Napa Valley Winery Honored with Global Award

Conn Creek Winery takes


11/20/2010 - Napa, CA--The Napa Valley's Conn Creek Winery has been awarded the world's "Most Innovative Wine Tourism Experience" during the 2011 Best Of Wine Tourism awards gala at the Great Wine Capitals Global Network (GWCGN) Annual Meeting in Christchurch, New Zealand.

"At Conn Creek we pride ourselves in offering outstanding Napa Valley wines and a world-class experience to our guests," said Conn Creek Hospitality Manager Paul Asikainen. "It's an honor to have been recognized for our success among a group of such esteemed wineries from around the globe."

Nearly forty years after its founding, Conn Creek is focused on what Napa Valley does best: Cabernet Sauvignon and other Bordeaux-style varietals that capture the "Best of Napa Valley" and provide winemaker Mike McGrath with an unparalleled palette from which to blend each wine and vintage. The original Mediterranean-style winery contains an AVA Barrel Room (AVA is an acronym for American Viticultural Area, a federally recognized wine-growing region--or appellation--that indicates the geographic location of the vineyard sources.)where its signature Barrel Blending Experience is offered, a one-of-a-kind seminar in which participants taste barrel samples of Cabernet Sauvignon from nearly all of the Napa Valley's 15 sub-appellations - along with other Bordeaux varietals - before blending their own bottle to take home. It's a chance to play winemaker for a day and appreciate the skill and art that goes into crafting world-class wine.

"Conn Creek's innovative AVA Barrel Room is a not-to-be-missed experience that provides both locals and visitors the unique opportunity to literally taste the diversity of the Napa Valley's varied soils and climates. The Napa Valley is truly extraordinary that it can produce wine of such incredible diversity in such a compact region," said Clay Gregory, President and CEO of the Napa Valley Destination Council.

Conn Creek Winemaker Mike McGrath added, "Our goal in creating the Conn Creek AVA Room was to provide an unforgettable and unique wine experience. It's a thrill to be recognized for reaching this goal and we're proud to contribute to the Napa Valley's reputation as a premier wine destination."

Conn Creek Winery joins eight other winners who were chosen by an international jury from 59 nominees, all locally awarded "Best Of" winners. The nine participating cities and wine regions of GWC gathered a total of 317 applications, with 80% of entries coming from new participants this year.

The additional 2011 "Best Of" Wine Tourism Award winners are:

Wine Oil Spa Hotel Villa de Laguardia, set in the vineyards in a medieval town in the heart of the Rioja (Wine Tourism Services)

Chateau Paloumey in the Haut Medoc, that regularly exhibits paintings and sculptures (Art & Culture)

Steenberg, one of the competition's top-line international winners, winner of two categories in South Africa, was awarded the global Wine Tourism Services prize

Yealands Estate in the South Island's Marlborough region, New Zealand's largest carbon-neutral certified winery that made international headlines for using miniature sheep to keep the vineyard's grass and weeds in check (Sustainable Wine Tourism category)

Villa Vignamaggio, one of the oldest wine estates in the heart of Chianti Classico between Florence and Siena, dating back to the 15th century Renaissance (Architecture, Parks and Gardens)

The Hyatt Regency Mainz on the banks of the Rhine River in Mainz that integrates a 19th century building with 21st century architecture (Accommodation)

Bodega Diam Andes, a member of the high-profile Clos de los Siete partnership of wineries in Mendoza, whose driving force is French winemaker Michel Rolland (Architecture, Parks and Gardens)

Porto's Quinta Aveleda, a 300-year-old family-owned estate and one of Portugal's leading producers (Architecture, Parks & Gardens)

About the Great Wine Capitals Global Network
Founded in 1999, the Great Wine Capitals dGlobal Network is an alliance of nine internationally renowned wine regions--Bordeaux, France; Bilbao-Rioja, Spain; Cape Town, South Africa; Christchurch-South Island, New Zealand; Florence, Italy; Mainz-Rheinhessen, Germany; Mendoza, Argentina; Porto, Portugal; and San Francisco-Napa Valley, USA. The international Best Of Wine Tourism awards serve as an industry benchmark for excellence and recognize leading wineries and wine-tourism related businesses within each Great Wine Capital that have distinguished themselves in areas such as innovation, service and sustainable practices. For more information visit

Allison Lane Simpson
Napa Valley Destination Council

Contact: Terry Hall, Communications Director 707-968-4217