I've enjoyed a couple spots that make it their primary business venture to pass on their love of wines and passing knowledge of the vine; one in downtown Pleasanton, one in downtown San Jose, and recently one in Willow Glen.
The Grapevine in the Willow Glen district of San Jose is the most convenient for me and mine but that's not the only reason we'll become regulars. I like how they've embraced technology and allow their customer base to feel connected with weekly (opt-in only) updates and tasting events.
Cara Finn & Ruth Hennigar are hands-on people and very relaxed when discussing vines, types, and years. Their passion for knowledge doesn't blind them when discussing favorites, either!
We went during a vertical tasting of a particular vineyard and were wowed at the price (a good thing) and the selections (a better thing). There is a cheese bar, too, but SWMBO found the prices steeper than she was comfortable with. (I, OTOH, brought home several pounds of cheddars, blues, and goats, so that might've added to her buyer's remorse.(EG))
If you find yourself in Willow Glen and would like to unwind from a LONG day in High Tech or would like to enjoy the finer qualities of some excellent wines, give The Grapevine a try.
1389 Lincoln Avenue (near Minnesota)
San Jose CA 95125
Tues - Sat: 10am - 9pm
(For those that care; Visa/MC/AMEX accepted, too.)