As many movie buffs as wine lovers come to the grand tasting room and museum at Rubicon (1991 St. Helena Hwy., Rutherford, 707/968-1100, www.rubiconestate.com , daily 10 a.m.–5 p.m.), formerly Niebaum-Coppola.
This estate winery, a pet project of Francis Ford Coppola himself, also houses a small but delightful museum showcasing famed Coppola movies. You’ll see memorabilia from the Godfather series and other films, period costumes, some of Coppola’s awards, and a few documents that film buffs find fascinating.
Over in the large, elegant tasting room, you’ll find a generous bar area with plenty of staff to help you navigate the Rubicon wine list. Despite the famous name, this isn’t just another star-owned vanity winery; the winemakers take their job seriously and the results can be spectacular.
Rubicon offers a wide range of varietals, including a few whites. But the specialty of the house is the selection of big, heavy, serious reds that run like blood from the bottle into your glass. Appropriate, don’t you think?