HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine Experiences

Construction completed on Napa Valley’s newest art and wine destination, built to LEED Gold-Certified Specifications

HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine ExperiencesThe new St. Helena Visitor Center from HALL Wines goes above and beyond to offer one-of-a-kind Napa Valley wine experiences. Featuring floor-to-ceiling glass windows that provide a sense of place in the valley, the Visitor Center will offer world-class wines, entertaining education, one-of-a-kind tours and tastings, a culinary center, state-of-the-art production facilities and incredible art throughout the property that has been both purchased and commissioned exclusively for HALL Wines. The Visitor Center will be open for private tours on the hour. The new facility is also available now for private wine and food events, featuring several new indoor/outdoor experiences accommodating groups of all sizes and limitless customization options.

“The Visitor Center at HALL St. Helena has been a labor of love for many years now and it is such a dream come true for Craig and I to see it completed,” says Founder and Vintner Kathryn Walt Hall. “The Center brings together everything that HALL Wines celebrates – amazing wine, inspiring art, a commitment to the environment and a focus on state-of-the-art winemaking. We are so excited to share our passion with the Napa community and invite visitors to the region to see it firsthand.”

HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine ExperiencesNEW EXPERIENCES
The “HALL St. Helena Bergfeld Experience” begins with a glass of the 2012 HALL Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc before visiting the historic 1885 Bergfeld Winery for a barrel tasting and immersion in the winery’s history. Guests will then tour the art installations on the grounds and travel through the new gravity-flow winemaking facilities, allowing a behind-the-scenes view of winemaking. The experience will conclude with a hosted wine tasting and cheese pairing in the private salons which overlook the beautiful campus. Tours will be offered on the hour for $40 person, and will include a tasting of 4-5 wines. Reservations are highly recommended.

The “Demystifying Wine & Food Experience” is meant to expand the normal winery tour with a guided wine and food pairing experience lead by wine educator and house chef, Todd Kerlin. Guests will experience an interactive discussion of the fundamentals or creating and enjoying wine and food pairings. Demystifying Wine & Food is offered Fridays at 2pm and is $60 per person. The experience is approximately 90 minutes long. Reservations are required.

“Wine Tasting 101” offers guests a fund and educational program designed for the novice on the fundamentals of wine. Learn how to read wine labels, why we swirl wine, how to smell, taste and describe wine. The experience is offered daily at 10am and is $25 per person. The experience is approximately 45 minutes long. Reservations are highly recommended.

HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine Experiences

Please see below, or visit www.hallwines.com/hall-media for more information specific to Architecture, HALL’s new Food & Wine Culinary Center, Interior Design, Modern Art and HALL’s Historic “Bergfeld” Winery.

St. Helena-based designer, Jarrod Denton of Signum Architecture, known for his focus on sustainable architecture, spearheaded the design of the Visitor Center with Architect Alison Maloney. The team was inspired by the winery’s location on the flat valley floor and wanted to create a space that felt like it was stretching between the Howell Mountains to the East and the Mayacamus Mountains to the West. The stone and steel structure is encased in a transparent glass curtain from floor to ceiling, allowing visitors to truly take in the beauty of the landscape. The only manufactured element – 18-foot tall glazing that ribbons around the new building keeps the design clean and minimal, allowing it to dissolve into the surrounding region.

“In designing the Visitor Center at HALL St. Helena, we were inspired to create a building that invokes sensory experience. The rich history of the site, the distinguished wines, and the beauty of the rural setting drive architectural response,” said Denton. “Nature takes center stage and as a winery guest, you are connected with the land. Our goal with this building is to provoke thought and create a lasting, personal experience. Through your filter, the experience transforms into something else, something that speaks, only to you — evoking feelings or thought, uniquely yours.”

Upon entering the building, guests are brought into a quieter, darker space, close to the winemaking experience, then led upstairs to the tasting room and released back out toward views and the openness of the valley. The main tasting room bar is off-set by three private tasting rooms, each able to accommodate 14 guests. Outside on the 2nd floor terrace, guests are invited to enjoy a glass of wine around a linear concrete fireplace. Open views of the production facility allow guests to be immersed in the process of winemaking. “Seeing the grapes harvested in the vineyard beyond, the elevators bringing the fruit to the mezzanine, and the fermentors filled by gravity on a summer afternoon, all from a commanding view of a tasting room is unique. If you add the aromatic smell of a new harvest with a transformative architectural space while sharing with friends or family you have a memorable experience that should last a lifetime,” said Denton.

HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine Experiences

The Visitor Center also includes an exposition-style culinary center that can host 60 guests at family-style tables set perpendicular to an open kitchen. Continuing on the Halls’ commitment to the environment, the new building has been built to LEED Gold Certified standards surrounded vineyards with CCOF Organic certification. Innovative winemaking facilities include optical-sorting technology that selects only the finest fruit for fermentation. The St. Helena location is also home to one of Napa’s only electric vehicle charging stations.

Nicole Hollis, a San Francisco interior designer, worked closely with Signum Architecture to complement the building and create a space that was inspired by the Halls’ deep appreciation for art and design. Taking cues from 21st century art installations such as Richard Serra’s steel sculptures, the Visitor Center interiors are awash in raw and organic materials such as stone, plaster, polished steel, cast concrete and raw plywood – providing a neutral canvas for the extensive art collection. “The Halls recognize the importance of place and of participating in local traditions; they also value art,” Hollis says. “Understanding the winery as a balance between history and innovation, one that honors the past while embracing the future, I was able to explore the local lexicon with creative freedom. I tried to push the traditional design envelope for a Napa winery; an all-red bathroom and a custom 43-foot-long manmade ‘log table’ are two exciting examples of this.”

HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine Experiences

The centerpiece of the main tasting room features a 23-foot mirror-polish steel bar – an original design from Hollis that reflects the surrounding landscape, shining underneath a stunning chandelier commissioned from light-artist Spencer Finch. The downstairs bathrooms are cocooned in red from ceilings to sinks, providing an unexpected, playful take on HALL Wines’ signature color. In the private tasting rooms, the mood turns dramatic with dark plaster and massive silver cone lights with red interiors designed by Ingo Mauer.

In addition to the new Visitor Center, the Halls have restored the two-story 1885 Bergfeld Winery. The building brings a sense of awe and heritage to the site as it is juxtaposed against the glass vignette and modern design of the Visitor Center. The winery is constructed of solid stone on the first floor and a wood frame on the second and was once able to produce 27,000 gallons of wine. Eventually shut down during Prohibition, the winery reopened in the 1930s as the Napa Valley Cooperative Winery and served as a fermentation facility for grapes from all over the valley. It was acquired by the Halls in 2003, and is now a stunning centerpiece and venue of the new winery.

HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine Experiences

Other installations include a life-size albino camel contemplating his size in relation to the eye of a giant needle from American conceptual artist, John Baldessari; giant psychedelic aluminum pinwheels spin over the fermentation tanks from sculptor Jim Drain. Within the buildings, one of the many installations includes a “shower” of red glass and iron raindrops, designed by Graham Caldwell as well a large three-dimensions display of concentric rectangles crafted with a series of vibrantly colored cards by artist Peter Wegner, and inspired by the color studies of Joseph Albers.MODERN ART
“Our vision is to craft artisan wines and showcase them alongside masterful art and architecture,” Kathryn says. “Craig is an avid art collector, so our wineries are really a union of both our passions.” The art at the new Visitor Center features modern installations and a tribute to some of the most creative minds of the 21st Century. In September 2013, famed “Stickworks” artist Patrick Dougherty created his latest installation at HALL St. Helena with the help of the local community. Using local saplings gathered from maintained or salvage areas and land slated for development, Dougherty shaped his larger than life sculpture, “Deck the Halls” – a piece that will call HALL Wines home for the next five years.

In the Bergfeld Winery, Italian glasswork artist Tristano di Robilant has created an elongated chandelier of hand-blown glass pendants in warming shades of orange, green and yellows, hanging above a custom “King’s Table” designed by artist John Houshmand with Nicole Hollis. The 43’ table, located in the Founders Cellar, is made from a variety of both natural and man-made materials and is designed to replicate the look of one of Northern California’s famed Redwood trees, cut in half lengthwise. The final piece marries a manmade log to blackened steel fin legs and glass side panels, “floating” the length of the room. Guests can book private tastings and events at the table. Upstairs in the Petersons Loft, Bay Area artist Russell Crotty created a series of large fiberglass spheres, spanning 18-48” in diameter, representing various Napa landscapes of the Napa Valley to hang above the main room of the restored historic winery. Additional art installations will be added in the months to come

HALL Wines’ New St. Helena Visitor Center Opens for Tours & Unique Wine Experiences

HALL Wines is a family-owned, critically acclaimed premier Napa Valley vineyard and winery with five estate vineyards of classic Bordeaux varietals. As a specialist in Cabernet Sauvignon, each vintage the winemaking staff crafts 15 distinct Cabernet blends which demonstrate the unique characteristics and diversity of the Napa Valley. Their highly rated wines have included the 2008 ‘Kathryn Hall’ Cabernet Sauvignon selected as Wine Spectator’s #2 wine in the world in 2011, the 2010 ‘Exzellenz’ which received 100 points from Robert Parker in 2013, and the 2006 ‘Exzellenz’ selected as Wine Enthusiast’s #1 wine in the world in 2009. HALL’s Napa Valley estate vineyards are Certified Organic and employ cutting-edge vineyard technology to yield the highest quality grapes. In addition, the HALL St. Helena winemaking facility was the first LEED® Gold Certified Winery in the State of California, making HALL Wines a pioneer in the use of green buildings in the wine industry. The site maintains one acre of solar panels on its roof and uses 100% recycled water throughout its processes. Each of HALL’s spectacular winemaking facilities, HALL St. Helena and HALL Rutherford, showcases installations from the Hall family’s extensive modern art collection. Both wineries are open daily to visitors for personal tours and tastings. For more information, please visit www.hallwines.com