century Tuscan castle and winery- one of Napa Valley’s landmark destinations- is now open for visitors, as of June 6, 2020.
“In 2007 when I first lowered the drawbridge over the moat to welcome guests, I couldn’t have predicted how popular our winery would become,” Sattui explains. “And while times certainly have changed, I am excited to, once again, welcome guests at the drawbridge,” he adds.
“We have taken this time to fine-tune and enhance our visitors’ experience. The first new element of this is a new proprietary reservation-only online system. We are aiming to provide more intimate experiences for our guests,” explains winery President Georg Salzner.
Visitors can reserve to enjoy several types of experiences, which include General Admission & Reserve Wine Tasting, at $45, and the Diamond Estate Tour & Tasting, at $60.
To help ensure the safety of its guests and staff, the castle is incorporating the guidelines from the CDC and Napa County. “We are uniquely designed to comply with the new social distancing guidelines,” explained Salzner. The winery’s extensive grounds and courtyard and multiple tasting cellars offer open spaces which can accommodate visitors spaced according to the new regulations. The winery has meticulously integrated the safety guidelines to protect staff and guests, including mandatory symptom checks for all employees upon arrival, the requirement that all staff wear gloves and masks and the provision of hand sanitizers for staff and guests.
The team at the Castello, which encompasses 136,000 square feet, has spent the last several months doing extensive cleaning and some reconstruction to insure safety for its guests, as well as re-thinking traffic patterns for visitors. During the ‘down time’ of the last two months, the winery’s resident wildlife has been thriving. There is a new flock of baby wild geese. Giacomo, possibly the most photographed goat in the world, has been getting chubbier and is eager to welcome back lots of friendly faces as he patrols his territory.
The estate vineyards surrounding the castle are planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sangiovese and Primitivo. The vines are flowering and Vineyard Manager David Behar predicts another stellar Napa Valley vintage. “Grape growing and winemaking don’t ever take a break,” adds Salzner.
A new wine awaits the first guests: it will be the winery’s 2017 Los Carneros Pinot Noir, a classic, nuanced Pinot from the Castle’s estate vineyard in the cool-climate Los Carneros Napa Valley AVA.
One of Napa Valley’s landmark destinations, Castello di Amorosa was a labor of love for founder Dario Sattui. Castello di Amorosa incorporates five defensive towers with battlements, a Great Hall with a coffered ceiling featuring hand-painted frescoes, a chapel, drawbridge, dungeon, watch tower, torture chamber and secret passageways. Using medieval construction techniques, the Castello was built with antique bricks, roof tiles, hand-hewn timbers and doors, hand-forged iron gates, lamps and hardware imported from Europe, as well as over 8,000 tons of hand-chiseled local stone.
Located at 4045 Saint Helena Highway in Calistoga (94515), Castello di Amorosa is open by reservation only, at https://castellodiamorosa.com/tour-tasting2/. Castello di Amorosa’s wine are available only at the winery and from its website.