We recently made a trip up-valley to visit a property that was once home to an outlet mall just north of the town of St. Helena. Today, the space is in the final stages of a complete transformation that will ultimately see it reopen as a destination wine and food “village.”
Cairdean Estate is the brainchild of husband and wife Edwin and Stacia Williams. The couple recently opened a gorgeous new tasting room and sleek restaurant, The Farmer & The Fox, on the property. In addition to the winery, which reportedly has a permit to produce 50,000 gallons annually, the space will also include a mercantile shop (Rosgal), a deli and bakery (Butterscots) and plenty of outdoor space to kick back and relax.
We visited the tasting room, which unlike most in the valley is open daily until 8pm. Standout wines included the Haley Margaret 2012 Napa Valley White Wine, which is a unique blend of 43% Roussanne, 43% Pinot Gris, 14% Viogner. Perfect on a warm Summer evening. The Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2009 also showed quite well, with hints of cherry and pepper on the long, layered finish.
While still very much under construction, a visit to Cairdean Estate makes it is easy to see the potential. Once complete, we expect it to be popular with locals and visitors due to its unique ability to bring together food and wine in a relaxed setting. Stay tuned for our thoughts on The Farmer & The Fox, which is overseen by Chef Joseph Humphrey.