Many a gift is made that much more compelling by the addition of a bottle of wine. So when the opportunity arises to give a gift that is sprinkled with phrases like "private" and "VIP" and "Napa," and that gift comes with not one, but three, bottles of distinguished ambrosia -- well, it begins to look like a little bit of attention might be in order.
Wine.com's By Appointment Only will stuff your mailbox with a package of cabernets from Quintessa, Chateau Montelena, and Caymus. Yet those are merely to get you in the mood. The feature delight comes the next time you visit Napa: private appointments at each vineyard, during which you'll tour the facilities, sample as-yet-unbottled selections straight from the barrels -- so bring a straw -- and if Madame Nature plays fair, a tour of the vineyard
These are no rush jobs, either: each group is just four people, and each visitation lasts up to 3 hours. Which means that when you've finished your preliminary samplings and you want to know what makes Caymus so subtly capricious, Chateau Montelena so delicately moving, and Quintessa so.. just plain divine, By Appointment Only is your peek behind their veils. Oh, and priced at $500, it also has a superb finish: it's good until the summer of 2011.