ACME Fine Wines: The Art of Under the Radar Napa Wine Tasting

One of the reoccurring precepts in life is to never underestimate the upstart and the unassuming. From Fred Rogers to The Fred Factor, history is brimming with examples of the little guy making a big impact. Often in life the best experiences are those that fly under the radar.

Tucked away on a quiet side street in St. Helena, ACME Fine Wines has built a reputation as the authority small production, new producer and under-the-radar wines in the Napa and Sonoma Valleys. From their art gallery styled studio, ACME conducts wine tastings, fulfills four different wine clubs and runs an online wine retail site, all with a proclivity toward the new and small producers from the area.

By working closely with the newest producers in the area, ACME has a front row seat to fresh energy and innovation in Napa and Sonoma. Along with traditional area examples, the wines they discover also include alternative varietals and those made with unique winemaking techniques, providing for tastings and wine club offerings that bind the traditional with the contemporary in a way few others can. That’s what makes ACME Fine Wines special.

The brainchild of Karen Williams, ACME is built on a her passion to excite and challenge the palates of visitors in an environment that provides for memorable experiences. General Manager Erin Di Constanzo brings to the studio a rich background in wine cultivation and customer service excellence with a resume that includes leadership positions at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse and St. Helena’s PRESS restaurant.

In our Under the Radar tasting at ACME we started with Arbe Garbe, a Sonoma County white blend that includes Italian varietals Malvasia Bianca, Ribolla Gialla and Tocai Friulano. The floral notes of hyacinth combined with the flavors of nectarine and white peach provided for a refreshing wine that was a welcome break from the ripe Sauvignon Blancs found at most other tastings. The reds in the tasting included a delicious Young Hagen Pinot Noir made from a vineyard in Occidental (Sonoma County) and native yeast, Teeter-Totter, a juicy and powerful, yet affordable, Napa Cab blend from Benoit Touquette, and an opulent Thomas Rivers Brown-made Riverain Cabernet that is sourced from the Tench Vineyard adjacent to Screaming Eagle. Every wine we tried had a fun and unique story to accompany the pour.

There are many wonderful wine tasting experiences to be found in Napa and Sonoma, but few as unique, exclusive and memorable as a tasting at ACME Fine Wines. Allowing them to pair your tasting with Panevino artisanal meats and breadsticks (their neighbor) can elevate the visit and help you experience the wines served in different ways.

You can learn more about ACME Fine Wines tastings and wine clubs at their website:

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