Whitehall Lane – whitehalllane.com

We’ve been to Whitehall Lane on more than one occasion and have enjoyed ourselves with each visit. The winery sits just feet from Highway 29 in Saint Helena and has a unique exterior (check out those upside down arched windows).

The tasting room is dimly lit with a tongue and groove beam ceiling and a chilled charcoal-colored concrete countertop. We’ve enjoyed a stand-up tasting here as well as a private club room tasting. The private tasting was great fun, especially since we were the only couple in the spacious, upstairs tasting room that overlooks the vineyard below. It includes a tour through the winemaking facility and we even got a quick handshake with the winemaker himself.

Our private tasting began with a Rosé and included three red wines in disguise. The wine educator was very knowledgeable and challenged us with a blind tasting experience. He asked us to identify which of the three wines were cabs and which was a merlot (Julie got them all right, earning her forever bragging rights).

The 2015 Cub Red Syrah Rosé was an incredible cherry tomato color with golden undertones and tasted crisp with flavors of green apple, grapefruit, and a splash of starfruit.

The blind tasting featured the 2012 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. Stone fruit dominates this wine, with bramble fruit coming in at a distant second.

The 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon was a dryer wine with hints of raspberry and chocolate-covered cherry.

The winner of the day was the 2013 Leonardini Vineyard Merlot. Scents of cherry and plum jam are apparent, but chocolate is the star of the show. We took this bottle home with us.

On a different visit we sampled equally enjoyable wines including the 2015 Sauvignon Blanc. This wine engages your entire palate with zesty margarita lime.

The 2006 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon brings to mind nutty raisin and had beautiful cascading legs that were sturdy enough to stand on.

The 2012 Millennium MM Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon from Rutherford featured vanilla, plum, and strong oak on the palate with a medium finish.

A stand-out wine was the 2012 Leonardini Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s a dark, polished wine with hints of black cherry and a short finish.

Whitehall Lane remains a favorite of these two amateur oenophiles. We think you’ll agree it makes for a fine tasting experience.

Tip: Engage the wine educators during your visit. They are kind, down to earth, and full of great information.