Olive Tree

Planting Olive Trees

Bradley Aden

May 31st, 2022

Our First Olive Trees

We are proud to announce the first planting of our Olive Trees surrounding the Castle in Napa Valley. Watch above as President Georg Salzner & vineyard manager David Bejar plant our first olive trees at The Castle! This continues our recent string of sustainability efforts at the Castle.

We planted 12 different varieties of Olive Trees surrounding Castello di Amorosa, these olive trees are known to make a superior olive for oil production. Many of these trees originate in Italy. We look forward to the first fully mature harvest in which we can produce our first olive oil.

Olive Tree

We are planting a total of 12 different olive tree varietals that surround the Castle. You can learn more about each specific type of Olive tree below.

Frantoio

If asked to pick our favorite olive in the bunch, that answer might just be the Frantoio olive. Frantoio Olive Oil is one of the most highly acclaimed oil varieties in the world, especially in the Tuscan regions of Italy. The olive boasts a stunningly dark, oval-shaped olive. Preferred picking time is early, while olives are still green and purple.

The flavor has been described as very fruity, notably aromatic and of high quality, with a stronger aftertaste than Leccino. The aftertaste has been described of almond and herbs.

This fast-growing Olive tree is known for its high yielding nature. They can reach a full grown height of 26 feet. It is known to produce plenty of plump medium-sized Olives, which are known to produce quality oil. They can also make a delicious treat when cured. These Olives are about 80% pulp, and they have a pleasant fragrance.

Olive Origin: Tuscany, Italy
Olive Color: Green-Purple, Purple-Black
Olive Pairing: Grilled Meat, Bruschetta, Legume & Vegetable Soups, Dressing Fresh Salads.
Olive Flavors: Fruity flavor with bitter and spicy notes. Aromas of fresh herb, tomato, lettuce, artichoke, apple, grain, rosemary, celery and almond.

Unique Traits of the Frantoio Olive

Most commonly the main component for a Tuscan style oil.
Consistently produces a high-yield, very fruity oil.
The medium size fruit ripens on the late side.
A self-compatible tree, but will benefit greatly from other pollinators.
One of the most popular olives in the world.
Grows More like Tree Than Bush

Leccino

Originated in Tuscany, grows very well in California and the northwest. Its olive oil flavor is delicate so it’s most commonly blended with Pendolino. But it’s also interplanted and blended with Frantoio, Coratina and Moraiolo to produce more flavor.

As mentioned above, Frantoio and Leccino cultivars are the principal raw material for Italian olive oils from Tuscany. Leccino has a very sweet and aromatic flavor.

A Small fruit with very small pit, it has a surprising amount of flesh. The fruit is purple-black, although it is advised to pick it when purple green at its optimal time. Oil volume is lower than other cultivars and delicate in flavor. The oil is mildly fruity and frequently blended with other cultivars’ oil. The delicate flavor can dissipate after time, as the oil has been known to have a short shelf life.

Olive Origin: Tuscany, Italy
Olive Color: Grey-Green
Olive Pairing: Cooked Fish, White Meats, Vegetables & Fresh Cheeses
Olive Flavors: The oil is very sweet and aromatic

Unique Traits of The Leccino Olive

Most commonly the main component for a Tuscan style oil.
Small Fruit
Short Shelf Life
Delicate Flavor
Commonly Used in Blends

Pendolino

Pendolino Olive Tree is an old Italian variety valued for its high fruit production as well as its crucial role as one of the best pollenizers for other olive varieties, often referred to as the universal pollenizers.

These slow growing trees can grow to about 20 feet tall in time. Pendolino is named for its pendulous branching characteristic, making it ideal for manual cultivation.

Its fruit size is generally larger than Frantoio but smaller than Leccino. It has a slightly lower oil content with relatively early ripening fruit. The flavors have been described as fruity and sweet upon entrance, while turning bitter and ending with a characteristic spicy. Notes of bitter almond and more lightly fresh grass and artichoke have been described.

Olive Origin: Italy
Olive Color: Grey-Green
Olive Pairing: Grilled Salmon, Risotto with Shrimp, Pasta, Bread, Vinaigrettes
Olive Flavors: Fruity and Sweet upon entrance, Bitter and Ending with a Spicy Kick. Notes of Bitter Almond, Grass & Aartichoke.

Unique Traits of The Pendolino Olive

The Universal Pollenizers
Early Ripening
Old Italian Varietal
High Production
Balanced Flavors

Maurino

The Maurino olive tree is Tuscan in origin. It’s a good pollinator but self-sterile so it needs another tree (often Frantoio, Leccino or Pendolino). Its fruit is small, but like the Pendolino cultivar, its fruit is abundant. Additionally, both cultivars actually look very similar in appearance and exhibit the graceful, pendulous branch form.

Prized for its sweet and delicate oil, as well as being tolerant of very low temperatures, it’s ideal for cooler climates and dense plantings. Small fruit with very small pit., It has a surprising amount of flesh. The oil is very sweet and aromatic. The shelf life is short.

Olive Origin: Tuscany, Italy
Olive Color: Grey-Green
Olive Pairing: Green Salads, Raw Vegetables,
Olive Flavors: The Oil Sweet and Aromatic

Unique Traits of The Maurino Olive

Tuscan Origin
Good Pollinator
Needs to Be Paired with other trees to survive. (often Frantoio, Leccino or Pendolino)
Small Fruit
Sweet & Delicate Oil
Short Shelf Life

Olive Tree Napa Valley

Mission

The Mission Olive Tree originated in California way back in 1769, where they were planted by Franciscan priests as they established Missions among El Camino Real. Popularity grew due to its growth in California over the years when interest in olives and olive oil increased. The Mission Olive Tree can grow up to 30 feet, with its olives maturing October through November.

The only American olive cultivar listed by the International Olive Council in its World Catalogue of Olive Varieties. After the Manzanilla and Sevillana olive varieties, it remains one of the more common cultivars in the state.

These medium olives can grow up to an inch-and-a-half and turn deep eggplant purple when mature. While the dark fruit is popular, the Mission is also harvested for it green fruit which is known for its wonderful, mild grassy flavor both in cured table olives and pressed to oil. Mission olives have a unique fruity flavor and scent. The fruit and oil pairs well with fish, chicken, or as a dip for freshly baked bread.

Olive Origin: California 1769
Olive Color: Deep Eggplant Purple – Blackish
Olive Pairing: Best Used with Bread, Fish or Chicken
Olive Flavors: Mild Grassy & Fruity Flavor

Unique Traits of The Mission Olive Oil

Endangered Varietal
Wonderful Fruit to Brine or Press for Oil
One of the Hardiest Olive Varieties
Attractive Specimen
Drought Tolerant
Widely Adaptable
Fragrant Spring Flowers
Mid Season Fruiting Time
Versatile Used for Olive Oil & Table Olives

Manzanilla

The Manzanilla is an ancient olive tree that have been grown since ancient times, they are known to thrive in the heat. Believed to be a native of the Mediterranean, the drought tolerant Manzanillo Olive can live for hundreds of years, enduring droughts, heat and poor soil conditions. Manzanilla olives are well known for its rich black olives that can be pickled or pressed for oil. They are known to have crisp texture and a slightly smoky, almond like flavor.

This Manzanillo has a slow growth rate and young trees may take time to develop substance. The tight growth pattern creates a fuller crown, making the Manzanillo Olive a popular shade tree in Southern California. It can grow up to 30 feet, so it is an ideal choice for almost any style architecture.
Easy to care for and very resilient, the evergreen Manzanillo Olive prefers deep rich soil, but it can tolerate stony, shallow soils as well.

Olive Origin: Mediterranean
Olive Color: Black – Green
Olive Pairing: Pair them with: Swiss, Manchego, or Gouda cheese; dry Spanish Cava or Fino. Olives themselves are often Suffed with a Creamy Blue Cheese, Pimentos, or Garlic.
Olive Flavors: Crisp Texture and a Slightly Smoky, Almond like Flavor.

Unique Traits of The Manzanilla Olive

Cold Hardy and Resistant to High Summer Heat
Drought Resistant
Versatile
Used for Table Fruit
Excellent Quality Fruit
Versatile Landscape Tree

Itrana

Native to the Italian region of Lazio (Lazio). The Itrana olive tree produces high quality black table olives and high quality extra virgin olive oil.
The oil is known for its intense and fruity flavor, with bitter and spicy feel. Aromas of cut grass are common with more subtle touches of artichoke or slight green almond feel.
The olives themselves are, asymmetrical and of medium size (3-5 grams). At harvest the olives are dark wine color, freckled with a whitish dusting. The oil is of good quality pleasing in taste and is noted for continually winning awards for taste.

Olive Origin: Lazio, Italy
Olive Color: Dark Wine Color & Green
Olive Pairing: Crusty Artisan Breads
Olive Flavors: Intense and Fruity Flavor, with Bitter & Spicy of Average Value. Aromas of Cut Grass are Common with Subtle Touches of Artichoke or Slight Green Almond Feel.

Unique Traits of the Itrana Olive

Resistant To High Heat & Cold
Italian Varietal
Green & Dark Producing Olives
Award Winning Oil Produced
Excellent Quality Fruit

Coratina

Coratina olive oil gets its name from its place of origin, a town in the Italian countryside known as Corato. This olive oil has a very fruity, tangy and bitter taste, so much so that traditionally this particular kind of olive oil has been used to cut other olive oils with a less marked flavor.

Depending on the climate, olive picking may go from early October to late January. The integrity of the fruit will determine a low acidity level, fruity notes and a high content of antioxidants in the final product.

The Coratina extra-virgin olive oil is characterized by the fruity notes of green olives, followed by sensations of freshly-cut grass and bitter almonds. By genetic makeup, Coratina is one of the olive cultivars that synthesize the highest content of phenolic compounds. Freshly-pressed, the Coratina olive oil may taste bitter and unbalanced, with a bit of a slightly sharp sensation. The high phenolic content, along with the triglyceride composition, contributes to the exceptional oxidation stability of the Coratina extra-virgin olive oil.

Olive Origin: Corato, Italy
Olive Color: Dark Red – Light Green
Olive Pairing: Used to Cut other Olive Oils with a Less Marked Flavor.
Olive Flavors: Fruity, Tangy and Bitter Taste

Unique Traits of the Coratina Olive

High Phenolic Acid Content, produces Incredibly Stable Oil that Oxidizes Slowly.
High Acidity Results in Sharp Oil that is Rich in Flavor and Displays a Sweet Aroma.
Can Produce in a Variety of Climates and Soil Conditions from Sandy Coastal Locations to Hot Deserts with Rocky Soils.
Minimal Watering Once Established.
Smaller Fruits

Manzanilla Olive Tree

Columella

Originating in France, Columella is known for its resistance to cold. When harvested green, Columella yields an aromatic, sweet and fruity oil with a good balance of bitter and pungent notes. Grassy and herbaceous flavors are enhanced by tropical and floral flavors.

Fruit ripening is medium early. Columella is unusual among the French cultivars normally grown in California in its suitability for early harvest. The fruit is fragile and prone to bruising; it can be damaged by windy storms as it is ripening, so an early harvest is advisable.

Olive Origin: France
Olive Color: Green
Olive Pairing: Fried Potatoes, Stir-Fry, Chocolate Ice Cream
Olive Flavors: Aromatic, Fruity, and Sweet Flavor, Balanced with Pungent and Bitter Flavors too.

Unique Traits of the Columella Olive

Adapts Well to Colder Weather
Versatile Smooth Taste
Fruit Can be Easily Damaged
Fruit is Fragile, Prone to Bruising

Cerignola

Cerignola olive tree (Oliva di Cerignola), is an Italian olive variety present in the Apulia region. Its origin is estimated in the XV century, when it was introduced by the Aragonese. The olive tree produces very large size olives, which are popular table olives.
Cerignola may offer the most beautiful and delicious olives of any tree. It ripens early and is generally brined soon after turning a celadon green. Drupes are large, nearly a half ounce of crisp, buttery meat.

The flavor of the Cerignola olive has been described as mildly tart and buttery. It is known for containing very balanced flavors, thus making it one of the most versatile olives.

Olive Origin: Apulia Region, Cerignola, Italy
Olive Color: Celadon Green
Olive Pairing: Pair up these buttery beauties with zippy hard cheeses, like Parmigiano-Reggiano, or mild and creamy mozzarella and Genoa Salami. Black varieties are great paired with smoked cheeses.
Olive Flavors: Mildly Tart and Buttery.

Unique Traits of The Cerignola Olive

Estimated Origins Go Back to The 15th Century.
Large Size Olives
Ripens Early
Versatile Olive Used for Both Oil Production or Table Olives
Balanced Flavors

Lucca

The Lucca Olive Tree is a high yielding tree, which is used for high amounts of olive oil. The Lucca Olive itself was developed at the University of California, Davis by Professor Hartman. These trees will grow beautifully in your yard, and will produce large quantities of olives.

It also has good frost resistance and is closely related to Frantoio olive. A vigorous variety well suited to planting in California. The oil produced from the Lucca has been described by tasters as having a sweet buttery flavor, and slightly bitter.

Olive Origin: California
Olive Color: Green
Olive Pairing: Used to cut other olive oils with a less marked flavor.
Olive Flavors: sweet buttery flavor, and slightly bitter.

Unique Traits of The Lucca Olive

Sweet, Buttery Flavor
Developed closely related to Frantic.
Developed by University Professor
High Yields

Hojiblanca

The name means “white leaf” and refers to the color of the back side of the leaves. This medium sized fruit generally ripens late and is very cold resistant. These trees are capable of adapting to extreme soils and climates. The fruits ripen very slowly and delay the harvest, a fact that leads to certain amount of “vecería”.

A balanced olive that has a wide range of flavors. The oil is not long lasting but is exceptional. The Hojiblanca olive is highly valued due to the excellent quality of its pulp and for its great rusticity.

The Hojiblanca is a prestigious varietal, currently in great demand especially in Spain due to the Hojiblanca extra virgin oil which can be extracted from its fruit, it is also widely used as a table olive.

On many occasions, the extracted oil is combined with other oils in order to improve the flavor and the oils properties. This oil is recommended by many specialists due to its excellent health reputation.

Olive Origin: Spain
Olive Color: Green
Olive Pairing: Red Apple Balsamic Vinegar, Sicilian Lemon White Balsamic Vinegar, Leafy Green Salads, Bitter Green Salads, Garden Salads, Raw Vegetables., Roasted/Grilled Veg, Broiled Fish.
Olive Flavors: Slightly sweet to start with a bitter taste of unripe fruits and an almond aftertaste

Unique Traits of The Hojiblanca Olive

Known for its health benefits
Great Demand
Versatile Olive Used for Both Oil Production or Table Olives
Late Ripening
Excellent Quality
Balanced Taste
Large Fruit

Olive Trees

Although these trees won’t be producing olives worthy of pressing into olive oil for at least five years, we do make Olive Oil exclusively from olives harvested at our own Morning Dew Ranch estate property in the Anderson Valley located in Mendocino County.

These mature olive trees grow on a small patch of sloped hillside adjacent to some of the Castello’s most prized Pinot Noir vines. These trees mature under the watchful eyes of both our Winemaker and Vineyard Manager.

This Morning Dew Ranch Olio Nuovo (which means, new oil) differs from your typical Olive Oil. Taken straight from the press, this freshly pressed oil has all the natural flavors left inside the oil. Cold Pressed under 50 degrees, harvested locally from the Castello’s own estate vineyard. Here at the Castle, we are one of the first in the Napa Valley to sell Olio Nuovo.

Olive Harvest
Olio Nuovo
Olive Tree


Disney's The Quest

Disney's The Quest

Bradley Aden

May 10th, 2022

Disney’s The Quest – Filmed on Location!

We are excited to announce the premiere of Disney’s The Quest on May 11th, the show features a competition series that was filmed here at Castello di Amorosa from December 2020 to March 2021. The Quest will premiere on their streaming service Disney+. This high paced show features a bevy of challenges, mazes and puzzles throughout the Castle. This will be the second season of The Quest.

Brought to the screen by the Academy Award- and Emmy-winning teams behind “The Amazing Race” and “The Lord of the Rings”. This ground-breaking, immersive, hybrid competition series drops eight real-life teenagers into the fantastic, fictional world of Everealm, where they must save a Kingdom by fulfilling an ancient prophecy. Everealm has long been a land of unrivaled beauty and powerful magic. Now, the realm is threatened by a powerful evil Sorceress. These eight teenage strangers known as the Paladins, must face a series of challenges in order to restore balance to Everealm. Throughout the eight-episode series, these heroes are immersed in a fantasy world come to life complete with a castle, royals, ethereal Fates, all forms of mystical creatures and a Sorceress intent on destruction and power.

Producer Rob Eric, said, “The Quest is a truly unique unscripted show as it takes contestants into a fully immersive world of magic and fantasy. There is no better partner than Disney+ for this type of enchanted storytelling.”

Executive producers Jane Fleming and Mark Ordesky commented “We’re doing something magical that has never been done at this level. We’re taking real people and putting them in a fully realized fantasy story, conceived and built by incredible artisans in every department. It’s an immersive, real-life hero’s journey for these eight normal teenagers, who transform before your very eyes. It’s an exciting new form of storytelling.”

Pack your bags (and swords), we’re headed to Everealm. Embark on a world of fantasy in #TheQuest, an Original series, streaming May 11 only on #DisneyPlus. For more updates, subscribe to Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic.

Filming took place throughout the Castle rooms and spaces. There was also extensive filming done in the forests surrounding Castello di Amorosa. Be sure to tag us #TheCastello in your social media posts! We are pleased we could contribute our Medieval setting to the creative magic at Disney. Thank you to everyone that was involved with making this amazing project a reality. Make sure to stream Season 2 of The Quest on Wednesday May 11th!

The Quest


Solar at The Castle

castelloamor

April 18th, 2022

Solar at The Castle

We invested $1.4 million in a 450-kilowatt solar power array. The massive 24 panel system was completed in January of 2022 and is situated on a spot which had been a forested slope but was significantly burned in the Glass Fire that hit the Napa Valley in 2020.

“This enormous investment is an important element of our commitment to become as self-sufficient as possible while minimizing our carbon footprint and helping with the climate change crisis. We expect this will offset our energy usage around 80%,” explains Georg Salzner, President, Castello di Amorosa.

Napa Valley Green Solar

Castello di Amorosa partnered with Centrica, Recolte Energy, 127 Energy and DEIF on the multiple components of this installation. 127 Energy designed the 556-kilowatt battery storage microgrid. Using advanced and remotely accessed power controls, the microgrid provides Castello di Amorosa with an independent power supply during frequent utility grid outages. During times of normal operations, the microgrid reduces utility energy charges and demand charges, resulting in significant operational savings for the winery.

“Due to fire risks and skyrocketing power prices, commercial business owners in California are taking matters into their own hands. Castello di Amorosa, Centrica Business Solutions, and Sungrow were great partners on this project and our collaboration exemplifies how innovative teams can solve daunting environmental and energy-related challenges,” said Mark Crowdis, CEO of 127 Energy. “The battery storage microgrid provides a striking juxtaposition of resilient, clean energy technology against the backdrop of historic castle grounds,” Crowdis added.

Solar Project

Other examples of Castello di Amorosa’s environmentally friendly programs and practices:

· Napa Green Certified: the winery has been Napa Green Certified since May 2018 (renewed in June 2021). Being Napa Green Certified’s requirements include LED Lighting, using a minimum of 50% recycled paper in the winery offices; using recycled cardboard and recycled pulp for shipping (instead of Styrofoam), using green certified cleaning agents and hand soap; using recyclable/compostable plates/flatware.

Bio Microbics Micro Fiber filtration system: the winery treats all of its processed water (water used during production of wine) and re-uses it for landscaping. Since 2017, the winery has treated and re-used over 5,000,000 gallons of water.

· The winery has begun composting as of January, 2022.

· Napa Ride Share program: the winery pays employees to carpool, thus eliminating more cars on the road.

Castello di Amorosa owns and farms 130 acres in Napa, Sonoma and Anderson Valley.



Napa Valley Wine & Chocolates

Chocolate Lovers Only

Bradley Aden

January 24th, 2022

For The Love of Wine & Chocolate

Few Napa Valley wineries are committed to producing top quality chocolates. Our elegant assortment of chocolates is hand-crafted, made exclusively to pair with our wines. When paired correctly Wine & Chocolate can elevate your tasting experience into something miraculous.

Our Napa Valley chocolates are the perfect gift for any occasion, an easy way to elevate any Valentine’s Day or Christmas celebration.

A Match Made in Heaven

Chocolate and wine are two of life’s greatest pleasures, but pairing them can be a difficult. Both offer intense flavors and complexity, which can lead to challenges when pairing the two. Cocoa beans, like wine grapes, undergo the fermentation process in order to remove tannins and create a more complex end effect.

A successful chocolate and wine pairing is vivid; producing enhanced sensations and tastes across the palate. Often revealing hidden flavors in both wine & chocolate for the first time. When in doubt, pair chocolates and wines that have a similar style and weight. Less intensely-flavored chocolates go well with lighter-bodied wines, while chocolates with more intense flavors can stand up to fuller-bodied wines. While it might sound counterintuitive, a wine that is “sweeter” than the chocolate itself actually works quite well. These characteristics provide a nice balance to the bitter flavors of cocoa.

The texture contrast between the two can make the difference between an amazing pairing and a quickly forgettable experience. Is the chocolate silky, luscious, palate-coating, crunchy? The fruit flavors and tannins combine with chocolate to create a lush mouthfeel. The characteristics that work best for these pairings, lay in the contrasting elements of the wine & chocolate relationship.

Don’t forget to experience our chocolate & wine pairings, available during any Castello tour and tasting experience.

Our Favorite Wine & Chocolate Pairings

Milk Chocolate

Pairs well with Merlot, La Castellana, Super Tuscan Blend, Pinot Noir
Milk chocolate is usually sweeter and creamier with flavors of brown sugar, vanilla, and cream. It requires a wine that is light to medium in body, with a ripe fruit character.

Dark Chocolate

Pairs well with Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, La Fantaisa, Il Passito, LH Gewürztraminer
Bitter to semi-sweet chocolates that are 50 to 100% cacao have intense, bitter flavors, and earthy to fruity undertones. The dark fruit from red wine and the fine tannins combine with dark chocolate to create a lush mouthfeel. Match the intensity of the chocolate without adding more dryness by pairing these chocolates with full-bodied wines.

White Chocolate

Pairs well with Riesling, Sweeter Rosè, Chardonnay
White chocolate, which is made with cocoa butter, sugar, and milk, has a sweet, buttery flavor with notes of honey and cream. Sweet white and rosè wines help cleanse the palate of the rich flavors from white chocolate, as does as sparkling spumante. White wines can really work great with white chocolate. Riesling or a buttery Chardonnay will complement the vanilla, caramel and honey flavors in the chocolate.

See Our Wine & Chocolate Recipes Here

3 Piece Chocolate Box

Bring our wine & chocolate pairing experience home with our trio of chocolate truffles from Le Belge Chocolatier! Try our smooth and creamy milk chocolate truffle with our Napa Valley Merlot, our luscious dark chocolate crown truffle with our Napa Valley Cabernet or Il Barone, and our beautiful raspberry-filled heart chocolate with our La Fantasia. A favorite for any lover of wine and chocolate!

Each box contains: 

  • 1 red dark chocolate hearts with raspberry gelate & dark chocolate ganache
  • 1 dark chocolate crowns w with dark chocolate and sea salt ganache
  • 1 creamy milk chocolate truffle

6 Piece Chocolate Box

Bring our wine & chocolate pairing experience home with our chocolate truffles from Le Belge Chocolatier made exclusively for the Castello! Featuring two creamy milk chocolate truffles perfect to pair with our Napa Valley Merlot, two luscious dark chocolate crown truffles crafted to pair with our Napa Valley Cabernet or Il Barone, and two enticing raspberry-filled heart chocolate truffles that pair beautifully with our La Fantasia. A favorite for any lover of wine and chocolate!

Each box contains: 

  • 2 red dark chocolate hearts with raspberry gelate & dark chocolate ganache
  • 2 dark chocolate crowns w with dark chocolate and sea salt ganache
  • 2 creamy milk chocolate truffles

Fantasia Truffle Box

Satisfy your heart’s desire with this lovely box of 6 chocolate heart truffles from Castello di Amorosa. Each hand-crafted milk chocolate piece is filled with a smooth and silky raspberry ganache. Delicious on their own or when paired with our La Fantasia soft-sparkling rosé.

Each box contains: 

  • 2 red dark chocolate hearts with raspberry gelate & dark chocolate ganache

King’s Ransom Truffle Box

Tempt your taste buds with the “King’s Ransom” of chocolates, a jewel box containing 12 assorted pieces of our artisan chocolates.  Your heart is in the right place when you purchase this for friends and family, but we wont hold it against you if you keep it!

Each box contains: 

  • 2 passion fruit cups with white chocolate truffle
  • 2 dark chocolate crowns w with dark chocolate and sea salt ganache
  • 2 dark chocolate shells with coconut truffle ganache
  • 2 red dark chocolate hearts with raspberry gelate & dark chocolate ganache
  • 2 white chocolate shells with key lime truffle ganache
  • 2 milk chocolate truffle shells with vanilla milk ganache

Assorted Chocolate 4-Pack

Includes one bar each of our Dark Chocolate Sea Salt, Belgian Milk Chocolate, La Fantasia Raspberry Chocolate, and Hazelnut Almond Milk Chocolate. Produced by local Napa Valley chocolatier, Le Belge, exclusively for the Castello.

Sea Salt Dark Chocolate

Revel in the salty sweetness of our locally made dark chocolate sea salt bars. Enjoy all on its own for a taste sensation or serve with our Late Harvest Gewürztraminer or Il Passito for an unforgettable paring! Each bar is 64% dark chocolate blended with pure sea salt. The sea salt intensifies the bright acidic notes of the chocolate while highlighting its earthiness with a crunchy texture for a pairing that is simply divine. Produced by local Napa Valley chocolatier, Le Belge, exclusively for the Castello.

Pair With: Il Passito, Late Harvest Gewürztraminer

La Fantasia Rasberry Chocolate

Indulge in your wildest chocolate fantasies with our La Fantasia Raspberry Dark Chocolate bar. Artisanally made by a local chocolatier, this dark chocolate bar contains a delicate raspberry ganache inside; the perfect accompaniment for our La Fantasia soft-sparkling rosé wine.

Pair With: La Fantasia

Hazelnut Almond Milk Chocolate

Revel in the smooth & rich flavors of our locally made hazlenut-almond chocolate bars. A delicious nutty, toasted and earthy experience sure to wow your palate. Produced by local Napa Valley chocolatier, Le Belge, exclusively for the Castello.

Pair With: Late Harvest Gewürztraminer

Belgian Milk Chocolate

Artisanally made by local gourmet chocolatier, Le Belge, exclusively for the Castello. The chocolate exhibits everything you want in a silky, melty milk chocolate. Pair this with a soft red wine like our Merlot or La Castellana for a chocolate paring delight!

Pair With: Merlot, La Castellana, Super Tuscan Blend, Pinot Noir, Moscato, Simpatica

Wine & Chocolate Packs

Our hand curated wine & chocolate packs make the perfect gift for any Valentines Day or Christmas. Our Castello wines hand paired with an elegant assortment of chocolates hand-crafted by Le Belge Chocolatiers exclusively for the Castello, excellent to pair with your favorite Castello wines.

Featured Packs: 

  • The Fantasy Wine Pack Our La Fantasia Wine Pack, available for a limited time featuring our fan favorite rosé, is guaranteed to make fireworks. This rosé wine pack features 3 bottles of 2020 La Fantasia, 4-Pack of authentic La Fantasia Raspberry Chocolate bars, 6 pc. Fantasia Truffle box & our Fantasia wine bottle magnet.
  • Liquid Gold Wine Pack An elegant take on excellence, our patience allows for a superior late harvest wine. When paired with our sea-salt chocolates this sweet wine comes to life like never before. The wine displays bright aromas of honey, vanilla bean, and citrus zest with rich butterscotch-caramel undertones. The rare late harvest varietal grown in the Yountville AVA of Napa Valley.
  • Cabernet & Chocolate Wine Pack – Few things in this world go together like Cabernet Sauvignon and Chocolate. Explore the depths of taste and luxury with our limited time wine pack. An elegant assortment of chocolates hand-crafted by Le Belge Chocolatiers exclusively for the Castello, excellent to pair with your favorite Castello wines. Cabernet and chocolate are a match made in heaven! The chocolate mellows the tannins in the wine, but the rich Cabernet Sauvignon has enough structure to withstand the boldness of the chocolate.



Winemaker Peter Velleno with Trenta Caberent Sauvignon

Trenta

Bradley Aden

September 10th, 2021

Trenta Cabernet Sauvignon
Peter Velleno Winemaker

The Inspiration

Introducing Castello di Amorosa’s newest Cabernet family addition, Trenta—a wine aged for 30 months in French Oak barrels. Grown in the best vineyards in Napa Valley, this powerful blend was aged 1 year longer than any other Castello Cabernet. This extended aging deeply integrates the oak to complement the intense black fruit profile of the wine, elevating the aroma, flavor, and texture.

The brainchild of winemaker Peter Velleno, Trenta carefully illustrates the close relationship between the wine & barrel. The 30 months provides this Cabernet blend with depths not normally seen with 18-month barrel cycles. Our winemakers chose to experiment with 30 months in French Oak barrels, which provide 1 extra year in barrels.

Trenta Cabernet Sauvignon

30 Months in Barrels

Barrel aging is the step between fermentation and bottling, which matures the wine and gives it distinct flavors. Barrel aging begins after five to eight days in fermentation tanks. The juice is pressed from the skins and seeds and pumped into French Oak barrels for aging in our extensive underground cave and cellar system. This process normally takes between 6 to 18 months (shorter times for white wine, longer for red wine). Ultimately, wine is aged in barrels for flavor development, maturity, and longevity after bottling. The oxygen that slowly comes through the oak barrel helps the wine mature, and tannins develop the structure of wine over time.

Only the highest quality barrels with tight oak grains and medium-plus toast levels are used. With our Trenta wine, we always use 100% new oak. The medium toast and new oak help to retain the wine’s natural elegance and balance. The toasting level of a barrel is created by exposing the wood to flames, thus creating a char within the wood. The more that wood is exposed to the flame, the more charred the wood becomes. This greatly affects the flavors imparted to the wine. Barrel production is science as well as art.

French Oak barrels have long been preferred by us because of their subtle ability to compliment the wine without overpowering the natural flavor profiles of the fruit. When examining French oak, we find the highest tannin of the oak types. Logs sourced from the Office National des Forêts make for more expensive timber. This results in a more expensive barrel that is appreciated by winemakers for its unique flavor characteristics. We are sure that Trenta will provide all these great characteristics of high-quality French oak barrels.

French Oak Barrels Made to Use Trenta.

Wine Profile

Trenta is made from a blend of the Castello’s top high-end Cabernet Sauvignon vineyards from the best growing regions of Napa Valley. The majority of the fruit is sourced from the Rutherford AVA, Coombsville AVA and Yountville AVA. All famed regions for producing beautifully structured complex Cabernet Sauvignon. Trenta is the only Cabernet blend that features Melanson and Don Thomas fruit, two extremely limited single vineyard wines.

Every year the blend used to make Trenta is unique. Each year before bottling, we select a few Cabernets to incorporate into a new blend that we think will improve even further with another year in barrels.

Limited Production

Each bottle of wine is 750 ml, so for each gallon of wine you have, you will be producing five bottles. If you have a large 60-gallon barrel, it holds approximately 300 bottles of wine. Meaning that we only made a few barrels worth of this wine, making it one of our most limited productions.

A wine unlike any other with luscious, velvety soft tannins and intense black cherry and currant flavors. Dense and complex with toasted oak notes that carry these fruit forward flavors throughout the finish, this well aged wine is beautifully presented now, but can easily age for years to come. The barrel also provides soft finishing touches which showcase the Cabernets deep flavor. The additional time in the barrel provides the Cabernet with rich depth and deeper complex flavors of Caramel, Light Smoke & Hazelnut.

Our 2018 Trenta is for sale now, made is extremely limited number. We are proud to present Trenta: a wine symbolic of our winemaking team, a crowning achievement.



Glass Fire Part II

Jim Sullivan

November 6th, 2020

The Clean Up Is Complete

After 1,800 hours of work, the Farmhouse that was burned in the Napa Valley Glass Fire is clean and ready for rebuilding- a 2-to-3-year process- that will utilize same painstaking process that led to the building of Castello di Amorosa, also know as the Napa Castle

Dario hired Zucco Structural Engineers of Santa Rosa to evaluate the existing 10-inch cement walls that are faced with stone and bricks. Zucco were the engineers that produced the original structural plans for the Farmhouse. We are hopeful that the structural report confirms that the walls were not damaged to the extent that they will need to be razed.

Once we have confirmation, we will need to obtain a permit from Napa County to rebuild. We will need thousands of handmade, antique roof tiles, bricks, doors, and metal work from Italy as well as timbers. Artisans from Europe will need to come to Castello to perform the work, to recreate the Farmhouse exactly as it was before the Glass Fire.

In rebuilding the Farmhouse, Dario will reaffirm the two of the original guiding principles used in the building of the Castello. First, the building will be rebuilt authentically. Second, it will be authentic which means it will take time. The rebuilt Farmhouse will not be a contemporary building that mimicked the medieval style. As he would say, you cannot build an “old structure” using modern techniques and tools and it cannot be fake! So, like the Castle itself, you will see hand-shaped bricks, stone, roof tiles and wood used as the building materials.

Fritz Gruber, a master builder, who furnished most of the bricks from Austria will be called on once again in the Farmhouse rebuilding project.

Fritz Gruber

Much of the stone will be sourced locally and worked by masons familiar with old stonecutting techniques. The roof tiles are hand made by artisans in Europe.

Castle Roof Tiles

The ironwork including the light fixtures, hinges, locks will all need to be fabricated by Giorgio Mariani, a blacksmith who Dario met in Assisi in 1998, and his son who reside in Umbria, Italy. These talented artisans created the wood doors and window surrounds for the Castle and we will ask for their help, once again, in the Farmhouse project.

Castle Door

It is likely that the former construction manager of the Castle project, Paulo Ardito will return for the Farmhouse Project. It was Paolo who built the Gatehouse, a tractor barn and office/storage building that is left of the main gate in 2014.

dario on drawbridge

Stay tuned to this blog for the next update. If you have not already done so, please sign up for our newsletter (Hyperlink) to stay up to date with all the latest from the Castello.


Glass Fire Part I

Read Part 1 of our Glass Fire Blog, featuring a message from Dario Sattui.

Read Part 1


Credit AP Noah Berger

Glass Fire

Dario Sattui

October 20th, 2020

Credit Noah Berger

Glass Fire Update

We have received an outpouring of love and support from our community and members, for which we are so grateful. In the midst of this challenging time, the team at Castello di Amorosa wishes to share with you a message of hope, fortitude, and resilience. While it is true that we have been affected by the fires, losing our Farmhouse building and scorched land surrounding the castle, we are grateful that our main castle building which spans 121,000 square feet has been left unscathed.  We owe this to the hard work of the police, first responders, and firefighters that have continuously dedicated their efforts to saving our beautiful property.  After seeing the flames, Dario’s first instinct was to save all of the animals at the castle, including the pigs, goats, sheep, emus, peacocks and chickens.

Looking to the future, it is time for us to come together as a community and to support one another. Wine country is strong, courageous and resourceful and we will get through this challenging time together and more unified than ever before. The incident has been heart-wrenching and devastating for the Castello di Amorosa Team, but through the tumult, our team and the spirit of Dario’s Labor of Love persisted.

– Castello di Amorosa Team

A Letter from Dario Sattui

Dear Friends & Family,

I spent nearly 15 years of my life designing and building the castle, which besides my wife Irina, is the second love of my life. I never thought the stone and brick fortress would be affected by fire. Unfortunately, in the early morning hours of September 28th, Castello di Amorosa sustained significant fire damage to the Farmhouse building, a separate 15,000 square foot building across the crush pad about 50 yards from the castle itself. The Farmhouse was completely destroyed. The beautiful castle itself and underground cellars which comprise approximately another 121,000 sq. ft. were not harmed by the fire.

 

Flaming embers landed in the grass near Highway 29 creating a massive fire that ripped up the hill to the Farmhouse before I knew it. My first response was to let our farm animals out of their pens, and then I raced to find a fire truck which responded quickly, but it was just too large a fire to handle. Fortunately, most of our wine inventory is stored in the castle and in our off-site warehouse and is in great condition.

Glass Fire

The Farmhouse contained about 120,000 bottles of wine with a retail value of approximately $5 million, a bottling line, a portion of the wine from the 2020 vintage and offices and a laboratory above. The castle itself was unaffected by the fire. I estimate that repairing this craftsman building and re-equipping it will cost approximately $10-12 million and take 2-3 years as most of the antique materials must come from Europe. The estimated total loss is approximately $15-20 million.

 

I really appreciate your heart-felt support during this difficult time. Your calls, emails and wine orders are very much appreciated. I am thankful for your support of the castle and honored that you continue to purchase and enjoy our wine which will help sustain the castle during this horrible time.

Glass Fire - La Times Photo Credit

I am thankful that no one was injured and want you to know that we are strong and resilient, and we will overcome this tragedy. Our hearts go out to our friends and neighbors, some of whom have suffered great losses. We are forever grateful for the hard work and dedication of the brave fire fighters and the first responders. 

 

We are already hard at work repairing systems and getting back on our feet.We expect to resume shipping your wine orders by the end of the week and to reopen the castle within a week for wine tasting.

 

I am looking forward to putting this disaster behind us and hosting you again at the castle soon. 

 

I wish you and your family all the best.


Glass Fire

Farmhouse Update

No one ever thought the 2020 Glass fire of September 28 which started on the east side of the Napa Valley near Crystal Springs road would ever make it to the east side of the valley. But the unthinkable quickly became reality at the hands of the fierce, 40 mph winds that fateful evening.

Castello’s Warehouse Manager, Francisco Campos forklift was destroyed in the Glass Fire

Dario Sattui was worried. He was up at 1:00 a.m. to assess the conditions. He drove to the Napa River and found the fire just 50 yards east of the Napa River, which was only 350 yards from the Castle. He noticed that the fire had consumed the entire field, but it appeared to extinguish itself as there was no more fuel to feed the flames. The fire department put out most, but not all, the remaining spot fires. Dario believed the spot fires coming to a 12-foot-wide gravel road would die out but was concerned about the high winds that evening.

He reasoned there was no way the fire could reach the Napa River, let alone cross it. Certainly, it was impossible the fire could cross the main highway 45 feet wide, so he went to sleep at 2 a.m. At 3:45 a.m., a neighbor woke him to say the fire was on the Castle’s side on the highway. He did not entirely believe her, but quickly dressed and drove up the highway. Sure enough, the fire was on the Castle side of the road and in an instant, it roared up the gully into the backside of the Castle’s beloved Farmhouse causing major damage

Some of Castello di Amorosa’s most precious wine was stored in the Farmhouse. In total, over 110,000 bottles of wine were destroyed including some of the Crown Jewel Collection of Il Barone, La Castellana and single vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon’s from Don Thomas Vineyard in Rutherford, Morisoli-Borges Vineyard in Rutherford, Melanson Vineyard on Pritchard Hill and Castello’s Super Tuscan Blend, Sinalunga named for a small commune near Siena, Italy which inspired Dario to build the Castello.


Glass Fire Part II

Read Part 2 of our Glass Fire Blog, with an update from the Castle.

Read More

Castle Victorian

Introducing The Castello Victorian

Bradley Aden

March 11th, 2020

The Castello Victorian – The Newest Addition

Built in 1886, Castello Victorian is a historic 4 bedroom Victorian home located in Calistoga, CA. Recently restored to its historic charm and converted into an Inn, this 3600 sq ft home is perfect for individuals, couples or families looking to either rent individual rooms or book the entire house while visiting Napa Valley. Built in 1886, Castello Victorian is a historic 4 bedroom Victorian home located in Calistoga, CA. Recently restored to its historic charm and converted into an Inn, this 3600 sq ft home is perfect for individuals, couples or families looking to either rent individual rooms or book the entire house while visiting Napa Valley.

Whether you’re looking for an individual room to stay or an entire house to entertain, make your next visit to Napa Valley one to remember at Castello Victorian! Bring along your friends, your family, and stay in your own private vacation home.

This spacious, updated Victorian Inn is surrounded by majestic trees, outdoor-dining deck, and a BBQ area – perfect for relaxing and entertaining with family and friends. This 3600 sqft home offers:

  • 4 bedrooms, each with their own private baths
  • Large living room with WIFI and cable TV
  • Full-equipped and newly updated kitchen
  • Bar area with wine refrigerator
  • Laundry – washer/dryer
  • Beautiful backyard with redwood decking for BBQ’s and al fresco dining

Book Now


The Freshest Olive Oil in Napa Valley

Bradley Aden

February 13th, 2020

Olio Nuovo – Our Freshest Olive Oil

Straight off the presses! Experience the difference fresh makes, an Italian culinary tradition that is hundreds of years old. Olio Nuovo (which means, new oil) differs from your typical Olive Oil. Taken straight from the press this freshly pressed oil has all the natural flavors left inside the oil. Don’t get left without our amazing hand picked olive oil from our Castle team. Cold Pressed under 50 degrees, harvested locally from the Castello’s own estate vineyard. These freshly pressed oils have a robust taste and polyphenols galore. In short, olio nuovo is olive oil in its most intense, raw state. Here at the Castle, we are one of the first in the Napa Valley to sell Olio Nuovo.

Made exclusively from olives harvested at our own Morning Dew Ranch estate property in the Anderson Valley, Mendocino County. These mature olive trees grow on a small patch of sloped hillside adjacent to some of the Castello’s most prized Pinot Noir vines. Under the watchful eyes and with the help of both our Winemaker and Vineyard Manager, the harvest was done by hand on a single foggy morning, by the same dedicated team that cares for our grapevines on the secluded and serene ranch. Check out our video below!


Our Olio Nuovo is used best as a finishing oil and a dipping oil; enjoy it drizzled on salads, pasta, salami and cheese, or over grilled meat or fish. Delicious simply as a dip with salt and bread. It is only available seasonally, for a limited time.

“We wish we could sell Olio Nuovo all year, but the tiny olive particles that give the oil vibrant flavors must be filtered out so that our EVOO can be bottled and enjoyed throughout the year. Limited availability, get it before it sells out! Olive Oil at its freshest and boldest! “

– Castello President Georg Salzner

Olive Oil
Shop Now


River Otters In Wine Country

Carla Venezia

January 15th, 2020

River Otters in Napa Valley

Napa Valley Wine Country River Otters

When Dario’s great-grandfather, Vittorio, was growing grapes and making wine from fruit sourced around St. Helena in the early 1900s, river otters were a thriving native species in the nearby Napa River and its numerous tributaries. But by 1977, Napa County was omitted from the California Dept of Fish and Game’s list of counties with river otters.

The river otters’ gradual disappearance from the Bay Area was attributed to hunting, trapping and industrial water pollution and land development leading to reduced wetland habitats.  The devastation of the river otter population was so complete that by 1995, the California Dept of Fish and Game showed virtually no river otters living anywhere in the several counties that make up the San Francisco Bay Area.

With the 1972 passage of the Clean Water Act plus proactive management of watersheds, restoration of wetlands and the efforts of local conservation groups, river otters have made a slow but (miraculously) steady comeback and we couldn’t be happier about it!

Dario first became aware of our local river otters a few years ago when he started spotting them in the Napa River near Calistoga. Ever since, he’s made it his mission to ensure Castello di Amorosa is doing everything possible to support our local river otters–this he does in several ways:

With sustainable agricultural practices, our winery and vineyards are Napa Green-certified, meaning we meet all regulatory components necessary for environmental sustainability, including water conservation and water efficiency. The Castello recycles and purified its water, so the only runoff is clean (or rain!).  The Castello staff further contributes by ensuring the Castello’s very own Lake Mario and Nash Creek–which lead directly to the Napa River–are ecologically sound and full of happy, healthy fish!

Dario is looking forward to working with Megan Isadore, co-founder and Executive Director of The River Otter Ecology Project—a Bay Area river otter conservation group dedicated to encouraging continued re-population of river otters. The ROEP has “otter awareness” programs for children, field internship programs for teens and volunteer opportunities for adults in the field and lab. ROEP assesses habitats and conducts field studies, among which include analyzing “scat” (to study the otter’s diet!). The ROEP maintains numerous “otter cams” alongside rivers and creeks which further contribute valuable data.

If you happen to see a river otter anywhere in the Bay Area, he sure to let ROEP know about it–even better if you can provide a photo. And don’t forget to tell Megan that Dario sent you!

For more on otters please visit here.

www.riverotterecology.org