Tom Burgess of Burgess Cellars arrived in the Napa Valley in 1972, when Napa was only beginning to bud in the wine industry. Tom saw great potential and beauty in the land and knew this was the place to live his dream and open a family winery. He bought a small mountainside winery located on the western side of Howell Mountain; the winery itself was originally established in the 1870’s. This little winery developed into Burgess Cellars. Since 1972, Tom and his family have worked very hard to create the best estate grown grapes and produce unique handcrafted wines that deliciously compliment food.
All the vineyards in Napa have evolved into growing and creating very stylistic wines due to each vineyard’s location and climates. What makes Burgess wines so reputable is the fact that they are always perfect harmony with the terroir, aiming to make a “total impression” with their consideration on what grape varietals get planted in what soil and climate.
The Burgess Cabernet Sauvignon is produced from grapes grown in Burgess’ Howell Mountain, Napa Valley Estate vineyards. Originally planted in the 1880s, these vineyards have been replanted several times since, most recently in 1978. The soil here contains compressed volcanic ash called “tuff.” The slope, western exposure, and relative scarcity of ground water stress the vines, producing a smaller berry packed with intense flavor, color and aroma. All of the grapes are hand selected and harvested. Burgess Cellars practice sustainable agriculture and currently are in the process of gaining organic certification.
Located on the western side of Howell Mountain, the tasting room offers one of the best views of the Napa Valley. The staff is very helpful and knowledgeable, happy to educate guests about the history of the vineyard and the winery. From the open-air, mountainside porch you can see all the way from Saint Helena to Calistoga and to the west the valley is lined by the Mayacamas Mountains. The barrel room serves as the ideal place to taste their wines, it being the very picture of rustic ambiance. Dogs are welcome as well.