Napa Valley Life Magazine - Winter 2019 Edition

Page 1


the th annual


Intriguing Issue PLUS+

Tuck Beckstoffer In Pursuit of Excellence Jack London Square: Oakland’s Urban Wine Country Atlas Peak AVA Uncompromising, Rugged Beauty WINTER 2019


Some of your most important connections can be found Some of your most important close to your home Some of most connections can be important found

connections can be found close to home We’re proud to put Napa, Sonoma and Solano Counties first for more than 20 years, and we’re committed to helping you build on your success with a financial strategy tha close to home We’refor proud to put put Napa, Napa, Sonoma Sonoma and and Solano Solano Counties Counties first first for for more more than than 20 20 years, years, just We’re proud

and we’re we’re committed committed to to helping helping you you build build on on your your success success with with aa financial financial strategy strategy that’s that’s and just for forproud you. to put Napa, Sonoma and Solano Counties first for more than 20 years, We’re just you. and we’re committed to helping you build on your success with a financial strategy that’s just for you.

The Gonzales Gonzales Group The Gonzales Group The Group

Eric Gonzales Gonzales Merrill Lynch Wealth Wealth Management Management Eric Merrill Lynch Eric Gonzales Merrill Lynch Wealth Manageme Senior Vice President Riverfront – 700 Main Street The Gonzales Group Senior Vice RiverfrontRiverfront – 700 Main–Street Senior VicePresident President 700 Main Street Senior Resident Director – Wealth Management Advisor Suite 200 Senior Resident Director – Wealth Management Advisor Suite 200 Eric Gonzales Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Senior Resident Director – Wealth Management Advisor Napa, CA CASuite 94559200 707.254.4606 Napa, 94559 Senior Vice President RiverfrontNapa, – 700 Main Street 707.254.4606 707.254.4606 707.255.5559 CA 94559 Senior Resident Director – Wealth Management Advisor 707.254.4606

Suite 200 707.255.5559 Napa, CA707.255.5559 94559 707.255.5559

Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (also referred to as “MLPF&S” or “Merrill”) makes available certain investment products sponsored, managed, distributed or provided by companies that are Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner &Corporation Smith Incorporated (also referred “MLPF&S”broker-dealer, or “Merrill”) makes available certain investment managed, distributed or provided by companies that are affiliates of Bank of America (“BofA Corp.”). MLPF&Stois as a registered Member SIPC and a wholly owned products subsidiarysponsored, of BofA Corp. affiliates of Bank of America Corporation (“BofA Corp.”). MLPF&S is a registered broker-dealer, Member SIPC and a wholly owned subsidiary of BofA Corp. Investment products: Are Not FDIC Insured Are Not Bank Guaranteed May Lose Value Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith referred to as “MLPF&S” or “Merrill”) makes available certain investment products sponsored, managed, distributed or provided by com Investment products: Are Not FDICIncorporated Insured (also Are Not Bank Guaranteed May Lose Value © 2019 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved. AR4BYPP7 | AD-05-19-0438 | 470950PM-0519 | 06/2019 affiliates Bank of America (“BofA Corp.”). MLPF&S is a registered broker-dealer, Member and a products wholly owned subsidiary ofdistributed BofA Corp. Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Corporation Smith Incorporated (also referred to as “MLPF&S” or “Merrill”) makes available certainSIPC investment sponsored, managed, or provided by companies| that are © 2019 of Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved. AR4BYPP7 | AD-05-19-0438 | 470950PM-0519 06/2019 affiliates of Bank of America Corporation (“BofA Corp.”). MLPF&S is a registered broker-dealer, Member SIPC and a wholly owned subsidiary of BofA Corp.

Investment products: Investment products:

Are Not FDIC Insured

Are Not FDIC Insured

Are Not Bank Guaranteed

Are Not Bank Guaranteed

© 2019 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved. © 2019 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved. 2


May Lose Value

May Lose Value

AR4BYPP7 | AD-05-19-0438 | 470950PM

AR4BYPP7 | AD-05-19-0438 | 470950PM-0519 | 06/2019

"Thanks to Dr. Lamberton and his team, I can't stop smiling!” Keli O'Mara Stylist & Owner Salon Eleven

moc.snrofsneciv.www snroF sneciV :rehpargotohP


























Dr. Cecil Lamberton, DDS (707) 257-7771 WINTER 2019


Defining Excellence hBest Winery

in North America

-The Discoverer Blog h Winemaker

of the Year: Sara Fowler

-Napa Valley Life ‘16, ’17, ’18 h Best

Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

-California State Fair h Best

Place to Work

-North Bay Business Journal

Open Daily, 10am - 6pm | Preferred Reservations 10am - 12pm 8466 St. Helena Hwy., Rutherford, CA 94573 | 707.963.3600 |




3341 Solano Ave. (Redwood Plaza) Napa, CA 94558 | (707) 252-8131

3341 Solano Ave. (Redwood Plaza) Napa, CA 94558 | (707) 252-8131 FOOD WINTER & WINE 2018 2019



F E AT U R E S 2 0 1 9 W I N T E R / / T H E I N T R I G U I N G I S S U E

Story 40 Cover Tuck Beckstoffer:

In Pursuit of Excellence

Annual 44 18th Intriguing Issue

Napa Valley People Worth Getting to Know

Viticultural 76 American Area (AVA) Series Atlas Peak: Rich, Rugged Beauty

a Day Trip 89 Take Jack London Square: Oakland Reinvents Wine Country






18 th annual

Int riguing Issue PLUS


+ Tuck In Pursui Beckstoffer t of Excelle nc e Jack Lond on Sq Oakland’s uare: Ur Wine Counban try Atlas Peak AVA Uncompr omisi Rugged Be ng, auty WINTER 2019




always ll “We'

have Napa Valley”

3111 St. Helena Highway N. St. Helena, CA 707.968.5434 | @brasswoodnapavalley Tours & Tastings: 10am-5pm Bar + Bakery + Kitchen Open 8am-9pm WINTER 2019


NVL contents NV Scene • 14 Recent parties, concerts, celebrations and events

Things To Do 26 Calendar of Events Inside Track • 27 Beyond the Valley • 28

D E PA R T M E N T S 2 0 1 9 W I N T E R / / T H E I N T R I G U I N G I S S U E


30 di Rosa: Blending Art and the Outdoors 32 Wine Train Murder Mystery Tour 34 10th Annual Napa Valley Truffle Festival

What’s Hot • 36 Special Features 62 Local Vintners Making Canned Wine 70 From Wine to Whiskey: Napa Vintners Hit the Bourbon Trail

Wine Scene 64 Sans Wine Co. 68 Rutherford Wine Vault: The Wine Capsule




74 Enriquez Estate Wines 83 Alta Napa Valley 84 Hesperian Wines 85 VinRoc Wine Caves 86 Lobo Wine 87 Hendrickson Family Vineyards 88 Stonum Vineyards

Wine & Winery Spotlights 66 Precision Wine Company 82 Dos Lagos Vineyards

Day Trip 89 Jack London Square

People, Art & Design 92 Kent Parker


Health & Wellness 94 Pilates Napa Valley 96 Roman Hot Springs Resort

Food Scene 98 Shackford's Kitchen Store 100 Dining Guide



Kenzo Estate



1488 Fairway Vista Ct. Calistoga

1488 Fairway Vista Ct. Calistoga

494 White Cottage Rd. S., Angwin

435 College Ave., Angwin

823 Champagne E., Calistoga

1414 Ink Grade Rd., Pope Valley

Growing family, upgrading your property or downsizing for retirement You will be well represented by Jennifer Klingbeil and her team at Golden Gate Sotheby’s International Realty during this next transition of your life. Jennifer combines real estate knowledge with a professional background in marketing to skillfully utilize our network of resources in 71 countries around the World. Connecting your listing to the most possible buyers, will allow you to move on to that next exciting stage of your Napa Valley Life. Jennifer Klingbeil, Realtor® | Top Producer | m 707.492.0435 | Lic.# 02067543 | @jennapavalley Sotheby’s International Realty® is a registered trademark licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. WINTER Each Office Is Independently Owned and Operated.



NVL editor's letter

intriguing A

s we close out another memorable year, we pause to celebrate what makes Napa Valley so unique. In our 18th Annual Intriguing Issue, we recognize Napans who are pushing the needle to support the betterment of the local community and enhance the Napa Valley experience for the astounding 3.85 million visitors who pass through each year. While Napa’s outstanding wines and unrivaled culinary scene have helped build its reputation for excellence, it’s the people who live and work here who make it such a magical place. On page 44, we introduce some of Napa Valley’s most intriguing people and why they are worth getting to know. How befitting our Intriguing People cover story (page 40) features Tuck Beckstoffer. As the son of Andy Beckstoffer, he was born into a world of intrigue with a name that carries quality, pedigree, and distinction. Tuck holds a deep respect for everything that came before him, learning the business literally from the ground up. Tuck started as a farmer and eventually fell in love with winemaking. Still active and passionate in both roles, he is one of the few stewards in Napa Valley that is both a grower and a winemaker, a duality that embodies his commitment to excellence. In this issue we reveal a few of Napa Valley’s intriguing “Adventure Vintners” who are bucking the classic trends. Whether it be packaging premier wine in a can for the guy or gal on the go (page 62) or expanding decades of winemaking prowess to produce premier craft bourbon, (page 70) their exciting new ventures are worth following. Still intrigued to try something different? A day trip to Jack London Square (page 89) offers a quick detour off the Napa wine trails. Less than an hour’s drive away, this urban mecca has some great restaurants and wineries worth exploring. Finally, on page 76, we continue our American Viticultural Area (AVA) series featuring Atlas Peak and some of its premier vintners. Recognized as one of Napa Valley’s most stunning winegrowing regions, its high elevation, volcanic soil, and ubiquitous bay breezes offer the perfect muse for producing wines that are expressive, well balanced and regaled with consistently high scores. It’s hard to believe the year is almost at its end. To our many contributors and our dedicated readership it is with warm appreciation we extend our very best wishes for a joyous holiday season and a Happy New Year.


Laura Larson Editor



Be it words on a page, or wine in a glass, expression can be inspiring

Photo by Douglas Sterling

- Brilliant Mistake Wines WINTER 2019



Napa Valley Life 2019 Winner

“Best Place for Gifts” Napa General Store 540 Main Street - Napa

Doris Hobbs – 209-207-4876 Jenny Morgan – 707-738-3353 CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Fran Miller Eve Bushman Paul Franson Marisa McCann Laurie Jo Miller Farr


Layne Randolph



Daniel Mangin

Lowell Downey Janna Waldinger Bob McClenahan ABOUT THE COVER Tuck Beckstoffer- A Napa Valley icon and steward of the vines Photo by Lowell Downey, Art & Clarity

Napa Valley Life Magazine is published six times a year. We have four quarterly publications and two annual publications. 1370 Trancas Street # 770, Napa, CA 94558 Copyright 2019 by Napa Valley Life Magazine. All rights reserved. No part of this publication maybe reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. Subscriptions are available at $12/year by visiting and clicking on subscriptions at the top.

Twitter: @napavalleylifem



Facebook: NVLife

FALL 2019





WE THANK THESE BUSINESSES FOR THINKING LOCAL RETAIL SHOPS CALISTOGA Cal-Mart Calistoga Smoke Shop Calistoga Wine Stop ST. HELENA ACME Fine Wines Safeway St. Helena Wine Center Sunshine Foods Market OAKVILLE Oakville Grocery YOUNTVILLE Ranch Market Too V Wine Cellar NAPA Back Room Wines - Wine Store & Bar Benchmark Wine Group BevMo! Bounty Hunter Wines Browns Valley Market Buffalo's Shipping Post Calwine Cellar Collections Lawler’s Liquors Napa Valley Wine & Cigar Napa Valley Wine Train Napa Wine & Spirits Nob Hill Foods Raley’s Ranch Market Redwood Liquor Safeway Soda Canyon Store Val’s Liquors Whole Foods

RESTAURANTS CALISTOGA All Seasons Bistro Calistoga Inn Restaurant and Brewery Calistoga Ranch Evangeline Johnny's Restaurant and Bar

Lovina Sam’s Social Club Solbar Veraison Restaurant ST. HELENA Acacia House at Las Alcobas Archetype Brasswood Cook St. Helena Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch Gatehouse Restaurant Culinary Institute of America Goose & Gander Gott’s Roadside Harvest Table Himalayan Sherpa Kitchen Market Restaurant PRESS ROADHOUSE 29 The Charter Oak The Grill at Meadowood The Restaurant at Meadowood RUTHERFORD Auberge du Soleil Rutherford Grill YOUNTVILLE Bistro Jeanty Bottega Napa Valley Bouchon Bistro Brix Ciccio Lucy Restaurant at Bardessono Mustards Grill Protea R+D Kitchen The French Laundry NAPA ALBA Angèle Azzuro Pizzeria BANK Café & Bar at The Westin Verasa Napa Basalt Bistro Don Giovanni Blue Note Napa Boon Fly Cafe at The Carneros Inn

Bounty Hunter Wine Bar & Smokin’ BBQ Bui Bistro Ca’ Momi Cadet Carpe Diem Celadon Charlie Palmer Steak Napa Cole’s Chop House Compline Wine Bar Cordeiro’s Bar & Grill Eiko’s FARM at The Carneros Inn Forge Pizza Napa fumé Bistro & Bar Galpão Gaucho Gott’s Roadside Grill 29 at Embassy Suites Hop Creek Il Posto Trattoria Kitchen Door La Toque Mercantile Social at Andaz Mercantile Terrace at Andaz Morimoto Napa Napa Cigars Napa General Store Napa Noodles Napa Palisades Saloon NapaSport Steakhouse & Sports Lounge Napa Valley Bistro Napa Valley Wine Train Napkins Bar + Grill Norman Rose Tavern Oenotri Pasta Prego Ristorante Allegria Siena Restaurant at The Meritage Resort Napa Silverado Resort and Spa Southside Café Stone Brewing Napa Tarla Mediterranean Bar + Grill The Commons at The Meritage Resort Napa The Q Restaurant & Bar The Restaurant at CIA Copia TORC Trancas Steakhouse VINeleven at Napa Valley Marriott



NV scene

NV Scene

The Napa Valley scene of recent parties, concerts, celebrations and events NAPA VALLEY FILM FESTIVAL The ninth annual Napa Valley Film Festival (NVFF) returned to Napa Valley with its five-day festival showcasing the year’s best new independent films from November 13-17. Napa Valley’s finest food and wine was offered at all special events, including the Festival Gala, VIP receptions and Vintner Circle dinners. Films were screened at seven venues located throughout the Valley. Highlights of the star-studded week included Celebrity Tribute Awards for Kevin Bacon who received the festival’s Charles Krug Legendary Actor honor, Olivia Wilde was presented with the Raymond Vineyards Trailblazer award, Jillian Bell scored the Spotlight award, and Vanessa Hudgens won Blackbird Vineyards’ Visionary Honor. Additional accolades were presented at the third annual Rising Star Showcase, hosted at Materra Vineyards, which honored a handful of young up and coming talent. For a full list of the 2019 juried and audience award winning films, visit . Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick Photo by Jason Merritt

NV Film Festival Gala Photo by Laura Larson Jillian Bell, Kevin Bacon,Vanessa Hudgens Photo by Jason Merritt

Vanessa Hudgens Photo by Jason Merritt



Ayesha Curry and Jon Huertas at Vivant Launch Photo by Jason Merritt

Inglenook Vintners Circle Dinner Photo by Bob McClenahan

Olivia Wilde and Nischelle Turner Photo by Laura Larson


The Staglin family celebrated a quarter century of important advances in science and a new financial milestone at the 25th Music Festival for Brain Health on September 14th at the Staglin Family Vineyards in Napa Valley. Co-hosts Shari and Garen Staglin, along with their children Brandon and Shannon, Co-Founder of One Mind Patrick Kennedy, Congressman Mike Thompson, and the Board of Directors welcomed over 500 supporters, scientists, and friends to celebrate life and raise awareness of the causes and cures for physiological brain disorders. The 25th Annual festival began with a scientific symposium, featuring keynote speaker John Krystal, MD, Chair of Psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine. Following the symposium, a tasting of some of the world’s most acclaimed wines took place in the Staglin Family Vineyard winery caves, with hors d’oeuvres provided by Angéle Restaurant in Napa. The party continued when Sheryl Crow took the stage for an intimate concert among the Staglin Family Vineyard vines, delivering a crowd-pleasing performance of her many hits that had attendees on their feet and singing along with the nine-time GRAMMY award-winning artist. The event raised over $9 million to benefit One Mind, the nation’s leading private-public mental health organization dedicated to curing brain-related diseases. Mike Thompson presents award to Staglin Family Photo by Flying Pig Photography

Mental Health Advocate, Glenn Close




The Mount Veeder Appellation hosted its 20th Annual Taste of Mount Veeder event on September 7 at the Hess Collection Winery. Over 25 Mount Veeder wineries presented their premium labels and hard to find wines from this unique wine growing region. Small bites were prepared by Hess Collection Executive Chef, Chad Hendrickson, and guests enjoyed live, high-energy blues by the Hummingbirdz. The event sponsored a Silent Auction and a raffle for prized and library selections from the participating vintners.




V FOUNDATION WINE CELEBRATION AUGUST 6-9, 2020 | NAPA VALLEY, CALIFORNIA With host Mike “Coach K” Krzyzewski, Duke University head men’s basketball coach and former head coach of the US men’s national basketball team. The fundraiser will benefit colorectral cancer research. Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death among men and women combined. Since 1999, the V Foundation Wine Celebration, benefiting the V Foundation for Cancer Research, has raised over $115 million for cancer research and related programs. This three-day signature series of events in the stunning Napa Valley demonstrates that committment, passion and giving become the catalyst for positive change. Experience the best culinary adventures, the most sought-after winest, exciting performances, thoughtprovoking panels and the chance to meet amazing people from all over the country who are joining the same fight along with you. The V Foundation for Cancer Research was founded in 1993 by ESPN and the late Jim Valvano, legendary North Carolina State University basketball coach and ESPN commentator. Since 1993, the Foundation has funded more than $225 million in cancer research grants nationwide.

for more information and to register, go to

follow us:

Michell Veronica Mikyla




Local winemakers, vintners, and members of the community gathered in grand style to celebrate the Napa Valley Vintners’ 75th Anniversary. The indoor/outdoor event took place at the main hall and amphitheater at the CIA at Copia. Guests mingled about and enjoyed a lively atmosphere complete with food, wine and live music by local band, Apple Z, and a special performance by Napa Valley High School’s marching band. Wines were poured served in commemorative limited edition bottles by founding members of the Association, BV, Larkmead, Robert Mondavi, Inglenook and Charles Krug. Today the Association includes over 550 wineries, representing a tradition of dedicated vintners and grape growers who work and care for this premier winegrowing region.

Cupcake Tower

Jennifer Lamb, Laura Larson & Mary Carpenter

Bart & Barb O’Brien with Jeff & Elaine Sieffert

Krug Commemorative Cabernet

Mitch Cosentino & Nils Venge



Andre Crisp & Darioush Khaledi



On August 24, The Napa Valley Grapegrowers and Napa Valley Farmworkers Foundation hosted the 12th Annual Harvest STOMP, raising a record breaking $2.32 million toward programs that preserve Napa Valley vineyards and provide educational opportunities and professional development for farmworkers and their families. The highly anticipated event draws 600 guests and features NVG member wines and local foods. Attendees donned festive ranch attire and danced the night away, celebrating the upcoming harvest.

John & Michele Truchard

The live auction

Leslie Richmond, Napa City Coucil Member Liz Alessio, Alicia Hardy - CEO of OLE Health

Lorenzo Trefethen, Congressman Mike Thompson, Melanie Trefethen

Dan Hoskins & Lisa Callan Hoskins, 2019 Harvest STOMP Co-Chairs

Lee Hudson




Napa Valley’s Silverado Resort and Spa hosted the PGA Tour Safeway Open September 23-29. The event included some of the top PGA Tour players in the world, including Phil Mickelson, who teamed with local Warriors basketball legend, Steph Curry in the pre-Open Pro Am. Crowds followed and cheered Sacramento’s own Cameron Champ on to his first PGA win. The 24 year-old dedicated the tournament to his ailing grandfather, Mack Ray Champ, who got him started in golf. The world-class event offered great food, wine and music all weekend. Crowds came in droves to watch Jake Owen, Bad Company and Rob Thomas perform as headliners in the weekend concert series.



Discover a ďŹ ne dining experience, complemented by an ever-changing landscape of lush Napa Valley.

W I N E T R A I N . CO M | 1.800.427.4124 WINTER 2019




B.R. Cohn Winery set the stage for the second annual Sonoma Harvest Music Festival during a two weekend show that included music, wine and picnicking on the wineries sprawling grounds. Presented by the organizers of BottleRock, the festival kicked off on September 13-14 with headliner Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals, followed by Lauryn Hill, Chvrches and Death Cab for Cutie on September 21-22. Over 6000 people attended the event, drawing locals and visitors from the Bay Area, Napa and Sonoma counties.

Mandolin Orange

The Record Company




Ben Harper

NV scene TRANSCENDENCE THEATER COMPANY – GALA CELEBRATION The award-winning Transcendence Theater Company returned to Jack London Historical State Park from September 6 -8 to present “Gala Celebration”, for a magical, final performance of its 2019 Broadway Under the Stars” series of main stage musical productions. Tony Gonzalez directed and choreographed a dazzling array of music, exhilarating dance and creative pageantry starring some of Broadways top performers and national touring professionals. The entertaining show was performed in the open-air theater of the historic winery and included a variety of Broadway musical favorites from West Side Story, Gypsy, Chicago, 42nd Street, Ragtime, and many more. Audiences enjoyed a pre-show picnic featuring Gourmet Food Trucks and fine wines provided by local vintners. Transcendence Theater Company is a non-profit arts organization driving awareness and raising funds for the Transcendence Arts and Values Education Fund.

Photo by Laura Larson

Photo by Ray Mabry



Photo by Ray Mabry

Photo by Ray Mabry

Photo by Laura Larson

John Toulze, Executive Chef/Owner of Girl & the Fig // Photo by Laura Larson

7 1/2"





BOX CO. Packaging



4 7/8" N A PA VA L L E Y, C A L I F O R N I A | W W W. N A PA W O O D E N B O X . C O M

One can search a lifetime hunting down an excellent Cabernet value amongst Napa Valley producers... Silver Ghost is a wine that fits this description. – 91 Points, Wilfred Wong


93 Points

The Tasting Panel Magazine

90 Points James Suckling

90 Points

Editors’ Choice Wine Enthusiast

90 Points Decanter

v i s i t Sil ver Ghost o r ask for it at your local fine wine retailer



NV Calendar The Napa Valley scene of upcoming parties, concerts, celebrations and events For up-to-date calendar listings visit and click on EVENTS at the top of the page

Truffle Festival

Lighted Art Festival

Restaurant Week



Join Atelier Fine Foods for a holiday tasting of Caviar. Enjoy free tastings of caviar while you peruse all the amazing cheeses, charcuterie and fine foods that Atelier has to offer. Offered every Fri-Sat-Sun in December from 3-6 pm. Atelier Fine Foods is an epicurean boutique in the heart of Yountville, offering a curated assortment of culinary delights. 6505 Washington St, Yountville CA 94599 Through December


Holiday elves have transformed the Wine Train into an enchanting holiday experience. Board the Santa Train to add some sparkle and spirit to your Christmas season. Sip hot cocoa, munch freshly-baked 26


cookies, and join in games and sing-alongs with a jolly cast of characters headlined by Santa himself. Watch faces fill with joy as we wind our way to the North Pole on a special mission to help Jolly the Bear. Treat the little ones to a truly magical, musical, and memorable family Christmas adventure! Two Departures daily through December 26 For schedule and tickets:

cultural landscapes and engage with the world as a space for expression and invention. Curated by Lowell Downey, the themes of the compelling and intimate works on exhibit are as varied as the artists’ personal experiences and perceptions. The exhibition will be on display at Lincoln Theater in Yountville through January, 2020. For information: 707-944-9900 or

Through January

January 1

Lincoln Theater is delighted to announce the opening of Scale Up: A Cultural Convergence by Bay Area Women Artists, a group exhibition featuring the works of Miki Hsu Leavy, Karen Nagano, Heather Wilcoxon, Arleene Correa Valencia, and Janna Waldinger. These dynamic artists explore

Start the year right with this annual New Year’s Day 5k or 10k run in Yountville. The Napa Valley Resolution Run begins at the Community Center and meanders through the town of Yountville along a portion of the Vine Trail, finally looping through the historic California Veterans Home in the western hills of the valley. Open to all ages and running abilities, proceeds from the



Napa Valley Resolution Run benefit the Napa Valley Vine Trail. For more information or to register:

Inside Track

What the Locals are Doing

January 11-19


Celebrate creative arts, technology and lights after dark. During this nine day festival, walk around and observe ~16 locations in downtown Napa, Oxbow and City of Napa showcase illuminations using light and light technologies created by local and international artists. Mediums will include light art, 3D video, mapping projections, lighted sculptures and projects that include technology or interactivity. From 6-10pm // Free to the public For more information and event schedule: January 18-21


The American Truffle Company returns to Napa with the 10th Annual Napa Truffle Festival bringing together two complementary aspects of European truffles: The best chefs in the world known for their truffle cuisine, and the best truffle experts/ scientists in the world. Gourmands and aspiring truffle growers alike will find a bounty of activities throughout the festival weekend to satisfy their appetite and curiosity for the flavor and knowledge of one of the world’s most prized and delectable foods. The Westin Verasa will serve as “truffle central” for check in and programs and will be extending exclusive, special room rates for Festival guests. For more information and tickets: Jan 26-Feb 1


Celebrate Napa Valley’s Terroir to Table food and wine culture from January 26February 1, 2020 as participating Napa Valley Restaurants offer multi-course prix-fixe menus for lunch ($20 or $30) and dinner ($38 or $48), Guests can try out the latest culinary hot-spots or revisit old favorites all week long. For a complete list of participating restaurants and dining options:

Meritage Crush Lounge Crush Lounge at the Meritage welcomes locals on Monday with half off bowling and appetizers. Sunday Night is Family Night with bowling for up to five people in one bowling lane including shoe rentals for $20 per hour. // 875 BORDEAUX WAY, NAPA • WWW.MERITAGECOLLECTION.COM

The Dutch Door Private chef Brent Pennington has taken his customers’ favorites and offers them for takeout via a Dutch door to his kitchen in Alpha Omega’s tasting room. Enjoy fancy dogs, Korean fried chicken, banh mi and Spanish fried chicken sandwiches, Thai chicken and turkey wraps and grain bowls. // 1245 FIRST STREET, NAPA (WINDOW ON RANDOLPH STREET) • WWW.THEDUTCHDOORNAPA.COM

Oxbow Locals Tuesday Locals head to Oxbow Public Market on Tuesday night from 5 to 8 p.m. when their friends gather for beverage and food specials like half-price bivalves at Hog Island Oyster Co. and a Margherita pizza and a pint for $15 at Live Fire. Some weeks they have events like police and fire fairs and live music. // 610 FIRST STREET, NAPA • WWW.OXBOWPUBLICMARKET.COM

La Luna Market Napa Valley locals know that the best buys – and some of the tastiest Mexican food – is at Mexican markets and food trucks. Mid-valley, La Luna Market & Taqueria in Rutherford is the place to go for tacos, burritos, tortas and quesadillas with a vast choice of meats and toppings that can be selected for each order, just like south of the border. // 1153 RUTHERFORD ROAD, RUTHERFORD • WWW.LALUNAMARKET.COM

Back Room Wines Blind Tasting Almost every Friday, Back Room Wines attracts fans to a themed tasting of wines from around the world. Aside from special pourings of Champagnes or rare wines, the most popular events are blind tastings on the first Friday of each month. It’s a great test for aficionados and vital for those preparing for professional exams. // 1000 MAIN STREET, NAPA • WWW.BACKROOMWINES.COM

NV calendar

featuring Downtown Napa’s best culinary destinations – all within walking distance. Advance tickets ($40) include specially prepared bites with exclusive drink specials, contests and prizes, making it a memorable culinary experience for anyone who enjoys food, wine, and downtown Napa. 5:00-8:00 pm- For tickets and more information: Februrary 6-9


Multiple Dates: December 19, Februrary 13, April 16, June 11


Walk, taste and sip your way through Downtown Napa vis a vis the Culinary Crawl, a walking food and wine tour

Join Yountville local wineries, restaurants and local venues to celebrate cinema with over 75 world class short films, select VIP film and wine events during this four day pop up event. Whether you like comedy, sciencefiction, thrillers or drama, these specially selected films have something for everyone, including special children’s screenings and Meet the Filmmaker events. For more information, schedule and tickets:

r e p u S ser ving Napa Valley

with information, entertainment and music!



Beyond the Valley January 24-25 Salem, Oregon

FIRST TASTE OREGON Visit the First Taste of Oregon for the complete experience of all things Oregon. Brew, Cider, Culinary, Wine and Spirits. Taster the own awardwinning wines from all regions of Oregon. Sip a whisky, vodka or gin from Oregon – more than just a wine show. Purchase samples by the glass or bottle and growler sales too. Learn about wine, how to make a great cocktail and using Oregon’s own products.

January 26-February 2 Key West, Florida

KEY WEST FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL The Key West Food and Wine Festival is a series of wine and food themed events showcasing a diverse range of wines and inventive cuisine, hosted by their passionate creators at iconic island locations. Over 30 events include waterfront sunset tastings, winemaker and chef collaborations and local funky events that present an authentic taste of Key West. The festival attracts thousands of culinary explorers from around the country who descend on the tropical island to escape the winter and delight their senses.

January 30-February 1 San Francisco, CA Good Morning Bob!

Middays with Big Rick

DriveTime with Julie Morales

Weekends with Gabriela

ZINEX 2020 Dine, Learn, Enjoy, Taste with legends and emerging rock stars of Zinfandel. ZinEX is a three-day wine and food extravaganza attracting wine lovers from around the world. Experience the classic character of Zinfandel at four extraordinary events featuring a diverse selection of wines and styles. The weekend includes a Opening Night Dining event, Flights seminar, Winemakers Auction & Dinner, and Grand Tasting. ZinEX 2020 features access to winemaker celebrities at three impressive venues, showcasing the talents of winemakers, chefs, and artisanal food purveyors.

JANUARY 18-21, 2019 10TH ANNUAL

world class cuisine meets cutting edge truffle science MICHELIN STAR/MASTER CHEFS




DIG TRUFFLES? rare and delectable black Périgord truffles aka BLACK DIAMONDS

will be discussed, demonstrated, paired with wines, and feasted upon for breakfast, lunch and dinner!



INTERACTIVE PROGRAMS lively, enlightening cuisine, science, myth and lore truffle orchard tours dog training demos and more

WILD MUSHROOM FORAYS at the height of the season ...and one big TRUFFLE MARKETPLACE Oxbow Public Market cooking demos truffle fare à la carte Free admission!

FRESH BLACK PÉRIGORD TRUFFLES for sale throughout festival weekend! Plus, win a truffle! Check website for locations and times.

Presented by American Truffle CompanyTM

Comcast Ch. 27 & 28, AT&T Ch. 99 Streaming at

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NVL things to do






apa Valley is full of impressive art at wineries, public spaces, galleries, and resorts, but nothing compares to the collection at di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art in Carneros. And there’s no better way to appreciate it than a guided hike on its 217 acres among its expansive outdoor sculpture galleries. The legacy of the late Rene di Rosa and his late wife, artist Veronica, the center lies on one of the first large vineyards in Carneros. Di Rosa bought 465 acres in 1960 and planted it when most wineries were skeptical of growing grapes in the relatively cool area. Since then, the region has proven itself perfect for grapes that produce sparkling wine, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir. Rene di Rosa (1919-2010) was a writer and a passionate collector of contemporary art. His vineyards let him create a world-class collection of art from Northern California. He and Veronica (1934–1991) used the proceeds from the sale of his vineyards to build an “art park” for the greater public to access and enjoy. The property encompasses an extensive gallery and visitor center by the 35-acre Winery Lake, once a small pond for irrigation. This gallery itself is worth many hours of contemplation; it houses a rotating selection of art. The present art count is 1,830 pieces from mid-20th century to the early 21st century, though, like all art institutions, it continually buys and sells its works. From this gallery, visitors are taken by a shuttle past the “front lawn” and massive abstract sculpture garden, to a cluster of buildings which include the di Rosa’s former residence and a large, garage-like administration building, which also contains some art pieces. The house, currently under restoration, used to hold an overwhelming collection of art in spite of being the di Rosa’s residence, but the pieces were removed when fires threatened a few years ago. Behind and beneath the home is another large gallery. The walk between the home and the garage leads visitors on a 1/3 mile path which offers breathtaking views of an expansive valley that serves as the canvas for the bulk of the sculptures. All of the work is created by contemporary Bay Area artists, some famed and others lesser-known. Some are hyperlocal, including glass art from acclaimed artist Gordon Huether. A large glass house is missing a few panes, and birds have happily taken up residence.

Birds are omnipresent in the valley, including hawks and eagles, keeping close eyes on the gophers and squirrels that have turned up soil building their burrows. Guests can visit the sculpture meadow alone, but a guide enhances the experience significantly.

Rene di Rosa had a bit of a quirk: he didn’t believe in labels or explanations on the pieces, feeling observers should experience each piece for its unique appearance. Every piece has a story, some fantastic, from the red Volkswagen hanging from a tree to a 65-ft. tall obelisk of office filing cabinets. Each drawer contains part of the artist’s beloved ancient sports car, which couldn’t meet clean air regulations, so was flattened, dismembered, and “filed” away, a satirical memento to all the process and red tape. While the docent guide carries a thick reference book about the pieces to assist with inquiries, visitors are asked what the pieces represent to them, each with their personal interpretation. One suggests a dragon of rusty iron, and others, shiny swaying skyscrapers from San Francisco, or even the Transamerica Pyramid.

The heart of the tour encompasses a gentle walk around the meadow, but with a guide, visitors can step over a rope barrier at their own risk to continue on a steeper path up the side of a small mountain. The path winds around a dramatic sculpture on a small knoll of red steel beams slightly decorated by irreverent birds. The view is very different from the valley below as visitors wind around the piece. The trail continues through a paddock formerly housing Scottish highland cattle from Long Meadow Ranch and a steep incline, which leads to more dramatic pieces. From the top, the view encompasses the sculpture garden and the rolling vineyards, and on a clear day, as far as San Francisco. The return takes a slightly divergent path, which leads to a massive, ancient Greek style gate. Nearby a grove of olive trees and a cluster of tables offer shade for those wishing to take a break. The two-hour adventure ends with a short ride back to the entrance and gift shop, which are worth visiting to explore more pieces of two-dimensional art. If there is time for refreshment after the tour, two of Carneros’ award-winning wineries, Domaine Carneros and Artesa beckon nearby. Both offer still and sparkling wines representative of the local terroir served with small bites and more spectacular views of Los Carneros. The two-hour hikes with a guide at di Rosa are booked by appointment on Friday and weekends. Open Wednesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. FOR MORE INFORMATION // 707-226-5991 5200 Sonoma Hwy, Napa, CA 94559



NVL things to do




he Napa Valley Wine Train offers one of the most memorable and entertaining dining experiences in all of wine country. Now it’s rolling out an exciting new experience for wine aficionados and mystery fans alike, the Murder Mystery Dining Tour. From its downtown Napa station, board the antique Pullman rail cars for a journey back in time. The vintage train, with its velvet banquette seating, brass embellishments, and restored mahogany wood paneling, sets the ultimate stage for a prohibition-era speakeasy turned murder investigation scene. Passengers are encouraged to don their best 1920s attire starring fedoras, sequins, tassels, and feathers to tap into their inner flapper or mobster. As the sun sets, the train embarks on a three-hour voyage, rolling through some of Napa Valley’s most picturesque stretches. As views of vineyards, quaint Napa Valley towns, and the flourishing Rail Arts District unravel outside the train windows, a threecourse gourmet dinner is served atop tables set with china and white linen. While the thrill of the train ride is a huge part of the 32


experience, the dinner itself is not to be outdone. The ever-changing seasonal menu highlights fresh and local ingredients, made to order in the train’s four onboard kitchens. Guests have the pleasure to order from six entrée selections including sliced tenderloin of beef, lemon-thyme roasted chicken, catch of the day, or pepper cured pork tenderloin. In true Napa Valley fashion, an extensive onboard wine list is also available, featuring over 40 different local wines as well as a sizable cocktail menu. Dinnertime passengers are also welcomed to bring a bottle of their own, and corkage fees are $20 per 750ml bottle. The Napa Valley Wine Train has a wine store and gift shop at the station which is another alternative to search the shelves for special wines before the trip. As the train makes a stop in St. Helena and begins its descent to downtown Napa, guests are invited to the dessert lounge where the murder mystery dinner theater begins. Coffee, along with the pastry chef’s daily creation, are served as the characters from Mafia Don Lou Zar’s Juice Joint are

Photo courtesy of Napa Valley Wine Train

introduced. Guests are welcomed into a world of mystery and mayhem by pinstripe suit and feather boa costumed characters who seat the audience members, explain the rules of the game, and assign suspect roles. The roles played by audience participants are usually those of suspects who are issued a backstory and light costuming, such as hats or glasses, to bring the plot to life. Teams are formed among fellow passengers, most frequently with one’s table mates, who must work together to gather information, trade clues, and uncover secrets. The immersive nature of the show encourages guests to get out of their seats and mingle with fellow diners while interrogating and bribing suspects. The goal is to solve the crime before the culprit runs free. Those who are correct in deducing the identity and the motive of the murderer receive an award and major applause from the audience.

This fully-engaging murder mystery experience is presented by an amazing cast of professional actors from the Murder Mystery Company.

Their comedic caper ensures an entertaining evening full of laughter, drama, and intrigue. It all adds up to be a dining experience far from a traditional night out. There are so many reasons why murder mystery dinners are on-trend as a popular date night idea. The fact that this murder mystery dinner takes place while riding the wine country rails elevates the overall

experience even more. The glory days of luxury rail travel may be long gone, but the Napa Valley Wine Train is keeping a glimmer of them alive through their daily dining experiences and annual special events. The Napa Valley Wine Train offers full and half-day tours with stops at many Napa Valley icons such as Grgich Hills Estate, Raymond Winery, and Castello di Amorosa. The train also offers additional themed tours, including a Hop Train, which explores the local craft beer scene and the Santa Train, a family-friendly adventure that runs during the holiday season. The Murder Mystery Train operates on select dinner trains throughout the year. Ticket holders are requested to arrive at 5:30 p.m. as the entertainment begins in the Station before the passengers board the train at 6:00 p.m. The train departs the Napa Valley Wine Train Station at 6:30 p.m.



NVL things to do

EUREKA A Truffle Revolution



or the longest time, Americans have savored the coveted truffles harvested in European countries. Now, the elusive black truffle is embarking on a revolution here on our very own culinary turf. Thanks to American Truffle Company™’s founders, Robert Chang and Dr. Paul Thomas, ‘black diamonds’ are now being cultivated in truffle orchards around the country. Chief Truffle Officer Robert Chang tasted his first truffle in 2003 at an Italian trattoria in Munich, Germany, where he ordered a simple preparation of tagliatelle pasta tossed with butter and topped with fresh shaved black truffles. It rocked his world. “It was love at first bite,” he said. Wanting to know everything about this incredible foodwhat, where and, most importantly, how to



grow them, he did some research and found Dr. Paul Thomas, one of the world’s leading mycologists at the forefront of truffle cultivation. They met in England, Dr. Thomas’ home turf, and talked truffles-for hours. Dr. Thomas was already working with truffle growers in Europe with plans to expand. Why not North America? In 2007 they launched the American Truffle Company™, focusing on the winter Périgord and summer Burgundy—the two most highly sought black truffles of the culinary world—and last year, Eureka! They harvested their first truffle right here in wine country. With orchards now spanning from the west coast to New Jersey in the east, as well as throughout 25 countries on four continents, they’re expecting to have a booming North American truffle business.


To build awareness of black truffles, in 2010, Robert launched the Napa Truffle Festival. That first year, people thought it was a chocolate event. Now in its tenth year, the festival presents a multitude of activities, including a seminar on the science/business of truffle cultivation for potential growers, and engaging, interactive programs where people can see, taste, and evaluate various species of truffles. There are also wild mushroom forays in a local forest, truffle orchard tours with dog training demos at Robert Sinskey Vineyards Truffle Orchard, and extraordinary culinary offerings prepared by Michelin star/master guest chefs from around the world, including cooking demos, two Winery Truffle Lunches (this year hosted by Del Dotto Vineyards and Raymond Vineyards) and a Truffles & Wine Dinner at La Toque. The festival weekend finishes on Monday, January 20 (Martin Luther King Jr Day), with a grand finale (free) Marketplace at Oxbow Public Market that gives the public an opportunity to see cooking demos, meet the truffle dogs, purchase truffle dishes à la carte and buy fresh truffles to take home (recipes included).

lightning bolts and devoured these godly gifts coated in goose fat. The Greeks and Romans used truffles for therapeutic purposes, believing they provided eternal health to the body and soul. In the middle

ages, the church condemned their exotic aroma as the creation of the devil, dubbing them ‘witch’s fare.’ Thanks to King Louis XIV, truffles made a comeback during the Renaissance as a culinary delicacy and a darling of the noble class. According to legend, truffles were discovered by a farmer who observed his pig digging the subterraneous mushroom up from the root of a tree. Truffles emit a scent similar to the sex pheromone found in male pigs, which drives the female pigs absolutely wild with desire. For years, sows were used for hunting truffles, but extracting them from their eager mouths proved treacherous, causing many hunters to lose a digit or two. Today, dogs are used for the hunt—by far, a more affable and obedient alternative. FOR MORE INFORMATION //


• 1/2 lb lardons, cut in 1/2” cubes (25-30 cubes) blanched first for 2-3 minutes • 1/2-1 cup mushroom broth (can use vegetable broth, chicken broth or, in a pinch, water) • 2 eggs (preferably ones that have been stored with the truffles), beaten


• Parmesan cheese

Truffles are an underground mushroom that grow on the roots of certain trees. There are thousands of species of truffles, but the most prized are the European Périgord black truffles (aka black diamonds), primarily known for their exquisite flavor. Because they are rare, they command exceedingly high prices; CBS News “60 Minutes” named them: The Most Expensive Food in the World. The dazzling, irresistible aroma of truffles has captivated humans for centuries. Their lore is mythical, filled with mystery and superstition. Ancient Egyptians thought truffles sprang from the ground where the gods struck

• Sea salt

• 1/2 lb fresh tagliatelle pasta • 1 fresh black truffle (approximately 2 oz)

DIRECTIONS: Sauté lardons for about 3-4 minutes in a frypan until crispy on the outside. Add broth and swirl pan to deglaze. Add egg and swirl pan again to mix ingredients. Place fresh pasta in boiling water and cook until just al dente, drain and add to the pan. Coarsely grate Parmesan cheese into the pan and mix all of the ingredients together. Add salt to taste and top with shavings of fresh black truffles.

Chef Ken Frank is the official host chef of the annual Napa Truffle Festival. Each year, he helps select the master guest chefs and provides his beautiful La Toque restaurant as the venue for the festival’s signature Truffles & Wine Dinner. Widely considered the top truffle chef of North America, Chef Ken holds the distinct honor of being the first, and so far the only, American chef invited to participate in the Fiera Internazionale Tartufo Biano D’Alba, the world-renowned Annual White Truffle Festival in Alba, Italy. He considers this one of his favorite and most user-friendly truffle recipes. WINTER 2019


NVL what's hot

Alpha Omega Collective Spanish Wines and Small Bites Alpha Omega Collective’s downtown tasting room pulls out all the stops showcasing their Spanish label, Perinet, produced in Spain’s Priorat region. Step out of the box and experience unique varietals such as Carinyena, Garnatxa and interesting blends paired with small bites prepared fresh and perfectly presented by Pennington Provisions. Open daily from 11 am-7 pm FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Hal Yamashita Opens in Napa Celebrity chef Hal Yamashita launched his first restaurant in the United States in downtown Napa’s up and coming Main Street location. The 21,000 square foot location previewed with a soft opening during September with a limited coursed menu of charcoal dishes and contemporary Japanese fusion cooking, and expanded to offer small plates and sushi in mid-October. The beverage

list includes local wine and beer and an extensive sake program. Yamashita developed his sense of taste from his upbringing in Kobe and his extensive travels which helped him develop his own style of fusion cooking. He rose to stardom as a regular celebrity on Japanese variety shows and accolades from his nine other awardwinning restaurants- six in Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: 1300 Main Street, Napa //

Feast it Forward Social Responsibility Happy Hour Join the gang at Feast it Forward on the first Tuesday of every month from 5:00-7:00 pm as they host their community network gathering, SOCIAL (responsibility) HAPPY HOUR to support local and national charities such as the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Expressions of Hope, Molly’s Angels, The Hero Foundation, to name a few. Proceeds from every glass or bottle of wine purchased helps make a difference to those in need. Rayna Toomajian, Dave Robertson, Erin Ratliff and Katie Hamilton Shaffer




Where one great moment folds into the next

9 Tasting Rooms | Cooking Classes | Fivetown Grocery Holiday Carolers | Concerts and More

Reserve your spot now for our holiday programming. Thanksgiving Dinner | Tree Lighting Ceremony New Year’s Eve Gala | Gingerbread House Decorating 850 Bordeaux Way | Napa, CA 94558 | @villagenapavalley

NVL what's hot

Momo House Opens on Clay Street Momo House Nepalese Restaurant opened on 10/21 at 1408 Clay Street in the space that was formerly Eight Noodle Shop. Open for lunch and dinner, the bistro serves traditional Nepalese-style dumplings called momo’s, stuffed with ground beef, chicken and vegetables. The menu includes a limited menu of pastas, seafood and lamb, several desserts, and a nice selection of wine and beer. The menu is slotted to expand in November to offer more momo options, seasonal fish and entrées. Open Wednesday - Monday // Dine in or carry out. FOR MORE INFORMATION: 703-637-4476

Vista Collina Live on the Green Celebrate the weekend! Enjoy live music, lawn games, and drink specials at Vista Collina on the Village Lawn Saturdays from 4:00- 7:00 p.m. and Sundays from noon – 3:00 pm. The Village’s nine tasting rooms offer beer and wine to pair with your experience. This family-friendly event offers a fun and relaxing way to rejoice in the weekend. Times may vary. FOR MORE INFORMATION:

The Station Napa Valley Petroleum under the new ownership of Joel Gott of Gott’s Roadside expand St. Helena’s Main Street Gas station to offer more than just gas. The long vacated retail space behind the pumps was recently renovated and opened in late September as The Station, offering home brewed coffee and fresh baked and prepared artisan food items for breakfast and lunch. The menu revolves around their coffee program, represented by San Francisco’s Sightglass Coffee and whips up espresso, macchiatos, lattes and their signature cold brew. Patrons may take their purchases to-go or hang out on the wrap around patio with community benches and umbrellas. The bright, contemporary space also has a dry good section that sells everything from flowers to fruit. Open Thursday- Sunday form 7 am to 4 pm in October and eventually expanding to seven days a week. FOR MORE INFORMATION: 1153 Main Street, St. Helena



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of the







Beckstoffer. name carries with it great

and grape


Quality, prestige, and distinction are synonymous with the iconic wine industry moniker. Tuck Beckstoffer, son of Napa Valley pioneer Andy, is fully aware of the heightened anticipation that originates with his storied Napa Valley surname, and he welcomes the expectation that comes with every popped cork of his various Tuck Beckstoffer Estate labels.


ou see, Tuck is the real deal, confident in his vinous pedigree and self-assured in his knowledge of the land, of the grapes, and the winemaking process. He grew up in this valley, having arrived in 1975 at the very beginnings of the wine industry boom, and he knows every inch, every soil type, and every weather pattern. He spent his youthful days on back-country roads and amongst the vines, cultivating metaphorical and literal roots that run deep, and developing a respect for the land that would eventually translate to the bottle. “You could say that my love for farming was innate, or at least came by way of relentless practice,” said Tuck. “I grew up with hands in the Napa soil, boots among the vines, and I often worked side by side with the vineyard workers - the grapes coming into maturity as I did. It was a youth spent exploring the land, slowly uncovering its rich history, and developing a deep reverence for it.” This reverence led to his career of seeking out the best land in the valley. Much like his father, Tuck is first and foremost a farmer, trained to recognize the inherent value and potential in vineyards that produce grapes and varietals that tell a ‘sense-ofplace’ story. And for more than three decades after setting foot in Napa, he was content with land hunting. But the love affair with grape growing

eventually led to an affair with the art of winemaking; only after mastering the art of the first craft did he turn his attention to the second, producing his first bottle in 1997. Neither a whim nor a passion project, this first bottling was a natural culmination of a life lived on the land, among the vines, carefully tending to its fruit. “Winemaking remains for me one of the only art forms that allows expression on the palate of everything I love about this land and my work within it,” said Tuck.

“Each sip of wine provides an indelible memory. This has been the case for me since producing my first bottle.” Today, Tuck is one of the few Napa Valley stewards who is both a grower and a winemaker. This duality provides him a deep understanding of the winemaking process and leads to a novel approach – one that begins in the dirt and culminates in the bottle – all the while respecting the winemaking traditions of the past and the shared successes and failures among fellow craftsmen and women.



“With a deep respect for everything that came before me, I continue to farm and practice winemaking as a way to pursue excellence on all levels and create an experience worth having, consuming, and remembering,” said Tuck. “It’s this quest that keeps my team and me thoughtfully moving the industry forward, carefully refining the process over time, and searching for ways to demonstrate the very best of what this valley can be.” With one eye on the future, and with the knowledge that he has always felt most at home within the



vineyards, Tuck has worked hard to build around him a team that can carry-on his growing vision for the Tuck Beckstoffer St. Helena Estate and for the valley. This team is a highly-skilled group of wine industry and hospitality professionals with innate skill, excitement for the craft, and contagious curiosity for the process - each of whom matches Tuck’s quest for excellence. Head winemaker Shawn Johnson recently took the reins after working closely alongside consulting winemaker Philippe Melka. Under Tuck’s direction, Johnson guides the winemaking team and overall process with a seasoned, steadfast hand. “Shawn

brings a wealth of experience and a fresh approach to both the winery and the vineyard,” said Tuck. “He shares the same vision that I’ve had since day one: to start with land, ripe with story and possibility.” Serving as chief operating officer of the Estate is Nathaniel Dorn, selected by Tuck to lead and propel the Estate visitor experience forward. Nathaniel’s leadership and hospitality acumen are widely admired. Formerly the director of three Michelin-starred The Restaurant at Meadowood, and partowner of The Charter Oak restaurant, Dorn’s relationship with exceptional service began at age 14 while

working at Chateau du Sureau and Erna’s Elderberry House Restaurant where the five-star European approach made a deep impression. An eventual degree in architectural and mechanical design and drafting provided him an unmatched approach to detail and design, and subsequent positions within some of the country’s top resorts and restaurants further established his thoughtful approach to hospitality. “Nathaniel is the perfect person to take the reins at the Estate,” said Tuck. “He is renowned for his expertise in creating exceptional teams and delivering unforgettable experiences, and he is leading us forward in our commitment to a culture of true service and awe.” That service can be found within every Estate visit, where intimate tours and private tastings are led by seasoned sommeliers who bring to life Napa’s history, illustrate how grape growing translates to every bottle, and provide background on winemaking techniques. Opened in 2016, The Estate exudes a genuine and congenial warmth; every 1.5-hour tour is private, exclusive, and tailored to particular interests. Included in each visit is a tour of the estate vineyard and winemaking facility followed by a cave tasting of estate wines. Highlighted is Mockingbird, the winery’s flagship wine and consummate expression of devotion to craft. “Mockingbird is the expression of everything we love about our land, our work, and our valley,”

said Tuck. A Cabernet Sauvignon derived from the most select barrels at the Estate, Mockingbird is organically farmed in the eastern Oakville mountains at 1,400 feet—an elevation well above the fog line—producing a wine of power, elegance, and longevity. “With each sip, this wine tells my story of growing up among the vines,” said Tuck. “As a farmer, I believe that a wine’s individuality comes from the vineyard and its complexity from blending various vineyards into one harmonized whole that truly reflects

our Napa Valley home and this wine is the truest expression of Napa Valley.” “The portfolio of wines is a tribute to Tuck’s experience over the years, each label a chronicle of a varietal that he loves or a distinct piece of land that he discovered,” said Dorn. “Every guest has a different wine that they gravitate towards, and each palate can delight in something unique. We are not an estate driven by one varietal, and this is a testament to Tuck’s deep curiosity and his commitment to the craft.”

“When I look back at my youth and ahead toward the future, I see one valley and a dream now realized,” said Tuck. “That valley is both the land of my youth and also the valley that I hope to hand over to the next generation of growers and farmers. That dream is, and has always been, to live on the land and carefully tend for it - the land yielding ripe fruit and that fruit telling a story of this time and this place. And then, at the end of a long day, to put that story to your lips, consume it, and gratefully share it with others.” FOR MORE INFORMATION



g n i u g i r t In 18 th




worth getting to know Contributors: Laura Larson, Fran Miller, Paul Franson, Janna Waldinger, Colin McPhail, Colleen Harmon & Hunter Boon





hef Kaelin Ulrich Trilling’s rise to Chef de Cuisine at Thomas Keller’s La Calenda in Yountville is the stuff of which dreams are made. At just 27 years old, Trilling’s culinary background proved to be just what Keller was seeking in filling the coveted position. Trilling’s mother, Susana Trilling, a celebrated cookbook author and Oaxaca-based cooking school proprietor, recommended her son for the position when Keller sought her counsel in filling the role. Brought up in his mother’s kitchen, wherefrom a tender age he witnessed countless cooking lessons and learned to appreciate the soul-satisfying impact of traditional cuisine, the Oaxaca raised Trilling sealed his vocational fate at age 18, when he moved to San Antonio, TX to serve as line cook for Chef John Brand at Hotel Omni La Mansión del Rio. Over the next nine years, Trilling packed his resume with stints at eateries in Tennessee, Mexico, London, and New York, perfecting his unique style of Mexican cuisine. “Growing up in a food-oriented household was a beautiful and unique experience,” said Trilling, who admits that his much younger self had no idea that the kitchen would become a career. He acknowledges a steep learning curve, one he expertly navigated thanks to his cadre of mentors. He recently celebrated one year working and living in the Napa Valley, where he finds many similarities to his home town in which he grew up, including the rural, agricultural lifestyle, and just as his mother taught him, he makes everything at La Calenda from scratch. “She’s the reason I can make a proper mole,” laughs Trilling. “I’m lucky to have her in my life.”

Photo by Bob McClennahan

Photo by David Escalante WINTER 2019




n Kelly Carter’s wall hangs an art piece that reads ‘She believed she could so she did.’ It’s her motto of sorts. “One of my sorority sisters always introduces me to others as the one person she knows who does everything she says she’s going to do,” says Carter, director of communications for Alpha Omega winery. Goal-oriented since youth, Carter decided at age 11 to become a sportswriter. Despite the discouragement of a USC journalism professor, she became the first female beat writer to cover the Lakers. When Carter decided to move to Europe, she ended up living in Positano and Florence for more than two years. When she decided to write a book, she moved to New York City and landed a contract to co-author a book with Venus Williams. Later, she was asked by National Geographic Books to write its first dog travel guide. More recently, while editor at Haute Living San Francisco, Carter opted to move to Napa to pursue a communications consulting business and was quickly recruited to Alpha Omega by owners Robin and Michelle Baggett. “I used to drive by Alpha Omega, envying the people on the terrace, wanting to be there myself,” said Carter. “It looked so fun! And now I do sit down with Wine Club members, media, friends, etc., and taste wine as part of my profession. People tell me I’m lucky to have lived in the places that I have and to have done what I’ve done. But it’s not luck. It’s creating a plan, visualizing and not just telling yourself that you can do it but believing it.” Photo by Lowell Downey/Art & Clarity

Photo by Bob McClenahan



apa Valley vintner Dave Phinney is no ordinary winemaker. And now, he’s no ordinary distiller. Prolific in his creation of new and extraordinarily popular wine brands and labels, the original founder of The Prisoner and Orin Swift wines has set his sights on the spirits world, and he’s selected Vallejo’s Mare Island as his muse. Working within three historic remodeled buildings on the former Naval base, Phinney produces whiskey, rye, and bourbon at his Savage & Cooke distillery – a moniker he selected in honor of the two surnames he continued to encounter while perusing Mare Island’s archives. He attributes his innovative nature to his parents, who, when Phinney was young, insisted on touring him through some of the world’s greatest museums. Fittingly, his Prisoner wine label featured a Goya etching. “During vacations, my mom and dad made me and my brother trek through museums in the morning before catering to our more youthful interests in the afternoons,” said Phinney, whose yuppie style belies his edgy and intense creativity. “At the time, we didn’t like it much, but now I do associate that early art exposure with my active imagination and desire to create.” Phinney would one day like to own Mare Island outright; he’s got a team actively studying the possibility. His dream is to turn it into a desirable destination – a grittier and edgier Yountville if you will, with restaurants, a winery, and wine tasting rooms, a coffee roastery, retail, and artisan studios that reflect the area’s historic/cuttingedge duality. The bones are there; it’s innovation and inspiration that are required – and both are Phinney specialties. Photo by Margaret Pattillo





amed ‘Best Local Winemaker’ by Napa Valley Life Magazine readers in 2016, 2017, and 2018, Sara Fowler has led Peju’s winemaking team and efforts for the past 13 years, while also serving as winemaker and director of vineyard operations for Peju’s sister winery Calmere Estate located in Carneros. During her Peju tenure, she has supervised the farming of the winery’s 204 acres across six estate vineyards within four appellations while also increasing the brand’s number of wines. She appreciates the creative license she’s provided to fine-tune vineyard practices as well as develop new approaches to blends. Said the Kelseyville native and mother of two grown sons, “My goal is to constantly improve the quality and focus of what we’re doing at Peju.” Within her first year, she successfully transitioned the estate vineyard to become an organic property, and today, in conjunction with the efforts of Ariana Peju, Fowler supports green initiatives within both the vineyards and the winery. Raised on a 400-acre organic ranch where farm-to-table food was part of the everyday lifestyle and not a social movement, she well understood the principles of farming and at age 12 was driving the family tractor. A talented creator of mixed media art, at one time Sara believed she might become a professional artist. But after working harvests and summers at Kendall-Jackson, she pivoted to viticulture. Fowler often travels and speaks as a representative of the Napa Valley winery community on behalf of the Rutherford appellation for which she serves on the board of the Rutherford Dust Society. When not at the winery, she loves salsa and swing dancing, drinking bubbles, reading, and cooking.

Photo by Richard Wood





s proprietors of St. Helena’s 750 Wines since 2009, Monica and David Stevens have been immersed in running their very distinctive retail wine salon that specializes in both private, curated tastings as well as high-end, limited production boutique wines, sourced from their vintner and winemaker friends in wine country. But that didn’t stop the philanthropic duo from establishing in 2014 the nonprofit Jameson Animal Rescue Ranch (JARR), a no-kill rescue and sanctuary based in Carneros, Napa Valley. Named in honor of Monica and David’s beloved Great Pyrenees, JARR is a sustainable education and solutions center for animal advocacy and rescue, providing programming that serves all domestic animals and their humans. Last year, more than 150 volunteers dedicated 12,344 hours to

Photo by Lowell Downey/Art & Clarity

JARR, helping save animals’ lives, and Monica’s tenure within the luxury lifestyle public relations and hospitality sector has elevated the organization’s annual fundraiser – WineaPAWlooza as one of the Valley’s most anticipated and spirited wine auctions. Monica and David met in 2006 shortly after she moved to the valley from Chicago; at the time, David owned another wine shop and played bass for Napa Valley’s beloved rock 'n roll band WRISTROCKET, with whom he continues to perform. The couples’ bond – based on their shared love of wine and animals - was immediate. In tandem, they have steadily grown the stellar reputations of both 750 Wines and JARR, and in spite of busy schedules and long hours, the pair practices what they preach, having adopted four of their own rescue pups: Betsy, Homer, Schnook, and Gunner.



ne may wonder how a tall man of Irish ancestry who doesn’t speak Italian and has never been to Venice ended up singing “Santa Lucia” while rowing an authentic gondola on the Napa River. Sean O’Malley probably does, too, but he’s having a ball doing just that. O’Malley has always been around water, and his father was in the Navy. Sean went to school in Saratoga, but spent a lot of time in Santa Cruz, where he developed his love for all things aquatic. His parents moved to Jupiter Beach, Florida when he was eight, but returned to the west during the summer and Sean ended up at Santa Clara University studying business and marketing; his roommate was future Gov. Gavin Newsom. He crewed there-good preparation for his present work. Unfortunately, his father died and he ended up completing his degree in Phoenix far from the

water. He joined IBM and technical financing companies, and returned to Santa Cruz to found a company he eventually sold. By then, he had married and they moved to Napa 12 years ago, living downtown and then buying a house with a dock in River Park. “I bought a boat and learned the Napa River,” he said. He led wine tours, then answered an ad for gondoliers. After training in Oakland, he started here and eventually bought the local franchise. A Venetian taught him to sing Italian folk songs, and he wears a striped shirt as he works. O’Malley admits that rowing the large boat, particularly against the wind, is demanding, but it obviously keeps the former college athlete healthy. When he’s not rowing, he coaches his son’s baseball team, golfs and caddies for Pro Am events. And, yes, he plans to visit Venice this winter to check out the original gondola scene. Photo by Laura Larson



Photo by Rocco Ceslin



hough many locals and visitors treasure Napa Valley for its casual ambience, others like fashion and glamour when they attend benefits and events. For those people, Helen Lyall and her son Scott are treasured resources. Premier clothiers and mother and son, Helen and Scott Lyall have adjoining retail store front spaces in the River Front complex in downtown Napa. Helen has been in the fashion business for 43 years. A native of Arizona, she attended the University of Arizona, then Wood Tobe-Coburn School for fashion careers in New York and worked for eight years at Abraham Strauss in Brooklyn before moving west to The City of Paris in San Francisco and James Sears in Vallejo. She also lectured about fashion and beauty on cruise ships then opened her store 35 years ago, moving to Napa eight years ago. In addition to selling elegance hard to find elsewhere in Napa, she produces fashion shows that support charitable organizations like Queen of the Valley. Helen shops in Europe and the U.S. to bring her devoted clientele current trends, but her personal service – like glasses of Champagne as they shop – are the extra touches that endear her clientele. Scott Lyall was inspired by his mother to get into fashion. He opened a store in Benecia in 1981 but moved to San Francisco in 1986. In 1992, he closed that store and went into women’s wholesale goods where he negotiated private labels that were produced in San Francisco long before high tech ruled. He followed his mother's lead and features premier fashion attire, specializing in sportswear. Both find business challenging, especially with the popularity of online shopping, but also recent fires. Much of their business is from tourists, however, and the future looks bright. Photo by Laura Larson

Photo by Paul Franson

KEVIN REID INTRIGUING COMMUNITY HEALTH ACTIVIST “We want the cure for Multiple Sclerosis to

come out of Napa Valley,” stated Kevin Reid, on 99.3 the Vine, promoting the 6th Annual Crush MS Summer Celebration. Kevin is the Co-Founder of the non-profit group Crush MS, an organization dedicated to bringing wineries together to eliminate MS.


rush MS is hosted annually at his family’s vineyard property, Reid Family Vineyards, where 30+ wineries come together to sponsor the cause. Over the past six years, through Crush MS, the Napa native has worked diligently to raise over $400,000 to support research for a cure and programs helping those living with the disease. Stricken with MS at age 22, Kevin’s advocacy for a cure comes from the heart. He tirelessly donates time and effort to bring the community together to offer encouragement and assistance. He created a monthly support group for people with MS in Napa and has worked with Genentech to designate March 28th as Progressive MS Day, an annual day which offers people affected by MS -patient advocates, healthcare providers, governments and industry- an opportunity to share stories online and show their support for people living with progressive forms of the disease. In 2018 he participated in the approval of state resolution (SR-86) recognizing Progressive MS Day in California. Kevin’s dedication to support and find a cure for MS has been recognized at the highest levels. For the past two years Congressman Mike Thompson awarded Certificates of Congressional Recognition to Crush MS for leadership and bringing the community together for such a worthy cause, and The National MS Society recently honored Kevin at the Silicon Valley Dinner of Champions by featuring his story at their fundraising event. When he’s not working for his family business, Reid Family Vineyards, the fifth generation Californian and former public-school teacher enjoys supporting the community. He serves on the Board of the Napa Valley Education Foundation, which provides resources for students and faculty of the Napa Valley Unified School District. Not one to miss a step, Kevin is already at work organizing the 7th Annual Crush MS Summer Celebration, which will be held on July 28, 2020.

Photo by Bob McClenahan Photo by Suzanne Becker Bronk 50 50


CARA MAE WOOLEDGE, MPH INTRIGUING COMMUNITY WELLNESS ADVOCATE “Running a farmer’s market is like running a small city,” Cara Mae states as she bustles through the Napa Farmer’s Market on Saturday morning.


er leadership and dedication to keeping the Farmers Market alive and vibrant for the people of Napa reflect her background and training in public health and provide the foundation that supports her passion for promoting health and wellness, a cause she has advocated for over ten years. Her charter goes beyond the Market offerings. She also manages the operations, which is no small feat. The market runs non-stop, which is unique to Napa since local vegetables and fruit are available year-round. Cara Mae is actively involved in giving back to the less fortunate members of the community. She

was instrumental in the success of building a partnership with Kaiser and acquiring a grant to fund a matching program that allocates double redemption on food stamps so recipients can optimize their purchases of fresh fruit and vegetables at the Market. The grant also provides local shelters with leftover food or cash to buy fresh produce to make healthy salads for its residents. Cara Mae’s devotion to the health and wellness of the people of Napa Valley provides inspiration and benefits, which assure a bright and vital future for all members of the community.

Photo courtesy by



t the helm of Sullivan Rutherford Estate since early 2018, Juan Pablo Torres-Padilla has a vision - to establish the most professional and wine-passionate team in pursuit of crafting the next ‘first growth’ wine from Napa Valley. Building on the 40-plus year foundation established by the original founder of the Estate he now owns, Torres-Padilla is determined to meld Sullivan’s rich history with both incremental and broad updates to the property to make it one of Napa Valley's next iconic estates featuring state-of-the-art winemaking and worldclass hospitality experiences. Born and raised in Mexico City, Torres-Padilla was introduced as a teen to the Burgundies and Bordeaux wines beloved by his maternal grandfather. His passion for wine flourished further during the 15+

Napa Farmers Ma


years he lived and studied in Paris where he earned a master’s degree in engineering and economics at France’s École Polytechnique, during which time he also made hundreds of visits to Burgundy, Champagne and Bordeaux, occasionally working harvests in the vineyard or cellar. After earning a master’s degree in the fields of policy, business, and technology from MIT, Boston, he returned to Paris to work in telecommunications, but the wine bug had bitten. He and his Mexico-based uncle began to search for a vineyard to purchase in Burgundy or Bordeaux until their attention turned to the Napa Valley. Said Torres-Padilla, “Not only did I fall in love with Napa as I started visiting more frequently, but also I’m convinced that no other place in the world can match Napa Valley’s combination of history, world-class winemaking technology and infrastructure, pioneering spirit and leadership, and of course the American fervor for entrepreneurship, disruptive innovation, and ambition.”

Photo by Jak Wonderly WINTER 2019




Photo by Lowell Downey/Art & Clarity

ick Walker tends to shy away from the spotlight, but as co-founder of Festival Napa Valley, Napa’s marquee summer event, the humble entertainment lawyer is increasingly recognized as one of wine country’s most philanthropic citizens. It was 2006 when Walker introduced to Napa what was then known as Festival del Sole, a summer event that brought together top music, culinary, and winery talent in support of the arts. “Margrit Mondavi once told me, ‘if you don't have a great museum in your town, you probably don't have a great town’ - and the same applies to a great music festival,” said Walker. “The Festival was a natural step in Napa Valley’s evolution from a center of wine and food, to a cultural destination.” Today, the ten-day music and lifestyle festival, held in July, includes more than 200 participating



eslie Silver brings the Napa community a current application of a classic paradigm of health. This understanding, which is the result of extensive study of Han Dynasty acupuncture, dates back to 206 BC. Her craft comes to life in her acupuncture practice, which blends ancient wisdom based medicine with practical insights, effectively treating a wide range of health challenges. Leslie believes hidden in the rhythm of her patient’s pulse is a signature of their well-being. Taking her patient’s pulse with the multiple levels of information it yields is one of the most illuminating aspects of her acupuncture therapy. Leslie considers over 27 pulse positions giving information on different aspects of the body’s major organs and their inter-relationships. This includes critical life experiences that yield valuable information for treatment and diagnosis. She then establishes an assessment based on what she hears, feels and observes

focusing on vital forces, which express themselves in one’s pulse, reflecting the way they move through the challenges of their lives. She reviews the images of the pulse readings with each patient, giving them an understanding of how to use that unique information to support their healing and wellbeing. With a wide range of tools and a gift for connecting with her patients, Leslie creates a plan to empower each patient. Her generous approach in sharing time, as well as knowledge, creates an experience that includes prescribing supplements and formulas to take her patients closer to their health goals. When she is not in her acupuncture clinic she can be found offering personal growth services, personal coaching, tarot readings and teaching folks how to deepen their intuition to learn to read their own Tarot. Leslie’s intriguing approach to healing is uniquely equipped to understand individual, personalized experiences to customize health goals. Photo by Janna Waldinger



artists, wineries, resorts, theaters, restaurants, chefs, and vintners, each dedicated to making the arts accessible to all. To date, the Festival's annual Arts for All Gala has raised more than $13 million for Napa County public school arts education, and programs such as the Festival's tuition-free Blackburn Music Academy, and summer camps for Boys & Girls Club students. “I think the community and the Festival are very proud of creating a bit of magic every summer,” said Walker. “We bring together fantastic artists who perform in beautiful settings – Napa Valley is our stage – creating special experiences. The result is an outpouring of interest and support for the programs we’ve developed with the schools, reaching every student in Napa County. We’ve seen firsthand how beneficial an introduction to the arts can be for young people.”




left the South to go to college, but the South has never left her. Her graceful hospitality (and pithy Southern colloquialisms) are the stuff of legends. Guests of her curated luxury tour business, Verve Napa Valley, leave wine country as old friends who can’t wait for their next visit. Like her mother, a trailblazing civil rights attorney who loved metal sculpting, T blends artistic flair with serious brains and a formidable work ethic. She completed B.A.s in Psychology and Art from Stanford University, with advanced degrees in the fields of Counseling, Education, and Design. Long before there was Festival Napa Valley, BottleRock, and rotating art exhibitions all over downtown, T was leading the crusade to nurture the arts in Napa Valley. She co-founded Napa Valley Arts and Lectures as well as the Napa Valley Film Society, and served as an appointed member of the Napa County Commission for Arts and Culture. Her career path to Verve has been as colorful as her personality, with stints as a marketing and outreach consultant, interior and graphic designer, event planner, art concierge, and co-founder of River School, Napa County’s first charter school -- to name a few Verve is far more than a wine tour company. T shows her guests facets of wine country only long-time locals get to see -- secret gardens, lesser-known hiking trails, cheese & beer tastings, private art collections and garden-toglass mixology classes, to name a few. Since starting Verve in 2012, T’s grown a cult following for her sabrage lessons. She says she’s probably sliced open almost 1,000 bottles of bubbly over the years, and has trained several thousands of people how to do it safely at home. Verve’s success centers around tailoring every itinerary to the guest, ensuring every tour fits as perfectly as a red suede saber glove. Photo by Suzanne Becker Bronk

Photo by Lowell Downey/Art & Clarity WINTER 2019






hen Kisha and Jason Itkin first visited the Diamond Mountain property they would come to own as Theorem Vineyards, it was love at first sight. The Houston based couple recognized the property’s potential and understood that the site's unique location - with its minimal fog, abundant sunlight, and volcanic soils - would yield greatness in the vineyard and in their finished wines. “It may sound clichéd, but something about that spectacular property called to us,” says Kisha, whose scientific background lends itself well to her role as Theorem’s president. “We could not necessarily articulate the feeling, but Jason and I both knew that we were meant to do something together on this special site.” Their efforts included the rescue and restoration of several historically significant buildings (including a one-room schoolhouse) dating to the mid1800s, the construction of a new cellar and tasting salon, and the preservation and replanting of the vineyard which had suffered from neglect. With the help of consulting winemaker Thomas Rivers Brown and Vineyard Manager Josh Clark, they slowly coaxed the vineyard back to greatness. Their flagship Voir Dire (a wink to Jason’s legal profession) and Hawk's Prey Diamond Mountain Estate Cabernets are delicious testimonies to their efforts. “We are not interested in trying to conform to any wine industry norm,” said Kisha. “We strive to showcase the best characteristics of what we can grow and produce, yet our motivation in founding Theorem goes beyond a love of wine. Over time we hope our daughter Alia will become imbued with our same sense of wonder and that she finds as strong a connection to the property as we have.”

rom the verdant valleys of Napa to the eighteenth century courtly French painters he often emulates, Ira Yeager derives inspiration from the many places he has at one time called home: Florence, Corfu, Tangiers, Santa Fe, New York City, San Francisco, and, since 1978, Calistoga. Born in 1938 in Bellingham, Washington, Yeager began drawing at the age of eight. His innate talent eventually led him to the California College of Arts and Crafts in San Francisco where he studied with Richard Diebenkorn, and then to the San Francisco Art Institute under the tutelage of Elmer Bischoff. Though he traveled and painted throughout the world, even the most exotic locales held no candle to the California Wine Country way of life to which he aspired to the role of ‘noble farmer,’ in the same way that the French nobility once escaped Paris for Versailles. A romantic nostalgia for this particular era permeates his artworks; members of the trades and guilds and humble peasants are frequent subjects, each whimsically portrayed with broad and bold brush strokes. Equally important within his portfolio is his series of Indian paintings, a theme to which he has returned again and again. Other subjects include Venetian masks, portraits, still life’s, and even eighteenth-century chaussures. Yeager loves the weather, the escapism, and the creative energy of wine country; much of his artistic output takes place in his Napa Valley Studio on the plateau of the Petrified Forest region above Calistoga. Yeager’s work has been showcased for many years in Laura Rombauer’s Napa Valley Vintage Home in St. Helena, and now as well at the new YEAGER GALLERY in Calistoga.

Photo by Carolyn Corley Photography



Photo by Brian Fuller

RAY HANSON INTRIGUING JACK OF MANY TRADES Ray Hanson doesn’t retire well. The firefighter tried in 2009, but he soon was busy again.


ortunately, he had 650 Cabernet Sauvignon vines growing in his acre lot in Coombsville that had been sold to Caymus Vineyards, so he started making about 3,500 bottles of wine under the Destiny Family brand.He also started offering wine tours, buying a limousine and both driving and hiring a driver, often retired or off-duty police officers. Operating as Destiny Wine Tours, he gets business mostly by word of mouth from previous customers, some of the best customers for Destiny wine, too. Otherwise it’s only sold online. He became the private driver for Michael and Isabel Mondavi yet found time to build a wine cellar containing an old tasting bar from Robert Mondavi

Winery and a 100-year-old fire pole, plus 12,600 pennies he and his daughter embedded in a resin floor. Hanson’s most inspired venture, however, is an homage to both him and his father, a former fire captain in Oakland: He bought a 1929 La France fire truck in Shelbyville, Indiana, brought it back and converted it into a wine and beer wagon. He added refrigeration and four taps and now offers drinks at parties, weddings and company events. He even scored the license plate “Eng 29”. Hanson is now building out a 28-ft. trailer and has a new Land Rover for tours. He’s not likely to retire again any time soon.

Photo by Laura Larson Photo by Leticia Velasco WINTER 2019




arcus fell in love with the food and wine scene of Napa Valley in the late 1990s when working at The Kitchen in Sacramento. As the manager and one of the wine buyers, he was very proud of the Wine Spectator award they received for the wine list he had curated. While building The Kitchen, he simultaneously worked for Paul Bullard as a Wine Rep and handled 36 different wineries in the Napa Valley representing legendary winemakers such as Philippe Melka, Heidi Barrett, Helen Turley, and Celia Welch, to name a few. In 2005, Marcus branched out on his own and he and his wife opened a restaurant called L Wine Lounge and Urban Kitchen, a wine bar, retail space and cocktail lounge with farm-to-table food. Marcus has been pivotal in the transformation of St. Helena’s food and wine scene. He was one of the original partners and GM of Goose & Gander, which introduced the mixology concept to Napa Valley. In 2015, he accepted a position to develop one of the most exciting and promising properties in Napa Valley, Brasswood Estate. Over the past several years, he has turned this property into a lifestyle destination with a world-class restaurant, premium winemaking facility, tasting rooms, and an art gallery. Most recently, he was brought on board by winemaker Joe Wagner to help develop and launch downtown Napa’s new neighborhood restaurant, AVOW. Marcus’s two decade tenure consulting people and businesses all over Northern California has made him realize that it is all about relationship building and creating the right team for the right projects. If he learns about something one wishes to do or create, he will do what it takes to help make it happen. He says with a smile, “Be careful of what you say because someone could be listening.” Even with his busy schedule running Brasswood, Marcus is always looking for somewhere else he can make an impact in the community. When he is not putting in time as the Chair of the St. Helena Chamber of Commerce or as Board member of the Boys & Girls Club of St.Helena/Calistoga, he is working on the second edition of his book “100 Things to Do in Napa Before You Die”.

Photo by Tony Manzo

Photo by Suzanne Becker Bronk 56




hen Kerrin Laz joined Dean & DeLuca in 2003 as wine buyer for the Washington DC store, she had little experience in the field of wine. Today, Laz oversees two eponymous Napa Valley tasting rooms - in Yountville and at CIA Copia in Downtown Napa - and is one of the most trusted consultants in the wine business. Considered a California wine authority, Laz is courted by every new winery hoping to make an impact in the industry, and her clients include many of the country’s top CEOs, celebrities, athletes, and other influencers who place their trust in her. Each of her tasting rooms offers customized, by-appointment-only, private wine tastings for the most discriminating palates and enthusiastic wine lovers who look to Laz and her team for invaluable insider perspectives on the people, places, and trends within California’s wine industry. “We ask guests on which winery mailing lists they are active, and what wineries they’ll be visiting to give us insight into their style preferences,” said Laz. “We’ve hosted more than 500 tastings and haven’t offered the same tasting twice.” In 2016, Laz added ‘vintner’ to her title when she released the inaugural vintage of her private wine label, LAZ Wine, produced in partnership with famed winemaker Celia Welch and served at some of Napa’s most revered restaurants. But despite her varied wine industry successes, Laz is most proud of her work with the Alzheimer’s Association. In honor of her mother, she founded ‘Inspire Napa Valley,’ utilizing her vast network to raise more than $2 million to date.



apa Valley is filled with performers, broadcasters, showmen, hucksters, and barkers. Some have even mastered the fine art of storytelling. A few of those have honed the most compelling skill a storyteller can acquire; the ability to know when not to speak and when to listen. This is what makes Paul Lange so intriguing – he has that ability. Originally from Tallahassee in Florida, Paul joined the Navy, then discovered he loved performing and spent twelve years in the acting profession in New York. After getting married, he and his wife Danielle decided to head out west and in time they landed in Napa Valley. He is Assistant Tasting Room Manager at ZD Wines. Earlier this year he decided to launch a project called ‘People of Wine Country.’ He puts his performer hat to one side and becomes a compassionate listener. Soft-spoken and intent, he draws out his subject’s most intimate stories with casual precision. His project participants reflect the diversity of Napa Valley and come from all walks of life. Paul’s stories are honest but forgiving. He intends to use this project to publish a book of the same name in 2020. Paul also takes very creative and professional photographs after the interviews. This helps him “see” his story subjects in a more complete way. In return for their participation, Paul gifts these photos to his subjects to use as they wish. To be a powerful storyteller you don’t need to acquire outlandish experiences like traveling to a foreign land or climbing an inaccessible mountain peak. Like Paul, all you have to do is look at your world a little closer and listen a little harder. He discovered his stories all around him, because as he has said, “The heart of every region is the people.”





Photo by Lowell Downey/Art & Clarity

eing born into her family, Bettina Rouas was almost predestined to own a restaurant like Angèle. She was born and raised in San Francisco, where her father Claude Rouas owned famed L’Etoile, and her uncle owned equally renowned Fleur de Lys. Her father went on to launch Auberge du Soliel in 1981, where Bettina spent a lot of time in the kitchen. Her tenure includes working at Piatti with Giovanni and Donna Scala before joining them when they opened Bistro Don Giovanni and spent four years working in Yountville’s Michelin Star corridor, including four years at the French Laundry.



cott Goldie, the president of the Napa Valley Wine Train, has so much happening at work that it’s a challenge to learn more about him personally. The train is a natural for Goldie, whose grandfather was a railroad engineer, but he was born in Montana and grew up in Washington. He studied international finance at George Washington University and got his MBA at Kellogg at Northwestern. His company is called Brooks Street and has evolved from a broker to an owner and operator of major projects. Its investments from San Diego to Napa include a plant nursery and cannabis farm in Santa Cruz, a hemp farm in Monterey and Santa Cruz and the new Angels stadium in Anaheim. Goldie heads the Napa Valley Wine Train, which has been expanding dramatically under his leadership since they bought the train with Noble House Hotels & Resorts in 2015. The train came with 17 parcels in the valley not



needed for train operations. Brooks Street has proposed a hotel with a grand train station to replace the existing station. It wants to build 55 employee housing units on the present Greenburg Motors lot. Noble House also owns the River Terrace Inn.Brooks Street owns Food City, the 1942 shopping center at Jefferson and Old Sonoma Road, and has proposed turning that space into a modern marketplace. It bought the First and Franklin tourist center and is transforming it into another marketplace and deli and also owns the Gelow, Borrenson building on the River at Soscol, where it plans a brewery, a distillery and apartments on the river. It’s a major supporter of the Rail Arts District displaying art along the tracks through Napa. That all keeps Goldie busy, but when he’s not working, he loves to travel. He has three motorcycles and a 55 ft. Hatteras yacht in Emeryville for fun, but he’s too busy to fully enjoy them.

In the early 2000s, Bettina presented a proposal to her Father to open Angèle. Named after her mother, who died in World War II, it opened in the newly restored Napa Mill in December 2002. “It's very French, an ode to my family,” she states, especially after a return to her roots four years ago. As in France, they use local organic produce. Angèle’s casual vibe and delicious French fare have remained a mainstay on Napa’s list of dining options for locals and visitors alike for the past 17 years. Her success is attributable to her dedication to sourcing organic, local foods and treating all of her customers well – and they keep returning.



aul Fields has a colorful history during his past 25 years living in Napa Valley. Trained as an ironworker, he helped build Oracle Park and the International Terminal at SFO. He also spent time as a correctional officer at San Quentin. While living in wine country, Paul developed a deep appreciation for quality food and wine and eventually pivoted his sights to embark on a culinary career. Over the years he developed a broad and comprehensive skill set working for Silverado Country Club, Mandarin Oriental Hotel in San Francisco, the Pebble Beach Company, and Oenotri, one of the Bay Areas’ Top 100 rated restaurants. When he was offered the opportunity to become Executive Chef at Napa’s award-winning Inn on Randolph, he found his niche creating interesting dishes using fresh, local ingredients. In 2016 he decided to start his own business, Twenty-Below, a catering concept focused on creating multi-course food and wine menus served in intimate settings for twenty people or less. While in the throes of recognized success, Paul was approached to become the Executive Chef/Instructor to run the Napa Valley Salvation Army Culinary Training Academy, a program designed to help adults coming out of hardship, homelessness, and substance abuse by offering them a second-chance to re-enter the workforce. Inspired by the opportunity he would have to help make a difference, he didn’t think twice. Paul trains the culinary students through a 15-week course teaching them everything from safe knife skills, sautéing, and planning menus. Graduates are offered jobs through partnerships in the hospitality industry. The program is changing lives. Since its launch, 87% of the program graduates have entered the workforce in the culinary field. In 2019, Paul expanded the program with the opening of Provisions café in the Napa Commons Business Park to serve as both a training location and a source of funding for the Culinary Training Academy. Paul's busy career took another exciting turn this year when he was asked to become chef to Grammy award-winning artist Zach Williams during his 22 concert tour throughout the United States. The eight-week tour has Paul serving up delicious dinners for groups of 50 or more VIP’s for Zach’s “Meat and Greet” events before each show. Paul’s passion for helping others, his focus on making food a foundational part of what life is all about, and the unwavering support from his wife Julie, inspire him to keep up the pace. Paul says “The work we put in is worth its rewards. Cooking and food are means to community, and a way to instantly make someone’s day.” Photo by Lowell Downey/Art & Clarity Photo by J Snider Studios



LOWELL DOWNEY & JANNA WALDINGER INTRIGUING PHOTOGRAPHERS Art & Clarity Celebrates 25 years of creating the extraordinary in Napa “Most of us pick up a camera, click the shutter, and have a snapshot. Lowell Downey and Janna Waldinger, click the shutter, and weave magic”, wrote Jim Brumm, local journalist and business consultant in Napa Valley. Art & Clarity, a photography and multimedia company, is celebrating twenty-five years in Napa. Owners Janna Waldinger and Lowell Downey are considered dependable experts in their field, having survived recessions, a digital revolution, and a couple of



earthquakes. The artistic duo’s innovation, professionalism, and resiliency enabled them to quickly establish themselves as a leading photography company in the Bay Area. From creating winery brand imagery, portraits to wedding, event and architectural photography, the long-lasting value of their work consistently exceeds their client’s expectations. Over the years they have photographed Napa Valley icons, local heroes, and intriguing people and

have been instrumental contributors to Napa Valley Life Magazine, producing a majority of their covers. Janna and Lowell have a robust portfolio of individual clients and are honored to photograph weddings and important family events. “Frequently clients come to us for a family or professional portrait, yet feel very uncomfortable in front of a camera,” says Lowell. “Sharing the images as we go helps to put them at ease. We have fun, and our clients walk away happy.”

Their photography and video assignments and commissions have taken them around the globe. Their art has been exhibited all around Napa Valley, including the Napa Valley Museum and in galleries and exhibitions on the west coast and beyond. This year they were honored to have their work on display at the Lincoln Theater, throughout the new Ole Health Facility, and at Peju Winery in the Rutherford Room where visitors can see their poetic vision of the Napa Valley. Several years ago they launched their Art of Seeing Adventures, which was published in the New York Times as one of the top ten photography adventures in the world. During this adventure, they teach their audience how to see differently, with or without the camera, and experience the natural world. Art & Clarity’s clients include leading Napa Valley and Sonoma wineries, Queen of Valley Hospital, Napa Valley College, Doctors Company, and businesses throughout the Bay Area. “Lowell is the consummate professional photographer – highly detailed and passionately committed to getting just the ‘right’ images that will tell the story instantaneously,” said Karen MacNeil, wine consultant and author of The Wine Bible. Lowell’s poetic eye has its roots in training he received at New York University where he earned a Master’s of Fine Arts Degree in Dramatic Writing. He is currently an adjunct professor teaching photography at Napa Valley College. Janna has touched the lives of many in Napa through her camera and her community commitment. “Janna is an incredibly talented photographer and trust I her implicitly with my important events” shares Jan Sabo. “I’m an out-of-the-box artist,” Janna says, “My father was a building contractor and professional photographer. He gave me a toolbox and a camera at the age of five. He taught me to see the world through the artist’s perspective. My mother served on the faculty of the School of Social Welfare at UCLA and instilled in me the qualities of community service. Having studied psychology and personality systems, I blend creative insights with the commitment to serve those in need throughout all my work.”

Janna and Lowell have influenced the lives of many in Napa Valley by volunteering to support community nonprofits. Following the birth of their son, Forest, Janna took an active role in education and has served on the Napa Board of Education for the past 22 years. She was active in supporting Stone Bridge School and the founding of the Waldorf-inspired Credo High School. Bringing together all these skills, she now holds a position as mentor for the vulnerable yet resilient students being served by the not for profit foundation, If Given a Chance. “I come from a creative mindset, “says Janna, “having spent a lifetime gathering tools to foster wellbeing. I am passionate about supporting people to show up well, have skills to achieve a mindset for success.”

Janna and Lowell built Art & Clarity with a contagious and never-ending source of creativity. As artists, they are dedicated to bringing Art & Clarity into the world.

Photos by Tim Carl WINTER 2019


Local Vintners Emerge as Big Fans of the Can In a shift from novel to normal, canned wine hits its stride  BY LAURIE JO MILLER FARR


hen the Oakland Athletics played the Milwaukee Brewers in a home game this August, a completely different kind of brewer and diamond were the attention grabbers. The Family Coppola was serving their Diamond Collection of 250ml canned wines: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Pinot Grigio, plus the canned wine trailblazer introduced in 2004, sparkling Sofia Blanc de Blancs. Thanks to a new three-year partnership between the A’s and the winery, fans at Oakland Coliseum are finding out how well canned wine pairs with wings, sliders, and hot dogs. In addition to the sports stadium, canned wines are being popped open at both predictable and surprising places, offered by boutique label producers as well as the big names. 62


Photo courtesy of Trinchero Family Estates

CANNED SUCCESS Another big California winery, Trinchero Family Estates, announced the release of its Pomelo label non-vintage Sauvignon Blanc and Rosé in 375ml cans priced at $6. With its summer launch, Trinchero joined other major wine marketers, including E. & J. Gallo, Foley Family, Treasury Wine Estates, and The Wine Group in contributing to the wildly rapid growth for the canned wine business. The evidence points to an escalating trend rather than a fad. For the 52-week period ending June 15, 2019, canned wine retail sales grew 69% to reach nearly $70 million, according to Nielsen. That’s up astronomically from just $2 million in 2012.

As canned wines undergo a consumerdriven shift from novelty to normal to your grocery shelves, it’s not only the larger wineries contributing to the trend of wine in cans. In Napa, local winemakers such as Larkin Wines, Three Clicks Wines, and Sans Wines are among those enthusiastically embracing the segment, perhaps a surprising space for quality, small production vintners.

IDEATION AND ADOPTION And why not? Canned wines are an idea whose time has come. Bruce Devlin, owner/ winemaker at Three Clicks Wines says that most people welcome it. “When we started our brand as an all screwball brand back

in 2006, I would say the resistance to it at the time was greater than what we’re now seeing with cans.” Where will the segment be in five years? Devlin predicts there will be two kinds of canned wine and nowhere in-between: “Those of us who put quality wine in a can and those who base it on price.” Over the course of 10 years, he doesn’t see much in new changes, because “the format is rapidly being adopted.”

ADVENTURE CALLS FOR CANS Besides enjoying wine in a can at ballgame bleacher seats, plenty of indoor and outdoor activities readily come to mind when a canned wine would be just the trick: A camping trip, hiking, skiing, kayaking, in a hot tub, on a houseboat, at a rooftop pool bar, a music festival, on a picnic blanket in the park, at the theater, the cinema or at a Broadway show. It’s just right for doorto-door dinner deliveries on the back of a scooter, too. Is this a use list that speaks to having appeal across generations? Absolutely. “The target customer is me,” said Devlin. “I grew up camping and enjoying the outdoors with my family.” The way Devlin sees it, “The format has so many applications, and we’re just at the tip of the iceberg. Just wait for all the sports events, airplanes, amusement parks, and that little golf cart that drives around the course with drinks to figure it out.”

Francis For Coppola, Oakland A's photo by Brian Boot

Photo by Laura Larson

TO KNOW THEM IS TO LOVE THEM Conundrum: Everybody knows that glass is not a good idea at the beach. Nevertheless, wine is a good idea at the beach. Sitting on the sand and chatting with friends, Yountville winemaker Sean Larkin (who calls himself a “devout and unapologetic hedonist raconteur”) got to thinking...and you can see where this is going. A hand-sized vessel for fine wine, why not? An “ultra-premium Napa Valley heavy hitter” in a can with a label that says LARKAN is where he took it. The beach resort community loves it. Sean Larkin says LARKAN is a big hit in “my second home, Nantucket,” where it’s served at Dreamland Film & Cultural Center; The Gaslight, a live entertainment venue; and The Nautilus Restaurant, listed on the menu under “wines from people & places we love.” “The Domaine Carneros rosé is a big hit, as is the Pritchard Hill white in a can,” Larkin said. “People try them in restaurants or pick them up at Mollie Stone’s and Gary’s Wine and Marketplace. I was so pleased with the request for LARKAN to commemorate the 25th anniversary of French Laundry, and that introduced new fans, too.” Larkin and other quality canned wine producers freely admit that for some consumers, it may take time to get adjusted to the concept. These are not bulk wines from maximum yield producing Central Valley vineyards. “At $12, it’s a deal,” said Larkin. “Remember, at 375ml, a can is a half-bottle of wine. People come over to my house and ask for a can, not realizing they’re actually going to

get a buzz on if they chug it like a soft drink or a beer. This is quality Napa wine.”

THE PRICE IS RIGHT At Sans Wine Company, husband-and-wife team Jake Stover and Gina Schober have been putting top quality, organically farmed wines into aluminum since 2015. It’s the first—and only—single vineyard Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon in a can; it never sees oak. “When you think about it, a can is a great vessel for good wine, like a small version of a stainless steel tank,” Schober points out. “Plus, the cans are lightweight and recyclable.” Typically, each can is lined with a thin plastic flavor-proof barrier because wine and a funky metallic taste don’t mix. There’s a trio of 375ml Sans cans: Carbonic rosé of Carignan, Sauvignon Blanc and Zinfandel, each with a suggested retail price between $10 and $12, and $25 for the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from Napa’s Three Jacks Vineyard.

TRAVELING LIGHT World travelers take note: Jack Edwards, a Napa-based direct wine importer, shares his wife’s genius idea for premium canned wine when traveling abroad. She places the cans of wine in checked luggage without having to worry about special packaging to guard against breakage. Upon arrival, simply relax and forget about room service, overpriced minibars, and rummaging around for a corkscrew.

Left: LARKAN French Laundry commemorative label Right: LARKAN Tinknocker can





ans, of course, means “without.” The list of things that Sans Wine Co. does without is a substantial one because they’re focused on sourcing single vineyard premium wine grapes from organically farmed vineyards. In other words: Sans Additives. Sans Chemicals. Sans Pretense. And the wine bottle is another thing they do without— Sans Wine Co. produces high quality canned wines. We caught up with the (super busy) owners, husband-and-wife team Jake Stover and Gina Schober, to talk about their focus on quality vintage varietals that have never seen a tank or barrel.

Q: How does wine in cans benefit someone who is budget-conscious yet would like to drink good quality Napa wine every day? If our wines were packaged in bottles, they’d be considerably more expensive. We hear that a lot of people want only one or two glasses of wine during the work week and don’t want to open a bottle for fear of wasting some. Consumers can enjoy a high quality Napa wine for less because the can production costs are lower than bottle production. Q: Tell us about distribution. Where can Sans Wine Co. be found on the shelves? We have distribution in 15 states. Our wines can be found at Whole Foods (in Texas), plus a number of small, independent grocers and wine shops including Sunshine Foods and The Charter Oak in St. Helena; Oakville Grocery; Oxbow Wine & Cheese, Trade Brewing and Brown’s Valley Market in Napa; La Calenda and Kelly’s Fuel & Provisions in Yountville and Mollie Stones in the Bay Area.

Q: Canned wines are receiving considerable attention lately. Yet some people still associate it with being cheap. Is there a big learning curve for the consumer? Yes and no—we have found that most consumers see our cans as a single serving rather than a half bottle of wine. Once they see that each of our cans is a little more than two glasses, the price makes sense, especially with ours being single vineyard wines produced in the Napa Valley. Considering what the canned wine industry was four years ago and with the canned boom of the last 12-15 months, consumers now see canned wine all over. Q: How well do 375ml aluminum cans work as a vessel for superior wines? The can is a very stable environment and the perfect vessel for us, especially because we make low intervention wines and don’t age our wines in oak. There’s no head space, no UV light penetration and 64



707-738-1064 // // @sanswineco

(almost) no oxygen in the can, so it’s essentially a time capsule for the wine as well. We are finding that our first vintage of wines are ageing slowly in can, and ageing incredibly well, too. Q: What comments do you most often hear from people who try Sans Wine for the first time?

“Wow, I didn’t know canned wine could taste this good!” “I can’t believe this is a Napa Valley Cabernet.” Most everyone is surprised at how good the wines taste, whether drinking from a can or pouring from a can into a glass.




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rowing up in the center of the Los Angeles entertainment industry, Trevor Sheehan had little exposure to the world of vineyards and winemaking. He spent much of his time on the Paramount Pictures lot where his father was a major league television executive, and his mother created commercials for many of the studio’s movies. The family home was transformed almost weekly into various locations for movie and TV productions. After watching the walls of the living room being splatted with fake blood as Kiefer Sutherland battled terrorists in his “24” TV series, Trevor would grab breakfast from the craft services truck in the neighbor’s driveway. While getting a master’s degree in business from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Trevor attended a taping of Jay Leno’s Tonight Show and told the comedian that he planned to work in accounting. Leno responded, “Ah accounting! The fast cars, the thrills, the travel to 66


Northern California. The visit inspired a move to Napa, where he was soon making 100 cases of Carneros Chardonnay that he sold by driving the cases around to local retailers and restaurants. Today, Trevor’s Precision Wines produces upwards of a quarter-million cases per year. The company’s top selling brands such as the Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignons under the Navigator and Precision labels, and the Oakville and Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignons under the Acclaimed label are sold all over the United States and Europe, and in 15 different countries around the world, including the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong, Japan, Vietnam, and the Dominican Republic. “I feel lucky to have a product that has taken me to fascinating places and given me the chance to form bonds with amazing people from varied backgrounds,” Trevor says. exotic locations,” which left him wondering if he should pursue a more exciting career. Soon after, the time he was spending at a local wine shop began to steer him in a new direction. At the shop, he joined up with a savvy group of oenophiles who expanded his knowledge of California Cabernet and French Bordeaux. His passion for the beverages inspired visits to producers and vineyards in Burgundy and other wine regions in France where he studied various winemaking techniques. On one trip, he was invited by the winemaker of the legendary Romanee Conti vineyard for a visit where he tasted the Domaine’s ’07 and other vintages from barrel. After securing his master’s degree, he took a job at Grant Thorton in Dallas. While enjoying a Chardonnay from the Sonoma Coast, he called the number on the bottle’s cork, which ignited a friendship with the winemaker who encouraged him to visit

“ No matter how great our differences, wine seems to transcend almost all nationalities and cultures and gives us a common language.” Trevor attributes Precision’s success to the fact that each one of his brands offers consistently great wine at an attractive price point with distinguished packaging that’s tailored to appeal to the intended markets. And to think that it’s all thanks to Jay Leno.


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THE YEAR IS 1967... Ronald Reagan is inaugurated as Governor of California; “Respect” is recorded by Aretha Franklin; The Vietnam War rages; “All You Need is Love” is released by the Beatles; NASA launches the first Saturn V rocket that will eventually take Americans to the moon, and the Napa Valley continues to produce absolutely beautiful, age-worthy wines. The 1967 Inglenook Cask H-11 from Rutherford represents one of the last few gorgeous bottlings from this grand wine estate before what collectors refer to as the “dark ages” of Heublien Corporation’s ownership of the Inglenook chateau. John Daniel had sold his family’s Inglenook estate, vineyards, and chateau to Heublien in 1965, but many of the vineyard crew and cellar workers remained in place, still with some philosophical winemaking ties and vineyard practices honoring the John Daniel era (1933-1965) of winegrowing. This particular bottle was acquired by a longtime Yountville, CA wine collector who had purchased it from the original owner, part of a grand collection of old gems in the cellar of a Victorian home in a historic neighborhood of Napa. The ‘67 Inglenook Cask H-11 was brought to Rutherford Wine Vault for safe deposit, ironically having traveled only from Rutherford to Napa and back to Rutherford in its whole lifespan. Since RWV is located right next door to Inglenook’s chateau, it was destined to be. The Opening: On a cold December evening in 2018, at the age of 51 years, this ‘67 Inglenook was drawn from the Vault and brought to dinner at the owner’s home, where coq-au-vin was awaiting the pairing for a cozy evening with friends. The old brick-red foil, embossed with the original Inglenook insignia was 68



12 1/2 % Alcohol Bottle discovered at a historic mansion in Napa in 2017, laying cool since original purchase.

cut, then the cork removed using a Durand corkscrew; the cork itself only soaked ½ up, incredible for the age, major ‘respect’ that the cork was still fresh. Aromatics: As the bricked-garnet wine was poured into each dinner guest’s glass, the first notes that jumped from the Reidel crystal was a brushy gentle herbal halo surrounding a core of dried raspberries with a beautiful dusty character wafting up around the table- Distinctively old Rutherford.

Opened on December 18, 2018 in Napa Valley.

Color: At the candlelit table, everyone could hold their glass up near a flame and see the crimson bricking glow, shining like the thruster of a Saturn V. The wine as translucent but not thin, very gorgeous and mesmerizing as it swirled. Palate: Gentle leathery red fruit, almost like dried soft flower petals, caressed the front of the tongue like a first kiss. While this vintage was never supposed to be as legendary as the 1941 or 1952 Inglenooks, one could see why this old Rutherford terroir is so coveted by collectors of fine things. The tannins proved to be so silky and soft that sip after sip was the equivalent of hearing a loving whisper close to one’s ear. Thoughts: With was a dynamic balance between lifted acidity, refreshing alcohol of 12 ½ %, and tertiary Napa Valley red fruit, all you need is love and some ‘60’s Inglenook.



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whiskey Napa Valley Vintners Hit the Bourbon Trail  BY LAURA LARSON


ith the rise of the cocktail culture and the craft distillation movement, the growing market of sophisticated drinkers has rekindled a passion for high-quality spirits, especially Bourbon. Over the past decade, Bourbon has evolved into a savvy market of boutique, handcrafted labels, some fetching more than $3,000 a bottle. Bourbon’s credibility as a quality spirit did not happen overnight. Since its introduction in 1789, it’s had a sullied reputation, often associated with



raucous men drinking cheap hooch from a shiner. Some of Bourbon’s newfound allure is attributable to the panache inherent with the boutique producers, each touting a unique mash, process, or flavor style. But Bourbon’s authenticity remains the same. Among other things, to be classified as Bourbon, it must be made of a grain mixture that is 51% corn, distilled to no more than 160 (U.S.) proof, aged in new, charred, oak barrels and produced in the United States.

While some distillers are branching out across the U.S., 95% of Bourbon comes out of Kentucky. Over the past 5-7 years, Kentucky’s Bourbon Trail has grown exponentially, resurging to become a world-class attraction and premier hunting ground for Bourbon enthusiasts. The region carries a cachet of prestige, similar to what Napa Valley has become for wine habitués and Cabernet Sauvignon, so it’s not surprising to learn it’s developed a particularly strong following among premium wine collectors and vintners.

There are parallels in the bourbon and wine businesses that offer vintners some key advantages. Besides possessing proficient olfactory systems and trained palates, winemakers understand the importance of barrel flavoring and building upon a strong base, whether it be the caliber of the grapes or the composition of the mash bill. From a business perspective, they have experience working the traps selling products in the alcohol industry, and most have an established reputation with followers who are loyal to their brand.


Lone Whisker was the outcome of a weekend trip Kent and John took on Kentucky’s Bourbon Trail. While there, they fell in love with the area and decided they wanted to create their own Bourbon label. Before they left, they signed a deal with a distillery. While driving back, they came upon a pick-up truck that had flipped over on the side of the road. In the bushes nearby was an abandoned old dog with a collar tag that read “Whisker.” They ended up adopting the dog—and a name for their Bourbon label. The Lone Whisker project was a long time in the making. The first batch was distilled in 2005 but was not released until

John Schwartz & Kent Jarman are considered trailblazers in the “adventurous vintners” movement of Bourbon making. Their label, Lone Whisker, was founded long before Bourbon became a trend. The two became close friends over a couple decades as esteemed Napa Valley wine producers, John best known for his labels Amuse Bouche and Au Sommet, created in partnership with Heidi Barrett, and Kent, as head winemaker for Kenefick Ranch and for his and John’s joint label, Coup De Foudre. Along with their interests in making and drinking high-caliber wines, they share a love for gourmet food and great Bourbon.

John Schwartz and Kent Jarman

2017. Leveraging their refined palates honed from years of winemaking, John and Kent work closely with their distiller in Kentucky to create their custom mash recipe. After the distilling process, they age it in new oak barrels for twelve to fifteen years. Today Lone Whisker produces approximately 2000 bottles per year and is sold on allocation, limited to one bottle per customer. Not surprisingly, it sells out before it’s bottled. John and Kent intend keep their production small so they can focus on quality. Their secret sauce is the blend of

their mash bill, comprised of 74% corn and a blend of rye and barley. The result is a high-quality, low-proof, sipping Bourbon with a flavor profile that is designed to maintain its continuity year after year. As a trained chef, John enjoys creating dishes that pair well with Bourbon. “I’m a purist. A good Bourbon should have a full mouth-feel but not dominate the palate.” When asked what the future holds, John says “My ultimate goal is to educate the world about the qualities of world-class Bourbon. I’d love to see it become a natural presence on food pairing menus and ultimately become part of the dinner table.” By the end of the year, Lone Whisker will be releasing its first 15-year-old ultra-premium label, “Dogfather.” With only 250 bottles produced, it is sure to become man’s best friend.

Besides possessing proficient olfactory systems and trained palates, winemakers understand the importance of barrel flavoring and building upon a strong base, whether it be the caliber of the grapes or the composition of the mash bill. From a business perspective, they have experience working the traps selling products in the alcohol industry, and most have an established reputation with followers who are loyal to their brand. WINTER 2019


MARK & SHERRI CARTER – OLD CARTER WHISKEY COMPANY Mark and Sherri Carter’s foray into the Bourbon business was unplanned. Best known for producing consistent 100-point Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon under their Carter Cellars label, they were having a routine meeting with a family friend discussing prospects of a custom crush opportunity. During the discussion, they became intrigued by a story about the family’s old Bourbon label, Kentucky Owl, which had been shut down by the Feds during prohibition. Instead of signing on a new crush client, they entered into a partnership to revive Kentucky Owl. Not having any background in the spirits business, it began as a passion project, but they soon realized they could use their experience making wine to bring unique nuances to the quality of the product. Mark says “We understand the significance of taste and the importance of barrels and blending. After years of tasting so many different wines, we’ve developed refined palates and recognize the subtleties of barrel flavors. So the very first thing we did was bring barrels into the program.” Using double barrels and different char levels to infuse more oak into the process, Mark and Sherri have mastered a blending technique that they feel makes all the difference in the finished product. Sherri says “This is not a one-level thing. It’s all about the flavor profiles. After years of tasting wine, I use the library of flavors that I have accumulated in the sensory part of my brain and focus on building a whiskey blend that imparts quality, texture, and flavors.”



Mark and Sherri Carter

Bourbon has evolved into a savvy market of boutique, handcrafted labels, some fetching more than $3,000 a bottle. Kentucky Owl went on to become a cult-style label that captivated the circles of Pappy Van Winkle drinkers. The project ended after a few short years in 2017 when the brand was acquired by SPI Group, best-known as the producers of Stolichnaya vodka. But Mark and Sherri were hooked. The very next day, they began searching for barrels and launched their

own Bourbon label, Old Carter Whiskey Company. Their strategy with Old Carter is to take things to the next level. The portfolio is a mix of barrels of rye, bourbon and American Whiskey at various stages of maturation. In addition to purchasing aged product, they are also distilling new-make in the state of Kentucky using their own custom mash bills. They are committed to quality over quantity, and it shows in all of their releases to date. Each batch is a blend of just a few barrels with yields ~1200 bottles per release. From the original label design created and numbered by hand through Sherri’s amazing artistic talent, their double barreling process, and attention to blending, they stay close to their product. By doing so, they have discovered unique ways to differentiate their offerings, including a newfound love for Rye and American Whiskey. The Carter’s run in the world of whiskey has been a whirlwind and at the same time, a patience game. While they have been busy creating and releasing products, they are also sitting on barrels which they won't see in the market for nearly a decade. Focused on what is happening now, the Carters have not thought much about what’s ahead. When asked where they want to be in five years, they smile and say “Anything's Possible.”

John Caldwell Photo by Suzanne Becker Bronk

JOHN CALDWELL – JFC WHISKEY John Caldwell is one of Napa Valley’s early winery pioneers. A maverick from the beginning, his most defining foray is his notoriety as the guy who successfully smuggled French grape clones into California in the early ‘80s in empty shoeboxes, a feat that ultimately ended up negotiating the first North American licensing agreement with the French Government to import and sell certified ENTAV-INRA wine grape clones. Planted back in 1981, Johns’ life work is now one of the most genetically diverse vineyard holdings in the state. His 123-acre property boasts 27 different

clonal Bordeaux varietals from which he crafts 21 different Caldwell estate wines. In 2014, under the expert oversight of Master Cooper, Ramiro Herrera, John began his own custom barrel program acquiring oak from ancient French oak trees directly from the source in France. While John is recognized for his four decades of growing grapes and making wine, he is new on the Bourbon scene. After trying it a few times, it never impressed him as a quality product. Several years ago, some “friends from down south” turned him on to Angels Envy, a Kentucky

Photos by Suzanne Becker Bronk

Bourbon finished in Port wine barrels. He liked the stuff so much, he later tagged along, just for fun, on a client’s professional whiskey buying trip to Kentucky. “I got down there and met with guys and started tasting through what they were doin’ and realized this was the real deal. These guys have been making this s*#t for over 200 years. I had to be part of it and bought nine barrels on the spot.” Ready to release the first of his JFC Whiskey (which stands for John F*@%ing Caldwell) in 2020, John’s strategy focuses on the finishing process. He buys single barrels of his favorite Bourbon at various stages between three and 15-years of age, then blends and finishes it in his Caldwell Port barrels for an additional six to twelve months. “Finishing Bourbon in a sweet oak barrel cuts the hotness and reduces the tannins. Because we use our own Caldwell Port barrels, we get to do all kinds of trials. We can create different flavor profiles through the various stages of the finishing process, which gives us ultimate control to make the really good stuff.” John likes to enjoy a three-finger whiskey nightcap or “mood-changer” as he calls it. He says, “Let’s face it. Wine is great with dinner or if you want to relax, but with Bourbon, you get to a whole different place.”



ENRIQUEZ ESTATE WINES Wine Country Living in the Russian River Valley  BY LAYNE RANDOLPH


anding a 23-year-old with no wine experience a vineyard and winery in California may sound like a risky move, but for Eduardo and Ana Enriquez, it has paid off. Less than a decade after they invested in a wine business with their daughter Cecilia, she’s now successfully running Enriquez Estate Wines on Eastside Road in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County. As a new winemaker, Cecilia sought out mentors in the winemaking world, and those relationships helped her understand the business and get it off the ground. Cecilia now handcrafts 600-700 cases of wine annually, focusing on small production and varieties unique to Russian River Valley, such as Muscat, Cabernet Franc, Tannat, and Syrah. 74


Her Tempranillo is especially well received — the 2013 Tempranillo Reserve was awarded a Gold Medal at the 2019 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. The 2013 Enriquez Estate Wines “Brisa” — a Sauvignon Blanc, Muscat, and Chardonnay blend — was awarded a Double Gold Medal at the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition in 2017. As part of her wine adventure, Cecilia met and married Winemaker Dana Von Sternberg, who crafts small lots of coolclimate varieties from California’s northern coast for boutique label Vokel Cellars. The name Vokel represents Dana’s winemaking philosophy – the vineyard speaks for itself. In contrast to Cecilia’s Enriquez Estate Wines, Dana’s Vokel Cellars focuses on Pinot

Noir and Chardonnay and Vokel’s wines are only available through word of mouth. It’s uncommon to find two winemakers married to each other but creating wine for different brands, especially when one of them represents a family-owned winery. When asked why they haven’t joined forces under one label, Cecilia replies, “We came together under different labels, and we make very different wines. We never really thought about joining forces.”

Each is committed to his/her own label and style of winemaking. They’ve focused on complementing each other’s work while building a wine country lifestyle together in the Russian River Valley. Cecilia and Dana live and work on the Enriquez Estate property, tucked away off Eastside Road near Forestville, surrounded by vineyards and quintessentially Sonoma County. Since it was purchased in 2015, the property has been completely renovated, including a beautiful milk barn that they’ve restored into a luxury, two-bedroom rental available for those seeking a rustic yet elegant getaway in wine country. During their stay, guests are treated to Enriquez Estate Wines and given access to massage therapists and private chefs for a truly premiere experience. Enriquez Estate is more than a winery and vineyard—it’s a wine country experience. Visitors to the estate can tour the beautiful 8.5-acre estate on ATVs, enjoying breathtaking vineyard views and then relaxing with a picnic lunch prepared by a private chef at the property’s lookout point. And in 2020, Enriquez Estate Wines will offer a “Brunch in the Vineyards” series highlighting local chefs. Enriquez Estate Wines offers a wide range of experiences, including a popular wine club program that offers members unique access to wine discounts, lodging, events, and activities. FOR MORE INFORMATION //

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Discernibly Different:


Ask any Atlas Peak grape grower, and he/she will attest to the difficulty in cultivating fruit within this highly elevated, rugged, and visually stunning landscape. But each vintner will also wax rhapsodically about the exquisite wines that result from this unique terroir.




ocated at 2,663 feet on the western slopes of the Vaca Range that separates the Napa and Sacramento valleys, Atlas Peak is known for its volcanic soils and its pure, clean, fresh, high altitude air that is cleansed by San Francisco Bay breezes. Those breezes, combined with the micronutrients derived from the volcanic soil, produce acclaimed wines known for their intense flavors and delicate, balanced tannins – wines that are considerably different from those produced within the valley floor. Though volcanic soils account for a mere 1% of the world’s surface, they contribute a much larger percentage of the world’s truly great vineyards. Within Napa, for instance, many of the valley’s acclaimed ‘cult’ wines are derived from high elevation volcanic vineyards such as those atop Atlas Peak. Vineyard developer William (Bill) Hill long ago understood the wine quality potential of Atlas Peak, leading him to develop what became the Antinori Estate and the Circle R Ranch. When Hill created Prime Solum in 2006 to produce single-vineyard Cabernet, naturally he included Atlas Peak as a source.

“ Perched above the fog line, Atlas Peak is blessed by the cool afternoon breezes that hit the southeast slopes of the mountain,” said Hill.

“This provides ideal conditions for longer hang times and the gradual development of phenolic ripeness – the components that make these wines some of the most intense and balanced in Napa Valley." First recognized as an AVA in 1992, Atlas Peak has been producing wines of renown since 1870 when vineyards were first planted in the area. Varietals at the time included Chasselas, Malvoisie, Burgundy, Muscat, Flaming Tokay, Mission, Riesling, and Zinfandel – for which the region was perhaps best known. Today, the AVA produces premium varietals used to create Bordeaux-style wines, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec, and Merlot. Grapes grown in the region also include Syrah, Marsanne, Sangiovese, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc. Atlas Peak growers supply fruit to dozens of wineries in Napa and Sonoma counties, helping to create some of the finest wines in the world. In addition, local vintners and winemakers produce, bottle, and market their own brands. And since its inception as a recognized AVA, producers now feature the Atlas Peak designation on their labels to help consumers recognize the regional characteristics and distinct style of Atlas Peak appellation wines. “Volcanic wines tend to be produced in small quantities from land that is extremely difficult to plant and farm,” said Igor Sill, Court of Master Sommelier and proprietor of and winemaker at Sill Family Vineyards high atop Atlas Peak where he produces 160 cases annually of Bordeaux varietals. “Valley wines receive greater hydration given the valley’s ample water table, but Atlas Peak grapes are often dry farmed; they hang longer on the vine before being harvested. It’s a hellish struggle that results in pure heaven.” WINTER 2019


“Atlas Peak mountain fruit is bolder with greater red-fruit characteristics. It can take a bit more time to age before revealing true complexity and depth, producing some of the greatest fruit Napa has to offer – in particular, our cabernet grapes which produce complex, complicated, balanced, elegant, and much less tannic wines. These vines are healthier, fresher and happier, resulting in brilliantly expressive, pure and aromatic wines – the result of the different climatic rhythm, cleaner air, and natural nutrient content in the soil.” 78


Photo courtesy of Hendrickson Family Vineyards

Testaments to these declarations are the accolades bestowed upon Sill’s wines: Robert Parker extended a 97 points rating to Sill Family Vineyards’ 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon vintage, and Wine Spectator rated it 98 points. Sill’s 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon received the coveted CWSA 2018 Wine of the Year award, the Double Gold Medal. Again testament to the quality of his wines is the caliber of the establishments in which they are found: The French Laundry restaurant, Solage Resort, San Ysidro Ranch, and Oakville Grocery. “Our vineyard throws such complex and complete fruit, with layers of flavor and nuance, that we don't need to mix with any other varietal or vineyard,” said Tom Dinkel, who with his former supermodel wife Marcie owns Dos Lagos Vineyards. “Dos Lagos Vineyards is simply magical; set on the ridge top of southern Atlas Peak, we have a cooling breeze every afternoon that ripples the lakes and cools the vines. The peace and beauty of the property are stunning,

and we are eager to be the best stewards of our land that we can be. Our sustainable approach is bee-friendly, zero-glyphosate, and fish supportive. This nurturing approach to our vineyards produces simply incredible quality fruit – as evidenced by our ability to offer at 100% Estate, 100% single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon.” Providing further testimonial to the exceptional qualities of mountain wines is John Szabo, eminent and highly influential Master Sommelier, wine critic, and one of the world's foremost authorities on the subject of volcanic wines. “Genuine mountain wines are born from stony, low-fertility, free-draining hillsides,” said Szabo. “They’re denser, darker, quite often more tannic, yet more evenly ripe at lower alcohol, and they age magnificently. The vines themselves grow more slowly; they struggle and naturally yield less fruit per hectare. For a vine it’s probably hell. For a winemaker and wine drinkers, it’s much closer to heaven. And some of the highest and most rugged

Napa vineyards are planted in the Atlas Peak AVA, where reputation is disproportionate to size.” Adds renowned and influential Bordeaux-based oenologist Michel Rolland, “Growing these mountain grapes is difficult and the growing season tends to be considerably longer. However, the final result is a grape expressing intensity of stellar quality as difficult growing conditions often lead to extraordinary wines.” Atlas Peak AVA members include 4088, Acumen, Alpha Omega, Antica Napa Valley, Atlas Peak Wine Labs, Bianchini Family Vineyards, Black Stallion Estate Winery, Box W Vineyards, Circle R Ranch, Dos Lagos Vineyards, Elan Vineyards, Hardten Family Vineyards, Hendrickson Family Vineyard, Hesperian, Hill Family Estate, iNapaWine, Lagniappe Peak Vineyards, Lischewski Family Vineyards, Llamas Family Wines, Lobo Wines, Michael Mondavi Family Estate, Philary Vineyards, Prime Solum, Sill Family Vineyards, Soda Canyon Ranch Vineyard, Stagecoach Vineyards, Stonum Vineyard, Trinchero Napa Valley, and Vinroc Wine Caves. “The success of our committed and quality-focused Atlas Peak winemakers is in their respect for this unique terroir and based on their collective leveraging of their experience, training, and knowledge as members of Atlas Peak’s Appellation Association,” said Sill. “Volcanic wines have been touted in Italy for years. Here in Napa Valley, these wines are finally acknowledged with the recognition they deserve. Many are just now starting to understand the beauty behind these wines, and to recognize their power, one needs to understand Atlas Peak and the natural organic harmony of this beautiful AVA.” FOR MORE INFORMATION



Stagecoach Vineyard

Hill Family Estate

Hendrickson Family Vineyards Antica Napa Valley Soda Canyon Ranch Vineyards


Elan Vineyards

Bianchini Family Vineyard

iNapaWine 121

4088 Wines VinRoc Wine Caves

Dos Lagos Vineyards

Circle R Ranch







Hardten Family Vineyards







Hesperian Wines






Sill Family Vineyards Lobo Wines Tjian Family Vineyards


Box W Vineyards







NC H The Atlas Peak Appellation is an American Viticultural Area encompassing 11,400 acres high above the Napa Valley. It's lofty elevation and rugged mountain soil produce wines of superior class and distinction. Visit us at






TASTE OF ATLAS PEAK The Atlas Peak Appellation hosted its annual AVA celebration at on September 28 at the Ranch House at Black Stallion Estate Winery. Thirteen boutique vintners from Atlas Peak AVA showcased their world-class wines in an intimate, walkaround setting. Gourmet appetizers were served accompanied by the funky, live blues music from the Hummingbirdz. A Silent Auction was hosted featuring hard to find wines and library vintages. This was a rare opportunity for wine aficionados to sample and purchase premier Atlas Peak wines from wineries that are normally not open to the public in a single setting. Participating wineries included: Acumen Wine, Alpha Omega, Antica Napa Valley, Black Stallion Estate Winery, Dos Lagos Vineyards, Duckhorn Vineyards, Hesperian Wines, iNapaWine, Lobo Wines, Michael Mondavi Family Estate, Prime Solum, Sill Family Vineyards, VinRoc Wine Caves.



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NVL wine spotlight

Winery First Date Inspires Couple's Foray into Winemaking


Photo by Daniel Mangin


an a California gal turned European supermodel find post-career bliss farming mountain grapes with her businessman husband? For Marcie and Tom Dinkel, the answer is a resounding yes. Since 2007 the two have grown Cabernet on their 22-acre Atlas Peak estate, selling two-thirds of the fruit to a major winery, reserving the remainder for their well-regarded Dos Lagos Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon. Marcie, who grew up in Northern California, headed to Paris in the mid-1970s less than a year after being discovered by the Wilhelmina Agency. As ‘Marcie Hunt,’ she appeared on nearly 100 European magazine covers—Elle, Marie Claire, Tattler, and British and French Vogue among them. In the early 1990s, after she’d retired from modeling, Marcie met Tom, who whisked



her up Mt. Veeder to The Hess Collection on their first date. They were moved by founder Donald Hess’s story and made a goal of owning their own vineyards one day. From 2007 to 2015, Robert Foley, the founding winemaker of Markham, Pride, and his eponymous label, crafted Dos Lagos Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon. Though known as a master blender, Foley surprised the Dinkels by suggesting they produce a single vineyard, 100% Estate Cabernet. “He told us there was nothing he could do to make the wine any better, nothing he needed to boost, support, or enhance with other varietals.” Kent Jarman (Kenefick Ranch, Coup de Foudre, Joseph Kent) has taken the winemaking reins for Dos Lagos and is continuing with their unique barrel program: for the first

year the wine ages in neutral barrels before being put in new French oak for the remainder of its time before bottling. The other constant with Dos Lagos Vineyards is the commitment to sustainable farming. “When vineyard manager Hector Lopez first started working with us, our request was simple,” Tom said. “Don’t do anything in the vineyards that would harm frogs or bees.” The vineyards have been Glyphosate-free for over a decade, and the Dinkels have urged neighboring growers to adopt a similar sustainable no-Glyphosate approach. How good is the resulting wine? Writing in the St. Helena Star, columnist Catherine Bugue, the director of education at the Napa Valley Wine Academy, compared the estate Cabernet favorably to Harlan, BOND, Screaming Eagle, and other cult wines.

“As soon as I put this Dos Lagos 2015 to my lips,” she wrote, “I knew there was a new player in town.” Marcie, whose creativity extends to painting, comes up with a new label for each Dos Lagos vintage and varietal, including the recently added Sauvignon Blanc and a separate Cabernet blend. A few local outlets carry the wines, but most are sold directly through allocation.


ALTA NAPA VALLEY Engaging the Eye and the Palate  BY FRAN MILLER


f it’s true that the label sells the wine, then it would be surprising to find Alta Napa Valley varietals on any retail shelf. The eye-catching graphic images of the owl and bear that grace this winery’s five wines are the creation of proprietor and vintner Fred Oliai. Both creatures are frequently sighted atop his Atlas Peak vineyard, thus the homages, each an illustration of the rugged terrain as viewed from the animals’ perspective. And while graphically compelling, it’s what is inside each bottle that is even more captivating. Alta’s flagship is 2015 Oso Malo Cabernet Sauvignon, a tribute to a grape loving bear that frequents the property before harvest. Oso Malo received 93 points from Robert Parker, as did the 2015 Revival Cabernet Sauvignon. The 2016 Carneros Pinot Noir received 92 points, as did the Quatreaux red blend – a fusion of four different grapes, picked and co-fermented at the same time. And Alta’s 2017 Sauvignon Blanc was roundly lauded by numerous reviewers. For Oliai, winemaking begins with the vines and the land, and his 11+ acre Atlas Peak vineyard provides consistently amazing fruit, as do the other quality vineyards from which he sources. New to Alta’s estate acreage is a 22-acre parcel along the Silverado Trail, anticipated to be productive by the 2021 season, at which time Oliai hopes to become an all estate winery.

“Our philosophy is that great wines are made in the vineyard,” said Oliai. “We also strongly believe that wine and food should pair well together, and we strive to make wines that complement good food.”

Despite Alta’s positive scores and solid press, the winery flies slightly under the wine industry radar, and for now, this is just fine by Oliai, who makes limited quantities (approximately 2,500 cases) annually at the Wine Foundry, where tasting appointments may be arranged. For a more intimate experience, tastings and vineyard stays are also available to reserve at Alta’s Atlas Peak vineyards. The Oliai’s first purchased the Atlas Peak acreage in 2008. “We instantly recognized the magic and amazing potential of this site,” said the former distiller and brewer, who since 2009 has provided his Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes to neighboring Kongsgaard Wines. Oliai’s first vintage was his 2009 Oso Malo of which he made 220 cases and released in the fall of 2011. It quickly sold out. “The unique Atlas Peak terroir, along with our meticulous attention to detail, allows for little intervention. Our wines express the unique and diverse character of each of the Napa Valley’s vineyards with which we partner – vineyards chosen for their sustainable farming practices, site elevation, and microclimate.” Oliai can cite additional scientific and environmental reasons for the quality of his wines, but for the consumer, it’s the taste that counts. “Simply put,” he says, “We make really good, fruit-forward, small production wines.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION Alta Napa Valley wines can be purchased online or at fine restaurants and wine shops throughout California.

In Napa they can be found at Brannon’s in Calistoga and Oakville Grocery //



HESPERIAN WINES Striving for Perfection on Atlas Peak

Cabernet blend of grapes from Kitoko and a Coombsville vineyard.

Rather than make a splashy entrance, Langner’s soulful yet structured wines cast a slow, subtle, profoundly satisfying spell.



alfway up Atlas Peak, surrounded by scrub oaks, chaparral, and manzanitas, Philippe Langner of Hesperian Wines meticulously farms, mostly by hand, his hilly, rock-bestrewn Kitoko Vineyard. Hesperian’s owner, winemaker, and viticulturist, the cosmopolitan Langner reserves the majority of its grapes for his flagship 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. Named for the 14-acre vineyard, elevation 1,350–1,450 feet, the collector-worthy wine is, like its creator, lyrical, intellectual, passionate, refined, and resolute. Born in El Salvador to a German father and French mother, Langner was raised mostly in Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (Kitoko means “beautiful” in Lingala, a Bantu language spoken there.) Plants fascinated the future winemaker from an early age—so much that he pursued dual master’s degrees in agronomy and agricultural economics at UC Davis. Upon graduating, though, he took a job—as a banker. 84


“It was terrible!” Langner recalled recently with a laugh. “I did M&As (mergers and acquisitions) for six months, and that was it.” Luckily for him, the bank-owned a Bordeaux winery. One of his bosses suggested Langner explore the wine business, and to his surprise, “I fell in love with all aspects of winemaking,” he said. “Particularly the many adjustments that occur in the vineyard to achieve the best possible fruit.” Langner credits his four-year stint in France and subsequent nearly decade-long run at Sullivan Vineyards in Rutherford with helping him appreciate how vineyard and cellar decisions reverberate throughout a wine’s life. The challenges of Atlas Peak, whose craggy terrain begets vigorous tannins, required him to devise regimens to create wines suitable for aging yet supple enough to drink young. In addition to the Kitoko Cabernet, Langner produces a 100%

Private tastings, most conducted by the genial winemaker himself, begin with a drive to Kitoko, whose southernmost blocks afford San Francisco views on a clear day. The vineyard excursion complete, Langner escorts guests to the Kitchen Collective, a private restaurant in downtown Napa, where he pours the two current Cabernets and an older vintage that illustrates how gracefully the wines age. Another way to sample Langner’s output is by attending the winemaker’s salon at the Kitchen Collective on the third Saturday of the month. “I bring wines of varying ages, and we taste them one by one with the wonderful food made here,” said Langner. “Sometimes we have a special guest speaking on a specific topic, but often the conversation about wine just goes where it goes.” Many people who collect wine describe it as a personal journey reflecting their evolving palate, interests, and knowledge. Those who follow Langner’s career accompany the winemaker on a similar voyage as he strives to achieve his goal of “a perfect, honest expression of Kitoko”—and by extension, Atlas Peak—in the bottle. FOR MORE INFORMATION

VINROC WINE CAVES Like the Vines of Atlas Peak, VinRoc Continues to Thrive  BY EVE BUSHMAN


ver 20 years ago, Michael Parmenter and Kiky Lee constructed a home, planted vines, dug a cave, and built a winery high on the east slope of Napa Valley, nestled below the majestic Atlas Peak. Their property and home of their award-winning Cabernet Sauvignon, away from the crowds on Highway 29 and Silverado Trail, is known for having one of the most “visually stunning” views of the heart of Atlas Peak. It’s hard to believe fires raged through the area two short years ago.

WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY VinRoc is a small boutique family-owned and operated winery with a hands-on approach. Parmenter handles the vineyard management and winemaking himself, while Lee, a creative and artistic talent, is responsible for marketing and design. If Parmenter were pressed to name a challenge, it would be growing grapes in the rocky volcanic soil. But the terrain has its rewards. Their estate vineyard isn’t vigorous, producing small clusters and berries with low yields of less than two tons an acre. Because the vines have to struggle in volcanic rock and red soil, there is no need to stress the already strained vines to enhance quality. The result of the rocky hillside vineyard is an intense Cabernet Sauvignon, the hallmark of VinRoc. The grapes from their estate vineyard are harvested in separate one or two-ton batches, which sometimes take weeks to complete to ensure that each ton has reached the optimum maturity. The individual batches are fermented and barreled separately and aged for two

years in French oak. Parmenter himself tracks each batch throughout the winemaking process before being blended for bottling. The outcome: a highly-complex and balanced wine with a limited production of fewer than 1,000 cases per year.

VISITING THE ATLAS PEAK LOCATION “Atlas Peak is one of Napa’s larger appellations,” Parmenter proclaims. “I was president of the association for a time. Some in the wine business didn’t even know where it was back then. It was mostly growers up there, as there are now, and the grapes are in demand from many well-known Napa Valley wineries. It’s truly a ‘significant’ wine scene.” The name VinRoc is a nod to the rocks found throughout the mountain vineyard. With elevations around 1,600 feet, high above the rest of Napa Valley, the vineyard benefits from warm days and cool nights, which are perfect for wine grapes. Their rockhewn wine cave is ideal for aging their wine, as well as proving to be a secure haven from natural disaster, allowing VinRoc to continue to thrive. A limited number of tasting appointments to visit VinRoc are available each week and must be scheduled and booked in advance. It is a true destination winery “with more coyotes than tourists,” Parmenter explained. As far as the fire that destroyed their home and other buildings, Parmenter and Lee look on the bright side of things and quip “After losing everything, now it's easier to pack.” FOR MORE INFORMATION WINTER 2019


NVL wineries


Encore Career Results in Applause for Krys and Randy Wulff  BY EVE BUSHMAN


he Wulffs had twenty plus years in non-wine related businesses before embarking on their “encore career” with Lobo Wines. For Randy, it was twenty years as a trial lawyer followed by another twenty as a nationally recognized mediator. For example, he was selected to preside over and resolve in New York the record setting property damage claims at the World Trade Center arising from the tragedy of 9/11. Krys (pronounced “Chris”) spent over thirty years as a management consultant.

SO WHY MAKE WINE, AND WHY “LOBO”? As Randy explained, “We are definitely doing this for love. I quickly learned that it’s more fun to crush grapes than to squeeze lawyers.

And when someone opens your wine and likes it, it’s just satisfying—much like we cooked dinner for appreciative guests.” The winery name, Lobo, is Spanish for “wolf.” They chose the name to honor the Hispanic workforce in the Valley. Randy explains, “Without their skill and dedication, this Valley would grind to a halt.” Krys is very involved in the wine blending. Randy says, “She has a great palate and, fortunately, she’s also terrific at marketing.” Krys oversees their mailing list, “The PACK,” and their wine club, “ALPHA.”

ABOUT THE WINES AND WINE TEAM An early lesson for Randy was that you can make bad

wine from good fruit, but you can’t make good wine from bad fruit, so fruit quality is paramount.

All Lobo wines are 100% sourced from their family vineyards in the Oak Knoll District and Atlas Peak AVA. Lobo sells 75% of their fruit to other ultra-premium wineries like The Prisoner, Mumm and Lewis Cellars, however, they keep select rows or blocks for their own label. The Lobo wines are critically acclaimed and consistently receive scores in the 90’s. Their newly released 2015 Napa Valley Cabernet is on the cover of the current Decanter magazine as the highest rated of almost 200 California Cabs reviewed. The product line includes a Rosé of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, a proprietary red blend of Syrah and Cab called “HOWL,” and two separate Cabernet Sauvignons— one from the valley floor and one from the rocky volcanic hillsides of Atlas Peak at 1300’ elevation. The primary winemaker for Lobo is Victoria Coleman, a rising star who graduated from the UC Davis enology program and trained at Chateau Mouton Rothschild. She is now on her 11th vintage for Lobo. The Lobo Chardonnay is custom made for Lobo by celebrated Napa winemaker, Randy Lewis. Vineyard manager, Mario Bazan, with time under his belt at Robert Mondavi, planted the Wulff’s first vineyard 20 years ago and still works for Lobo. All of the Lobo red wines are made at The Caves At Soda Canyon, which the Wulffs partly own. It is a fascinating 20,000 square foot network of Caves, available by appointment for tours/tastings. Visitors frequently call it their “favorite stop.” The views overlooking Stag’s Leap and the valley are truly spectacular. Just like one critic once described a Lobo wine, it’s a “show-stopper.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION // //The Caves At Soda Canyon // 2275 Soda Canyon Road, Napa, CA 86




arilyn Hendrickson grew-up on the Atlas Peak acreage on which she now grows some of the valley’s most sought-after Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. The Foss Valley property called simply ‘The Ranch,’ has been in the family for 100 years, and was utilized by her dad, Pop Debb, and his father as a weekend getaway where friends and family gathered for hunting expeditions and holiday celebrations. Hendrickson vividly recalls the family picnics that took place atop Soda Canyon Road, only then it wasn’t really a road – more like a dirt path for which her dad cleared the way with his bulldozer. “I remember winding up the canyon to the gorgeous views overlooking the rolling valley,” said Hendrickson, who maintains a great love for this land. “I delight in the feeling of duty and privilege to do all that is possible to maintain this special property.” When her dad passed away, Hendrickson considered her choices for the prime acreage that suddenly belonged solely to her. With an eye toward the future, she decided to optimize the rich, red volcanic soils by planting a vineyard. But the former accountant who ran a small tax practice didn’t know a thing about growing grapes. She enrolled at Napa Valley College in the early ’90s, studying with Dr. Stephen

Krebs, Ph.D., Director of Viticulture (with whom she continues to consult) and found that she loved it. Today, Hendrickson personally farms and oversees her 60 acres (on which she shares a fence line with both Stagecoach and Michael Mondavi) of Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon grapes and an additional 11 acres within the Coombsville AVA on the property she calls home. Her daughter Arianna Lyall, a former Deloitte & Touche CPA and Director, is her CFO, and her son Charles, a businessman and racing enthusiast, is equipment and operations manager. Their spouses Michael and

April are also actively involved with the vineyard, as are Hendrickson’s grandchildren Charles, Ava, and Jake. (Hendrickson raised Arianna and Charles as a single mom after their dad - the love of her life passed away at an early age.) Hendrickson sells her premium grapes to a number of esteemed wineries, such as Jamieson Ranch, whose winemaker Linda Trotta appreciates Hendrickson’s passion for growing the best Cabernet Sauvignon grapes possible. “Marilyn is very connected to her land, and she’s proud of that land and her family’s heritage,” said Trotta. “Her passion spoke to me. And the wine made from her grapes is delicious. Whenever I bring distributor reps and salespeople to the winery I always end their visit with a tasting of Marilyn’s Atlas Peak Cab. It literally raises eyebrows; it’s memorable.” “I’m very particular about how my vineyards are farmed,” said Hendrickson. “And this attention to detail results in high-quality grapes year after year. Great soil, a great climate, superior rootstock and clones mean that my clients get a superior product every time. I love this land, and it’s a true honor to care for it.” FOR MORE INFORMATION: WINTER 2019


NVL wineries


...And Sourcing the Best at Antinori Family Vineyard in Atlas Peak



ike and Kathy Stonum, sibling vintners, know first-hand about managing risk. Ask how they built a winery from scratch, squeezing in all the hard work on top of day jobs, in the span of just one generation, and without a fortune in the bank to support them. Kathy explains that it boils down to one thing. “If you have a dream, you’ll figure out a way to make it happen.” And they did. Sadly, Kathy has now had to say goodbye to her partner and brother, Mike Stonum, who recently passed away. As he was a natural dreamer and planner rolled

into one, she did the research, and together they budgeted and made educated guesses. Beginning in 1979, they planted 17 acres in Lodi to Zinfandel grapes and developed rapidly as self-taught winemakers. “Did we have the money to hire a winemaker? No. We’re regular people,” said Kathy. So they went through their paces, beginning with passion, followed by learning, making, experimenting, tasting, perfecting. “It’s important to love the experimentation when you’re the ones doing it. Just forget vacations.” After even more experimentation and a newly built facility, the first release of Estate Stonum Zinfandel was in 2011 (“That’s all we had the money for…”). Kathy and Mike still intended to tackle their ambition to make world-class wines. After a highly successful foray into Sauvignon Blanc sourced from The Towne Vineyard in Calistoga,

extensive research led to the high elevation Chardonnay and Cabernet “pristine grapes” growing at the Antinori Family Vineyard in Atlas Peak, Napa. Knowing that high altitude makes for flavors that are more intense, concentrated, and longer-lasting, they knew this was the spot to match their goal of always sourcing the best. Because it’s about quality over quantity, they purchased three tons, a good fit for this small producer. “The key is starting with the best grapes we can possibly afford,” said Kathy. “Wherever we go, it’s always single vineyard, and we always pay tribute on the label to the grower.”

“ Our mission is to capture the intense flavors and complexity while preserving the balance and integrity of the fruit. Our wines will always faithfully represent the terroir from where they originated.” The Stonums rented a 40-foot refrigerated trailer. “Never an open-top truck,” Kathy added, due to the importance of keeping red grapes at 45º Fahrenheit prior to a cold soak to maximize color and flavor from the skin. They made two separate trips at dawn within a month— first for three tons of Chardonnay, returning to the winery to crush, press, and send straight to barrels to ferment and age. The next trip was for three tons of Cabernet which was cold-soaked, fermented, pressed and barrel-aged. Back in Lodi, talking about the “huge amount of attention to details” and educating tasting room visitors is in Kathy’s DNA as a lifelong educator. The Stonum’s brand philosophy is best reflected as, “We specialize in single vineyard wines hand-crafted in an old-world, minimalistic style which allows the character of the fruit and the terroir to emerge.” FOR MORE INFORMATION:

NVL day trip

JACK LONDON SQUARE Hot on the Oakland/Alameda Wine Trail  BY FRAN MILLER

Just an hour drive from Napa, Oakland and Alameda’s cool nautical breezes provide a welcome juxtaposition to the hills and valleys of wine country. The two Bayfront locales have reinvented themselves multiple times throughout the decades, and the current incarnations are arguably the most vibrant. Anchoring the area is Jack London Square, one of Oakland’s most identifiable landmarks. Situated along the estuary, the mixed-use promenade is Oakland’s only publicly accessible waterfront area, and the shops, restaurants, and lodging options that line the lively venue take full advantage of the maritime views.


ent a kayak and hit the water. Bring a bike and pedal in sync with the sailboats gliding by. Load-up on fresh fruits and veggies at the Sunday farmers market. And though far from the valley vines, the wine is abundant. Downtown Oakland alone features eight wine tasting rooms and 14 wine bars – many of which are located within strolling distance of each other in Jack London Square. Oakland’s Urban Wine Trail and the tasting rooms of Alameda Point meander amongst reimagined airport hangars and renovated warehouse spaces where brick walls, high ceilings, and sliding garagestyle doors provide an edgy contrast to Napa’s genteel tasting rooms. A few of our faves, and a couple bonus activities in the area:


Named for the area’s former Brooklyn identity (yes, Brooklyn was a city in Alameda County in 1856), and for coproprietor/winemaker Stew Epstein’s wife’s east coast birthplace, Brooklyn West is best known for its Riojastyle wines; Epstein crafted the first Tempranillo in the US to earn a 90-point score from an American wine review publication. Brooklyn West’s range of smalllot wines are from some of California’s top vineyards, from the Central Coast to the Sierra Foothills. The gray-hued, communal tasting lounge features a bar, individual tables, and a bookshelf stocked with board games. Grab some takeout from the Sunday farmers market and settle in. Weekdays 5pm-9pm, Saturday 12pm-8pm, and Sunday 12pm - 6pm. 201 3rd St., Oakland



Mimino // Photo by Alison Christiana


This expansive and airy wine shop focuses on small-production, independently owned wineries that follow sustainable practices in farming, sourcing, winemaking, and workforce. Interestingly, these particular vintners/wineries appear to also have an eye for design. Stop in if only to survey the incredible variety of original and artistic wine labels. Find domestic on one wall, European on another, and Rosé in the middle. More than just a retail wine shop, Minimo is a neighborhood gathering space in which to enjoy and learn about wine. Co-owner Erin Coburn is dedicated to connecting people with the stories behind unique wines, and to building a community of wine lovers, regardless of expertise level. Tuesday-Friday 12pm-8pm, Saturday 11am – 8pm, Sunday 11am – 7pm. 420 3rd St., Oakland


Oakland’s original urban winery, Rosenblum Cellars opened in Alameda in 1978 when the area was known for its docks and shipyards rather than for winemaking. Today, the Rosenblum Cellars wine tasting room is just steps from the Oakland Ferry Terminal. Bay and estuary views enhance the relaxed, light-flooded indoor space and its outdoor patio where a wide variety of California sourced Zinfandels and other Rhone-style wines are poured Monday - Thursday 11 am - 7 pm, Friday - Saturday 11 am - 9 pm, and Sunday 11 am - 7 pm. Enjoy a tasting, have a glass, or share a bottle with friends while relishing the views. 10 Clay St., Oakland


Located just a few miles beyond Jack London Square, Côte West is noteworthy as one of only two urban wineries in Oakland making its wine on-site. Husband and wife team Bret and Kerrie Hogan use grapes from premium California vineyards and old-world, minimal intervention techniques to produce single varietals including Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Rosé of Counoise, Grenache, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, and Cabernet Sauvignon. The tasting room is open Saturday and Sunday from 2 pm to 6 pm with winery tours available weekdays by reservation only. 2102 Dennison St., Suite A, Oakland


Now located in Alameda’s Spirits Alley, Dashe Cellars anchored the Jack London Square wine scene for 15 years before its recent move, and it makes our list for its incredible bay and city views. It was 1996 when Michael and Anne Dashe selected an urban warehouse in which to craft their Dry Creek Zinfandel, with the belief that wine lovers shouldn’t have to travel


Bonus: A food truck is on-scene every Saturday. 1951 Monarch St #300, Alameda


View from Dashe Cellars tasting patio

to wine country to taste exceptional wines. In their new location – a historic airplane hangar - the duo remains focused on producing exceptional, single-vineyard wines using a non-industrial approach including small-lot fermentation, the use of indigenous yeasts, and little-to-no fining or filtration. Open Thursday-Sunday 1 pm-7 pm; drop-ins welcome. Reservations required for groups of eight or more.

Find produce, food craft products, and breakfast and lunch vendors at this vibrant outdoor market that lines the waterfront every Sunday, rain or shine. Founded in 1989, the market is operated by CUESA – Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture, a nonprofit dedicated to cultivating a sustainable food system through the operation of farmers markets and educational programs. Make sure to visit the CUESA Food Shed for a free seasonal tasting and to pick up easy and delicious market recipes to take home. Kids love the CUESA Kids’ Corner crafts and activities. Every Sunday, 10 am – 3 pm, yearround, rain or shine. Palm Plaza, near Jack London’s Cabin.

Rest your head Enjoyed the wine trails a little too much? Rest your head at the Rosenblum Cellarsadjacent Waterfront Hotel. The name says it all; rooms are poised towards the bay and a sparkling swimming pool fronts the harbor. A central lobby fireplace provides warmth on foggy nights while the complimentary evening wine hour encourages camaraderie. Nautically decorated, this Joie De Vivre hotel, part of the Hyatt family, is a prime example of the brand’s ethos – unique accommodations reflective of the vibrant neighborhoods in which they are located. For sustenance, don’t miss the hotel’s Lungomare restaurant where house-made salumi, pastas, and gelato are served with a view. Chef Melinda Vaca applies traditional Italian technique to pasture-raised meats, seasonal produce, and heirloom grains to create a blend of old world and new. A great selection of on-tap wines and beers allows for sampling of the best local brewers and vintners. 10 Washington Street

Yoshi’s began in 1972 as a small, North Berkeley sushi bar owned by founder and namesake, Yoshie Akiba, alongside her two best friends Kaz Kajimura, a journalist and carpenter, and Hiroyuki Hori, a painter and Japanese cook. Over the next 40 years, Yoshi’s built itself into one of the world’s most respected jazz venues, earning a reputation as the Bay Area’s premier location for great Japanese cuisine and jazz music. Today, Yoshi’s is an award-winning 310-seat live performance venue with a state-of-the-art sound system and design, occupying 17,000 square feet in the heart of Oakland’s Jack London Square. Under the guidance of current Artistic Director Daniel Grujic, the venue has expanded its focus to include broader genres suitable to a variety of musical tastes. Cote West Tasting Room // Photo by Adrienne DeAngelo

Jack London Square Farmers Market


NVL people & art

KENT PARKER Transforming Natural Mediums into Evocative Works of Art  BY JANNA WALDINGER


ent Parker creates timeless functional art pieces in wood that will be cherished for generations. His home is like walking into a sanctuary where the fine details of his home are personally hand-crafted in fine wood and textures pleasing to the eye. There is a harmony and Asian influence evident in his artistic sensibility. Texture and the tactile experience of Kent’s work are important to him, as he sees wood grain and patterns found in stone and nature as art in itself. Born in Sacramento into a family of engineers and artists, precision and function have been a part of Kent’s world forever. Attention to detail and enjoying nature seeded his early life, and he’s developed an intimate relationship with the natural world. Kent started sailing with his family at the age of three and at a young age lived on a sailboat with his uncle. He apprenticed at a boat-yard where he was taught to build and repair wooden yachts by master craftsmen, which ultimately led him to start his own business as a Shipwright specializing in wood boat repair, custom woodinteriors and furniture. Kent transitioned from his yacht repair business to being a Certified Marine Surveyor. Over the years he was hired to inspect many ‘famous’ yachts, one of which belonged to singer/songwriter David Crosby. Their mutual appreciation of wooden boats developed into a friendship and eventually a commission for Kent to create specialized wall mounts for his guitars which gave him easy access “when inspiration took hold”. Kent has made ten custom guitar holders for David designed with abalone inlay and jade pivot pins. 92


Recently retired from inspecting luxury yachts for the past 33 years, Kent works full-time creating beautiful fine wood furniture, custom boxes for wine, whiskey, cigar, jewelry boxes, and urns which he commissions on request. One of his most exquisite pieces is a replica of a Model D Steinway Piano in miniature that houses a 6L, 3L, 1.5L, and three 750 ML bottles of wine in an interior of patinaed silver leaf over Japan Red paint. It was originally commissioned to be a part of Auction Napa Valley and later juried in for display in the Sonoma “Artistry in Wood” Exhibition. Kent Parker’s life history is inherent in his unique talent integrating a variety of natural mediums into evocative works of art. Kent and his wife Tracy Lynne have made Napa their home for the past 18-years and cherish all the beauty the Napa Valley has to offer.

Kent’s mastery and attention to detail are apparent in his technique of “book matching”, a woodworking technique that allows a grain pattern to mirror itself. He started working with stone at a young age and is frequently inspired to integrate his hand-cut and polished stones into his woodwork. He finds patterns in nature that he reflects as ornamental elements into his fine woodwork creations as showcased in his piece entitled “Unity Box.” The title “Unity Box” mirrors his desire for people to embrace diversity in life and each other.

FOR MORE INFORMATION // 707-252-9383


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NVL health & wellness


Popular Napa Valley Pilates Studio Doubles and Then Triples in Size to Meet Demand of Pilates Lovers  BY EVE BUSHMAN


ilates Napa Valley’s motto has always been to “tone, sweat and transform” with their fitness-style Pilates classes. Now after 12-years, owner Heidi Strong invites people to visit their brand new expanded studio in north Napa. With 50 classes offered seven days a week, or in one-on-one private sessions, members can tailor their workouts to successfully gain lean muscle strength, more flexibility, better posture, improved balance, tone up and watch inches melt off, especially that pesky “core” area and backside. Desiree Del Dotto, Chief Operating Officer and Owner at Del Dotto Vineyards shared, “I’ve probably been going to Pilates Napa for three years after a friend first recommended the studio to me. I’m not a big workout person, but at 35, I wanted to be toned and healthier for the long term. I immediately started to feel better – I have scoliosis and can’t run or do exercises like that – luckily I fell in love with Pilates. They have great instructors, all very likable, so I’m not surprised that the business has done so well. Heidi herself is always happy and in great shape. It’s the best exercise that I’m glad I started on now so I can do it in my 60s and 70s like the others at the studio have.” With 3,000 square feet of bright open space, their Pilates studio is fully equipped,



“I was a graphic designer for 25 years, sitting at a desk for far too long. In 2006 I took my first Pilates class with a Reformer and fell in love. I literally quit my job two weeks later, signed up for a 450-hour teacher training certification program, to save my own back and shoulders. I opened my first studio in 2007 with 750 square feet, quickly outgrew that, and expanded to double our space. Now, my third studio is again double in size to accommodate more classes and separate private areas for individuals and duets,” Strong explained. “Nowadays, aging baby boomers are getting referred by their doctors and physical therapists to maintain their health and mitigate injuries.”

featuring both contemporary and classical Pilates machines including: Trapeze Table (aka the “Cadillac”), Ladder Barrel, Spine Corrector, “Electric” Chair, Ped-a-pull, nine Reformers with cardio jumpboards and plank bars, nine MVe Pilates Chairs and six Wall Towers. Students perform exercises under the guidance of certified instructors in small group classes, privates, or duets. Both classical and contemporary Pilates styles are available.

“ I’m thrilled to be a local business owner with a thriving business in my home town – with clients of all ages - making a difference in people’s lives.” Already in a sports or fitness program? That’s great. Pilates is designed as a stand-alone exercise regimen or to assist members to achieve more out of life and their chosen sport. FOR MORE INFORMATION

3138 Jefferson St., Napa, CA 94558 707-253-2214 //

Every day at OLE Health, we practice a new model of care that helps our Napa Valley community get – and stay – healthy. We do this through primary care, pediatrics, dental, nutrition, behavioral health, optometry, and more at OLE’s seven locations throughout wine country, and with the beautiful community garden at our new Napa Valley Vintners South Napa Campus. Thank you to our donors for having the vision and passion to make this garden grow to improve the nutrition options and health of our patients and our community, including:

Darioush & Shahpar Khaledi, Darioush Winery Sabrina & Freeland Tanner, Proscape Designs | Jim & Laura Regusci, Regusci Winery Napa’s 100 Men Who Give a Damn

Save the Date

A Celebration of OLE Health ¡SALUD! Napa Valley Saturday, March 28, 2020

For more information, please contact

707.603.7100 This project is supported by Kaiser Permanente Northern California Community WINTER Benefit Programs. 2019 95

NVL health & wellness

A COOL VIBE: The Roman

Spa Hot Springs Resort Calistoga



alistoga is having ‘a moment’ thanks to its plethora of natural hot springs. Once considered slightly passé and definitely old school, ‘taking the waters’ is cool again. Millennials are discovering what their parents and grandparents well knew – that the healthful benefits of Calistoga’s naturally occurring geothermal pools are tangible, and that one of the most relaxing spots in which to enjoy them is The Roman Hot Springs Resort. Family owned and operated since 1975, The Roman Hot Springs Resort is a Mediterranean-esque refuge within the larger oasis of Calistoga featuring three geothermal pools and an on-site spa, The Baths at Roman Spa at which some of the best local healers are dedicated to the health and wellness of guests. Located just a block off of Calistoga’s main street and within walking and biking distance of the town’s galleries, shops, restaurants and tasting rooms, the resort’s wellness offerings – as well as its bucolic grounds and well-appointed rooms – make it the home-away-from-home choice for the repeat visitors who value its varied amenities. 60 rooms in 14 varying types provide 96


choices for families, couples, and girlfriend getaways. A select collection of rooms feature luxurious bedding, cozy robes and slippers, and walk-in glass showers; two rooms feature dual-sided fireplaces and two-person Jacuzzi tubs. “Treatments at our boutique spa are a great way to round out your wine country trip, as it’s the perfect spot to rejuvenate and recharge amidst a wine and cuisine focused getaway,'' said spokesperson Elyse Quast. “We provide an authentic Calistoga mud bath experience with an incredible staff of healers dedicated and focused on the guest’s health and wellness. In a sense, it’s fun to get a little dirty too!” The spa offers facials, massage, and non-segregated mud and mineral baths, meaning couples can enjoy their mud bath, shower, and mineral bath together within one private room – a Calistoga anomaly. The large outdoor pool serves as a central

and convivial gathering spot and is kept at a refreshing 92° – 96°F. A large indoor pool is kept at 100°F, and a small, adultsonly outdoor pool runs at 104°F. Quast reveals her ideal day at The Baths at Roman Spa, “Upon arrival, I recommend a soak in the pools prior to a mud bath experience, and then a massage. It’s the perfect combo; mud baths naturally pull toxins and detoxify the body while relaxing muscles. There is simply no better form of relaxation. Then, head out for dinner at one of the great local restaurants, or grill your own meal in our barbecue area. After dinner, enjoy local wines and conversation around and in the pool, or within the beautiful gardens that are seasonally landscaped.”

“ It’s special here – it’s a quaint, charming oasis.” FOR MORE INFORMATION

Encore Dental at Napa is now offering our very own dental membership plans

3220 Beard Rd

Suite B

Napa, CA 94558

707-252-1950 WINTER 2019 97


(Locally Sourced)

CHARCUTERIE BOARD Shackford's Kitchen Store+ Culinary explains how to wow guests with a beautiful, colorful and tasty Charcuterie Board.




FIND THE RIGHT BOARD: Large cutting boards, marble slabs, slate boards or unconventional platters like a paella pan. Source locally at Shackford's Kitchen Store


SELECT YOUR MEATS: Choose a variety of cured meats and salami. Source locally at Fatted Calf


SELECT YOUR CHEESE: Choose a variety of soft and hard cheese with varying milk types and color such as Brie, Havarti, Gouda, Hot Pepper and Mozzarella. Source locally at Vella Cheese Co.


ADD SOME FLARE: Choose some cured olives or tempenades for addes flavor and color. Source locally at Olive Press Pantry


JAM IT UP: Add a few spreads, james and mustards with a variety of crackers and breadsticks. Source locally at Hurlet Farms Napa Valley


ADD SOME COLOR: Mix in a colorful variety of fresh and dried fruit such as grapes, berries and apricots.


GO NUTS: Add a variety of nuts... mix it up! Source locally at Napa Nuts


GO GREEN: For some finishing touches, add some fresh herb sprigs such as mint or rosemary.


THAT'S A WRAP: Most importantly, artfully arrange all items, have fun making... and eating it. Enjoy!

A Kitchen Store for Chefs and Cooks, Run by Chefs and Cooks



1350 Main Street Napa, CA 94559



to be missed! Allegria offers a great assortment of delicious desserts, including the And, we tiramisu. offer interesting small plates and salads, rotisserie meats and poultry and classic homemade seasonal entrees with a C CASA twist.

eggs benedict and fried chicken, or branch out and try our chicken and waffles or one of our signature burgers. A fun spot to meet up with friends or enjoy a meal with the whole family! 1122 First Street, Napa, CA 94559 1141 First Street Napa CA 94559 707-812-6853 | (707) 257-4992 |

1026 1st St, Napa, CA 94559 707-254-8006 | 610 1st St #B, Napa, CA 94559 / Oxbow Market

NVL dining guide


707-226-7700 |

special special dining dining

RL mediterranean grill


MEDITERRANEAN COMFORT CUISINE AMERICAN GRILL & BAR TARLA - True to our namesake, the Tarlacomfort Grill aims to and yieldisnourishing, creative, and CELADON offers award-winning food located in the Napa River DOWNTOWN JOES - global Anfrom American style grill united with quality andtheir freshness. Our culturally eats originating Turkeyon and Greece, lands heralded for Inn. Enjoy exciting an unforgettable dining experience our heated outdoor patio or in our menu is locally resourced then cooked with the flair that is true Napa Valley. We cuisine and a culture that takes pride in the relationship between mankind and the intimate indoor dining area. The seasonally influenced menu features flavors from the proudly feature salads, burgers, sandwiches, steaks, decadent land! We take our responsibility of ensuring the origins ofseafood, our ingredients seriously house made Mediterranean, Asia, and more the Americas. desserts, and modern pub grub. and pride ourselves on using local, seasonal and organic fare whenever possible.

MOMI a traditional Italian & organic food restaurant premium, locallyLA TOQUE’SCAChef KenisFrank’s landmark Napa Valley restaurant is the serving proud recipient SMALL WORLD - ingredients A world flavor awaits at Small Restaurant, where theand sourced, organic whenever possible inWorld support of localevolves purveyors of both a Michelin Star and The GrandofAward from Wine Spectator. The menu menu the vibrant cuisine of the Mediterranean andofthe Middle East. Falafel, like-minded businesses across Napa Valley. constantly to showfeatures off each season’s finest ingredients from a network local farmers Hummus, Babaus Ganoush, Schwarma, Pitafoods Sandwiches, Garden and purveyors who supply with some of the finest in the world. OurFresh wineSalads, and pairings areFresh-Made considered Baklava. by many to be the ultimate food and wine experience.

500 Street, Suite G, Napa, CA 94559 1480Main 1st St, Napa, CASt, 94559 902 Napa, CA 94559 707-254-9690 |Main 707-255-5599 | 707-258-2337 |

Street (Downtown Napa, CA 94559 The Westin 928 Verasa Napa, 1314 McKinstry St,Napa), Napa, CA 94559 1141Coombs First Street Napa CA 94559 707-224-7743 707-257-5157 | (707) 257-4992| |


琀愀瘀攀爀渀 ☀

JAPENESE CUISINE AMERICAN CUISINE EIKO’S - Eiko’s delivers imaginative twists on traditional Japanese cuisine. Our vision NAPKINS - An American restaurant withJapanese an exciting sceneincluding for locals and travelfor the menu combines modern andcuisine authentic traditional cuisine ers who happen fish upon them.Weekend brunch (11 amfrom to 3our pm)local and markets one of the best seasonal, fresh sustainable and ingredients delivered daily happy hours in Napa (food and drink fromour 3 tochefs 7 pm). Weekend and purveyors. In addition to traditional raw fish specials preparation, creates a nights the bar turns electric entertainment livetaste performances and dancing to DJs selection ofarea innovative dishes with inspired by our localincluding culture and profiles featuring Napa as influence and inspiration. 1001 2nd St, Napa, CA 94559 1385 Napa Town Center, Napa, CA 94559 707-927-5333 | 707-501-4444 |


ITALIAN AMERICAN GRILL & BAR BAR + GRILL DOWNTOWN JOES style grillexperience united withthrough quality food, and freshness. Our IL POSTO TRATTORIA - We offer- An theAmerican traditional italian TAVERN &the PIZZERIA isNapa acooked cozy, brick-walled with table & barWe seating menu is locallyinresourced then withOur themenu flairgastropub that is true Napa Valley. served in a COOK casual setting beautiful Valley. offers a variety slecfor seasonal American and Italian dishes and neapolitan-inspired pizza .house Perfectmade for proudlysalads, featurepizza’s salads,along burgers, steaks, decadent tion of antipasta’s, withsandwiches, freshly madeseafood, pasta dishes. friends and families can stoppub in after work and enjoy a true tavern atmosphere. desserts, and more modern grub. 4211 Solano Ave, Napa, CA 94559 707-251-8600 | Main 1304 St,Napa, St Helena, CA 94574 902 Main St, CA 94559 707-963-8082 707-258-2337 ||




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CA' MOMIisOSTERIA provides Napa Valley with an obsessively authentic Italian CA MOMI a traditional Italianthe & organic food restaurant serving premium, locallyexperience. Theyingredients serve up locally-sourced organic ingredients featured in their sourced, organic whenever possible in support of local purveyors and historic Italian recipes, certified pizzaValley. Napoletana and garden to glass cocktails, all like-minded businesses across Napa in the heart of downtown Napa. Ca’ Momi Osteria also offers tastings of Ca’ Momi Napa Valley and Italian wines plus late night live music each weekend.

NAPKINS - An American restaurant withatan exciting scene for locals and travelaapproach casual dining destination aimed providing localsorder with an experiC CASA - WeHOP offerCREEK a fresh tocuisine tacos and much more. Fresh, made-toers who happen upon them.Weekend brunch (11 am to 3 pm) and of the best ence built around a warm welcoming atmosphere, they can enjoy aone locally sourced white corn tortillas topped with ingredients like seasoned buffalo, rotisserie lamb, happy hours Napaunique (food and specials from 3 toand 7Valley pm). Weekend nights hours the bar menu, coupled with craft beers, spirits and aioli Napa wines. Happier grilled prawns, fresh crab,inmicro greens, goatdrink cheese, chipotle Serrano salsa. area turns electric with entertainment including livelarge performances and dancing Monday-Friday 2pm-6pm. Family and rotisserie dog friendly, parties welcome inside to or DJs on And, we offer interesting small plates and salads, meats and poultry and our relaxing side patio. Cheers! seasonal entrees with a creek C CASA twist.

1141 First Street Street,Napa Napa,CA CA94559 94559 | 707-224-6664 | 1141 First (707) 257-4992 |

1001Browns 2nd St, Napa, 3253 Valley CA Rd,94559 Napa, CA 94558 | 707-257-7708 | 707-927-5333 | 610 1st St #B, Napa, CA 94559 / Oxbow Market 707-226-7700 |



to be missed! Allegria offers a great assortment of delicious desserts, including the eggs benedict and fried chicken, or branch out and try our chicken and waffles or one classic homemade tiramisu. of our signature burgers. A fun spot to meet up with friends or enjoy a meal with the whole family! St, Napa, CA 94559 1122 First Street, Napa, CA Napa 94559 Valley Wine List Award winners are recognized1026 for1st their outstanding selections of Napa Valley wines. 707-254-8006 | 707-812-6853 |

special special dining dining

special special dining dining



mediterranean grill

TRADITIONAL ITALIAN WINE COUNTRY EL FRESCO TRADITIONAL ITALIAN AMERICAN STEAKHOUSE CA MOMI is a traditional Italian & organic food restaurant serving premium, locallysourced, organic ingredients whenever possible in support of local purveyors and - When you want a delicious Prime ribrecipient dinner, steak or fresh CA MOMI a traditional Italian & organic food restaurant serving premium, locallyLA TOQUE’STRANCAS Chef KenisSTEAKHOUSE Frank’s landmark Napa Valley restaurant is the proud like-minded businesses Napa Valley. seafood, the place to goacross isAward thewhenever Trancas Steakhouse. Many called their bar the sourced, organic ingredients possible in support of local purveyors and of both a Michelin Star and The Grand from Wine Spectator. Thehave menu evolves

MEDITERRANEAN TARLA - True to our namesake, the Tarla Grill aims to yield nourishing, creative, and culturally exciting eats originating from Turkey and Greece, lands heralded for their cuisine and a culture that takes pride in the relationship between mankind and the land! We take our responsibility of ensuring the origins of our ingredients seriously and pride ourselves on using local, seasonal and organic fare whenever possible.

of the west. The across barstools areValley. occupied locals every night of the week. The like-minded businesses Napa constantly toCheers show off each season’s finest ingredients from abynetwork of local farmers walls aresupply covered photosofof happy (you know who you are somebody and purveyors who us with some the finestcustomers foods in the world. Our wine you make the wall.) Theyultimate do havefood pictures of celebrities including owners pairings are when considered by many to be the and wine experience. 1141 Napa CA 94559 NormFirst andStreet Christy Sawicki. (707) 257-4992 | The Westin Verasa Napa, 1314 McKinstry St, Napa, CA 94559 1141 First Street Napa CA 94559 707-257-5157 | Trancas (707) 257-4992 | 999 Street, Napa, CA 94558 707-258-9990 |

1480 1st St, Napa, CA 94559 707-255-5599 |

MEXICAN / TEX-MEX JAPENESE CUISINE C CASA - We offer a fresh approach to tacos and much more. Fresh, made-to- order EIKO’S - Eiko’s delivers imaginative twists on traditional Japanese cuisine. Our vision white corn tortillas topped with ingredients like seasoned buffalo, rotisserie lamb, for the menu combines modern and authentic traditional Japanese cuisine including grilled prawns, fresh crab, micro greens, goat cheese, chipotle aioli and Serrano salsa. seasonal, fresh sustainable fish and ingredients delivered daily from our local markets And, we offer interesting small plates and salads, rotisserie meats and poultry and and purveyors. Inwith addition to traditional seasonal entrees a C CASA twist. raw fish preparation, our chefs creates a selection of innovative dishes inspired by our local culture and taste profiles featuring Napa as influence and inspiration. 610 1st St #B, Napa, CA 94559 / Oxbow Market 1385 Napa Town Center, Napa, CA 94559 | 707-226-7700 707-501-4444 |

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al dining ial dining section section

AMERICAN GRILL & BAR AMERICAN CUISINE ITALIAN AMERICAN GRILL & BAR DOWNTOWN JOES - An American style grill united with quality and freshness. Our NAPA is GENERAL STORE -then Refreshing locals andflair visitors since 2002. Our riverside menu locally resourced cooked with the that is true Napa Valley. WeOurpatio DOWNTOWN JOES - An style grill united withthrough quality and freshness. IL POSTO TRATTORIA - We offer theAmerican traditional italian experience food, is an ideal spot for enjoying a meal with friends (including four-legged friends) and proudly feature salads, burgers, sandwiches, seafood, steaks, decadent houseWe made menu is locally resourced then cooked with the flair that is true Napa Valley. served in a casual setting in the beautiful Napa Valley. Our menu offers a variety slecfamily. Join for breakfast or lunch week - and our award-winning weekdesserts, andusmore modern pub grub.during the proudly feature salads, burgers, sandwiches, seafood, steaks, decadent house made tion of antipasta’s, salads, pizza’s along with freshly made pasta dishes. end brunch. Come for the food, stay for the great wines and artisan gifts! We support desserts, more modern pub grub. local foodand purveyors and locally source our ingredients. 4211 Solano902 Ave, Napa, CA 94559 Main St, Napa, CA 94559 707-251-8600 | 707-258-2337 | Napa, 540 CA 94559 902 Main Street St, Napa, CA 94559

Reserve online| at or by calling 707-259-0762 707-258-2337







MEDITERRANEAN AMERICAN EATERY SMALL WORLD - A world of flavor awaits at Small World Restaurant, where thebreakTHE GRILL AT SILVERADO, is a one-of-a-kind Napa Valley restaurant, serving menu features the and vibrant of the Mediterranean and theWine Middle East. Falafel, fast, lunch, dinner bar cuisine appetizers. The restaurant features Country Cuisine, Hummus, Baba Ganoush, Schwarma, Pita Sandwiches, Garden Salads,Napa, and the emphasizing fresh and sustainable products. Just minutes fromFresh downtown Fresh-Made Baklava. Grill overlooks one of the most beautiful golf courses on earth and offers a respite from the daily routine for everyone who visits. 928 Coombs Street (Downtown Napa), Napa, CA 94559 1600 Atlas Peak|Rd, Napa, CA 94558 | 707-257-5400 | 707-224-7743

AMERICAN CUISINE AMERICAN CUISINE NAPKINS - An American cuisine restaurant with an exciting scene for locals and travelers who happen upon them.Weekend brunch (11an amexciting to 3 pm) andfor onelocals of theand best NAPKINS - An American cuisine restaurant with scene travelhappy hours in Napa and drink specials 3 to nights the bar ers who happen upon(food them.Weekend brunch from (11 am to73pm). pm) Weekend and one of the best area turns electric with entertainment including live performances and dancing to happy hours in Napa (food and drink specials from 3 to 7 pm). Weekend nights the DJs bar

area turns electric with entertainment including live performances and dancing to DJs

1001 2nd St, Napa, CA 94559 707-927-5333 | 1001 2nd St, Napa, CA 94559

707-927-5333 |

FALL 2019








Showcase your downtown business here. Contact Doris Hobbs to reserve space in the next issue: 209-207-4876, 2 12






1 1 4 1 F I R S T S T R E E T | D O W N T O W N N A PA 707.224.6664 | WWW.CAMOMI.COM

obsessively authentic italian




Villa Iris

Napa's Treasure House

• necklaces

• b r a c e l e t s • rings

Noonish-4pm or by appointment


618 Third Street, Napa | 707-799-3414





Double Pot or Pot Column Distillations Mashing & Fermentation • Bottling & Labeling Consulting & Recipe Development






Wine Tasting & Lifestyle Boutique.

Wine Bar & Lounge.




Facial Treatment. Microdermabrasion. Hydrafacial ® . Microcurrent.

Epicurean Delights. Charcuterie. Cheese. Caviar. Espresso.

Fashion. Vintage Bags & Accessories. Fragrance. Beauty. | 707.934.8237 106


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