St. Clair Brown Winery & Brewery

Napa Valley duo created an urban winery, then added beer.

Winemaker Elaine St. Clair and business partner Laina Brown started their operation as an “urban winery.” True enough: St. Clair Brown is steps north of Downtown Napa in a light-industrial area in view of car-parts and auto-body shops. But the vibe here is more rustic than this description implies. Tastings take place in a culinary garden with vegetables, herbs, and dozens of espalier-trellised fruit trees.

Rosé of Syrah is a summertime favorite – while it lasts.

Small-Lot Wines, Tasty Small Bites

St. Clair’s small-lot wines – only about 200 cases of each are produced – include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, and Muscat whites. The winery makes Rosé of Syrah, a Rhône-style red blend, and a Cabernet-Merlot-Syrah blend, along with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, and Zinfandel. 

At tastings the wines can be ordered individually by the bottle or sampled in a flight of four. All pair well with the tasty small plates, among them hummus, a cheese board, and the signature almonds roasted with Meyer lemon oil and  seasoned with organic lemon zest and herbs from the garden.

Three of the dozen-plus beers St. Clair Brown makes are always on tap.

Enter St. Clair Brown Beer

In 2017, St. Clair Brown opened a microbrewery. Turns out that for her fermentation-science degree at U.C. Davis, Elaine St. Clair focused on brewing as well as winemaking. Three of her naturally carbonated beers, which are sold in sparkling-wine bottles, are always on tap at the greenhouse for tasting by the flight, glass, or bottle.

Tip

St. Clair Brown is open for tastings from Thursday through Sunday (until 8 pm on Friday and Saturday).

Itinerary

St. Clair Brown appears in Downtown Napa in a Day.

Info

816 Vallejo St., Napa 94559

Why go:  easy-going feel; straightforward yet complex wines; tasty small bites.

Rosé jelly and roasted pistachios accompanied cheese plate.

More About Napa Valley

Napa Valley Basics

Itineraries

3 Historic Napa Valley Wineries Day Trip
3 St. Helena Wineries with a Personal Touch
48 Perfect Hours in Calistoga

What to Do

10 Foolproof Napa Valley Cabernet Tasting Experiences

This story originally appeared online in 2017; it was fact-checked and updated in mid-2021.

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