Surrounded by vineyards on the floor of the Napa Valley, the wide open views in every direction were the first thing I noticed arriving at B Cellars. The contemporary architecture of the dramatic winery building was the next. Open less than a year, this is a property that was designed to make a statement. I knew I was in for a wine country experience immediately upon arrival.
703 Oakville Cross Road
Oakville, CA 94562
advance reservation only
Oakville Trek $55 90 minutes
Beyond the Glass $75 120 minutes
Private Heritage Excursion $125 90 minutes
Chef’s Garden Pairing $125 120 minutes
Oakville is the tiniest of towns in the heart of the Napa Valley and B Cellars is on the Oakville Cross Road that connects Oakville to the Silverado Trail. What that translates to is one of the most beautiful scenic drives in the world just to arrive at the winery. Everywhere I looked there were vineyards and mountains. This is a side road so traffic was non-existent. (the Oakville Cross Road bridge is currently closed for repairs- come via Silverado Trail- also a gorgeous drive)
We spotted the bright red logo marker and knew we had arrived. A short drive onto the property brought us to accessible parking right in front of the Hospitality House.
The grounds were beautifully landscaped with whimsical statues, ornamental grasses, and fabulously hard-packed and paved pathways.
This is proof that flat can be grand! The Hospitality House is quite grand, yet there are no stairs anywhere in sight. The wide paved walkway is grand. The courtyard is grand. The massive glass entrance is grand. Architects everywhere take note! Inclusive design can be grand!
We were here for the Oakville Trek, a 90 minute experience that included the culinary gardens, crush pad, production facility, and wine caves, culminating in a seated wine tasting in the Hospitality House accompanied by “B-Bites” from the winery chef. Ryan Barney was to be our “Navigator”. Another couple joined our tour, but with the Oakville Trek limit of 5 people it was still very personal.
The architectural design theme of flat, wide, and accessible continued. Ryan took us through the production facility where he described the state-of-the-art equipment including concrete fermentation tanks and stainless steel tanks. We entered the newly bored portal to the wine cave with a flat threshold and wide door. We toured through the stacks of wine barrels where the pathway was flat and wide. Everything was accessible!
With the tour complete it was time for the wine and food pairing. What a delight! Our own personal table was set with an array of wine glasses and our first “B-Bite”. I was easily able to pull my scooter up to the table with plenty of space for my knees. We leisurely worked our way through 5 different pairings and each was perfection. The in-house chef sent out such creations as smoked trout, lamb kabob, duck egg ravioli, and grilled hangar steak. Come a little bit hungry! The wines we tasted were:
• 2012 Blend 23 (Chardonnay/Sauvignon Blanc/Viognier)
• 2012 Dutton Ranch Chardonnay
• 2010 Blend 24 (Cabernet Sauvignon/Sangiovese/Syrah)
• 2011 Caldwell Syrah
• 2011 Calistoga Cabernet Sauvignon
The grapes for these lovely wines are sourced from 18 of the region’s greatest vineyards so they can select the best grapes for each of their wines. Many of their wines are blends to create extra layers of flavor.
The accessibility tour is not complete without a visit to the restrooms. The Men’s and Women’s restrooms were beautifully appointed and accessible without fault. This is a “make or break” part of the experience for me, and these restrooms definitely made it.
B Cellars is all about hospitality, such that they even named their visitor center the “Hospitality House”. I felt the hospitality from the moment we arrived and throughout the entire tour and tasting. They have gone to great efforts to make this an experience to remember and they have achieved it. The accessibility features were seamlessly designed to create inclusivity for all. B Cellars is an incredible Wine Country Experience.
- 2 accessible parking spaces (1 van accessible)
- all entrances wide with flat thresholds
- no stairs anywhere on the tour
- spacious interiors and ample maneuverability space
- wide exterior paved or hard-packed pathways
- easy to open doors and a hospitality guide to open them
- accessible table seating for tasting
- accessible Men’s and Women’s restrooms
- roll-under sink
- low mirror
- soap, towels, towel disposal reachable from sink
- automatic water faucets
- easy to operate soap dispenser
- accessible toilet room with back and side grab bars
- roll-under sink
make an appointment for tastings
bring the right mobility equipment to go distances (though they may be providing a manual wheelchair)