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“Great white wines!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Cakebread Cellars

Cakebread Cellars
8300 St. Helena Highway, Rutherford, CA 94573
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Ranked #9 of 19 activities in Rutherford
Type: Wineries
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Attraction Details
Owner description: This winery specializes in producing wine to go with particular types of food and sells most of its wines to restaurants throughout the world.
Saint Louis, Missouri
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Great white wines!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2013

Have always wanted to go to Cakebread, as a lover of their truly great Chardonnays, but was left a little disappointed. They require reservations for tastings, and its obvious why- the place is popular and packed! We checked in and were kind of shuffled off to wait for the others in our tasting (think there were 9) to arrive. Waited about 15 minutes, which felt unnecessary. Was really kind of disorganized though when the lady came to get our group. She didn't make sure to get everyone, and we didn't all know where to go or what to do. An older lady who seemed to know what was up, helped us and got everyone situated. There was still a couple at the bar finishing a tasting, and it felt like our group kicked them out, which was odd. When we did get set up though- the tasting was GREAT. Such great wines, and so nice to try all the different styles and vintages of Chardonnays actually in a row to get the real variations in taste. Tres was a great host and did a fabulous job of distributing her attention between the 3 groups of tasters at her bar. She was knowledgable and friendly- she really saved the experience for me I think. I think I would bring people back again, as the wine is great.

Visited September 2013
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215 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“Fun expereince, great wine.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2013

Don was our guide and he was great. Very informative and helpful. The wines were interesting, and we enjoyed tasting wines other than the Cabernet that is available in most places. We ended up buying a bottle of Pinot Noir, which doesn't show up in most stores in NY, for about 50 bucks. The groups were nice, and we left happy. The standard wine tasting was abotu 15 bucks, which seemed fair. They had some reserve wine tasting, and the prices increased accordingly.

Visited September 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, Florida
Top Contributor
142 reviews 142 reviews
23 attraction reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
78 helpful votes 78 helpful votes
“Good, not great”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2013 via mobile

We visited Cakebread on the recommendation of a friend. Due to our hotel's partnership with the winery, we received a 2 for 1 discount on the reserve tasting ($40). The girl who met us in the parking lot was very bubbly as she led us into the check-in area. They gave us a glass of Sauvignon Blanc to sip while we waited for our tasting to start. Our tasting attendant, Barbara, was really friendly and seemed to genuinely love her job. We tasted four different wines, but weren't completely sold. She let us try a Pinot that wasn't on the list, which we bought two of. We didn't have a bad experience, it was just a little more commercialized than we like. We enjoy the boutique wineries a lot more.

Visited August 2013
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New York City, New York
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Visitor experience needs refinement to match good wines”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2013

Cakebread's wines are generally above average (Cab, Pinot) to excellent (Chardonnay), and are priced at the higher end of their peer group. Most wineries will waive your tasting fee, or credit it towards your purchases, if you either join their wine club or purchase above a certain threshold. Being specific fans of Cakebread wines we did both, purchasing a mixed case of higher-end wines to go, and joining their wine club to have at least another case delivered over the next year. Having prepaid our tasting fees a couple in advance of our visit to secure our reservation, no credit toward our substantial purchase was offered. As with most things, it was not the money, it was the principle, and the feeling we were left with was that the winery cared primarily about squeezing every penny out of each visitor.

The gift shop was also a let down, offering only a very limited variety of tchotchke-type items, such as golf balls, that are poor tools for brand marketing and promotion. The most popular item seemed to be the used corks from the tasting room bottles, which were available free of charge to visitors (which had the unintended effect of providing a source of entertainment as we watched some slovenly tourist stuff them by the handfuls into her already ill-fitting jeans pockets...).

I believe people go to Napa primarily for one of two wine-based reasons -- to discover new wines or to have an immersive, backstage pass type experience with wines they already love and support. Our group was the latter, and based on our mediocre, underwhelming visitor experience, I would only recommend visiting for a tasting if you really love their wines AND you have a gap in your tastings schedule to fill.

Visited August 2013
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Jamestown, North Carolina, United States
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
17 attraction reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Don't bother.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2013

Wines were average. It was hot the day we visited, but they insisted on serving us outside. Plenty of room inside for a tasting, but no. I might have been able to enjoy the wines more if we had been inside. Serving staff was "all about them", not "all about the wines."

Visited August 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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