The story of Frog’s Leap winery begins in 1884. In this year, the Adamson winery
was built. In 1994, this building was renovated and became the home of Frog’s
Leap Napa Valley. Surrounding the historic red barn are 40 acres of organically
farmed vineyards. Beyond this land, Frog’s Leap winery also owns 88 acres and
farms an additional 100 acres in the Rutherford appellation. The Williams family
founded the winery, and they are passionate about producing wines that show
off the regional character of the grapes. A laid-back hospitality is present
in the wine, from the playful name to the people behind creating it.
Wines at Frog’s Leap are all made from organically grown grapes, and traditional winemaking techniques are then employed. A passion for the pleasure of wine is clearly highlighted at Frog’s Leap Napa Valley, where the Williams family seeks to showcase the three characteristics of the local terroir: soil, climate, and circumstance. The grapes and wine are handled minimally, allowing natural processes to create the flavor of the wines. Aged in oak barrels, John Williams says these wines are made to satisfy.
The best way to enjoy the wines at Frog’s Leap is with a guided tour of the vineyards. This tour will be much more casual and laid-back than other Napa Valley wine tours. A seated tasting on the winery’s wrap-around porch features four wines. Visitors are welcome at Frog’s Leap Napa Valley from Monday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm, and the tasting will follow a guided tour of the vineyards and winery. A small tasting fee of $15 will seem very reasonable while you are gazing at the vineyard’s gardens and the Mayacama Mountains from the porch.
A tour of the Frog’s Leap winery takes about one hour, and it provides an understanding of how the grapes are grown and the wine is made. The tours are limited to ten people each, so it is wise to call ahead for availability. Private tasting parties can also be arranged for groups of more than six people. Call ahead or e-mail to enquire about the availability of a private tour and tasting. Frog’s Leap is located in Rutherford California, between the towns of Yountville and St Helena, making it an excellent stop on a scenic wine-tasting trip around Napa Valley.
The wines at Frog’s Leap all benefit from the best organic fertilizers. Taking care of the vineyards is a year-round process, from pruning in the beginning of the year to mowing, planting, leafing, and finally harvesting. If you’re looking for a more personal way to enjoy a Napa Valley vineyard, join one of the small tour groups at Frog’s Leap. You won’t feel rushed along, a common occurrence during some of the tours of larger wineries. The opportunity to meet the winemaker and discuss his theories of winemaking will leave you with a better understanding of the passion of wine and a deeper appreciation for the creations of this lovely winery.