Somerston Winery

A collection of premium wine from St. Helena.

About Somerston Winery

The Somerston property is the foundation of everything we do. The property is 1628 acres of natural beauty, with over 200 acres of sustainably farmed vineyards, winery, and a developing ranch and farm Our two valleys are split by the highest point on Sage Canyon Road, topping out at almost 2800 feet in elevation, the valley floors rest at 800 feet above sea level. Somerston is 8 miles east of Rutherford east of the Chiles Valley appellation in Napa Valley. Its diverse soils, microclimates, and exposures are perfect for growing world-class grapes. This remarkable property has several spring fed lakes, natural soda springs, and several acres dedicated to farming of fruit trees, vegetables, herbs, and gardens.

Located in our eastern valley, the winery is a renovated 12,000 square foot barn. The facility is designed to be functional, practical, and energy efficient. In the summer of 2010 the completion of our new winemaking facility will feature many high-tech attributes. This remodeled facility will be sustainably operated by employing new proven technologies like CO2 heat pumps, non-glycol based refrigerants, elimination of a boiler for hot water, the first process waste anaerobic bio-filter in Napa County, that delivers clean, pH adjusted processed waster with over 90% BOD (biological oxygen demand) removed, and solar power. Our carbon neutral cooling/ heating and hot water system will be amongst the first of its kind in use at a winery in the United States.



Our Vineyard has over 200 acres planted on elevations of 850 to 2400 feet above sea level. Its cool nights, low morning temperatures, late morning fog and warm afternoon temperatures give our vineyards a slow and even ripening. The vineyard is divided into 87 individual blocks that represent the various soils (alluvial fans, silty clay and fractured shale, and Akin). For years, the fruit from Somerston has been purchased by some of Napa Valleys most renowned winemakers including David Ramey, Heidi Barrett, and David Phinny, plus a handful of well-respected wineries Balcom Family Cellars, Biale, Caymus, Duckhorn, Orin Swift, Pahlmeyer, and Viader.


Our farm is constantly undergoing development and will be foundation of our culinary experience at Somerston.

SheepOn the property you will find over 1500 natural, grass-fed, hormone-free Dorper Sheep. Our sheep graze the entire property and are rotated into new areas ahead of maturing invasive plants and weeds. This ensures a quality environment for the sheep and the preservation of our properties natural floral and fauna. They are used for both fire protection and restoration of the land. The lambs are completely pasture-raised; they are free ranging and are never confined. Grazing them in various locations on the ranch also contributes to their delicate, tender and savory flavors. As part of our Farm to Table Concept, we harvest our lamb and sell it locally to our customers.

GardensWe have several areas dedicated to gardens; including fruit trees, flowering beds, vegetable gardens, bee hives, and olive trees. We will harvest our natural bounty and share it at both of our tasting rooms and at our grocery in Yountville

Bees - HoneyLike other elements of the farm, bees play an integral role in sustaining the flowering plant on the property and produce a savory product. Bees are at the heart of the plant cycle and especially important to the sustainability of our property.

Olive OilGraced with rich soils and a temperate climate, our trees have proven ideal for a blend of Italian and Spanish olives. Today, we have 39 olive trees with plans to expand to well over 50; some are over 30 years old. Our trees produce rich and fragrant extra virgin olive oils.

The efforts of our garden team are three-fold: production, preservation and education. The natural aim of a garden is to deliver quality product to our customers and neighbors.


Owner & Winemaker: F. Allan Chapman

The strength of Somerston is the people that are working hard to deliver our product to you. From the founders to the newest staff members, we believe in hard work, perseverance, and a little luck can make great things happen. We are committed to developing a vineyard and winery that is driven by inspiration, quality, sustainability, and the belief in our own success.

F. Allan ChapmanProprietorIn 2004, Allan Chapman was lured to the Somerston property by its pure beauty and unspoiled landscape. He brings his wealth of knowledge and insight to Somerston as its CEO and Proprietor providing long-term vision and inspiration to the project.


Winemaker: Craig Becker

Craig Becker is a founding member of Somerston. He is a seasoned winemaker and has worked with a wide range of varieties planted at some of California’s top hillside vineyards. Driven by his strong interest in plant and soil science Craig attended the University of California at Davis studying plant physiology, hydrologic science, enology, and viticulture. It is Craig’s artisan approach to winemaking and his extensive knowledge in viticulture that enables him to create superb wines from a wide range of varieties and sites. As General Manager of Somerston, Craig oversees all aspects of the business from viticulture, winemaking, sales and marketing, finance and business development.


Press & Award


Latest ReviewsRobert Parker's / Wine Advocate

December 2010 - Issue #192


2007 Priest Ranch Petite Sirah Somerston Vineyards

RATING: 95 points

PRODUCER:Priest Ranch 

FROM:Napa Valley Napa, North Coast, California, USA

VARIETY:Petite Sirah



Dec 2010

The monster in the group is the 2007 Petite Sirah Somerston Vineyard. Inky/purple, with notes of graphite, licorice, incense, blueberry and spring flowers, this wine is remarkably civilized for Petite Sirah, with sweet tannin, lots of fruit, a full-bodied mouthfeel, but no hard edges. Given the anti-oxidative characteristics of this varietal, this wine will no doubt age for 20 or more years, but it can be drunk now.


2007 Priest Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon Somerston Vineyards

RATING: 94 points

PRODUCER:Priest Ranch 

FROM:Napa Valley Napa, North Coast, California, USA

VARIETY:Cabernet Sauvignon

DRINK:2010 - 2025


Dec 2010

The 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Somerston Vineyards has a saturated ruby/plum/purple color and a big, sweet kiss of spring flowers intermixed with black cherry, black currant, and spice. Floral notes continue in the mouth, with beautiful texture, purity, full body, and a seamless integration of tannin, acidity, wood and alcohol. This fragrant beauty combines both elegance and power into a classic Cabernet Sauvignon with a perfumed personality. Drink it over the next 10-15 years.


2009 Priest Ranch Sauvignon Blanc Somerston Vineyards

RATING: 91 points

PRODUCER:Priest Ranch

FROM:Napa Valley Napa, North Coast, California, USA

VARIETY:Sauvignon Blanc



Dec 2010

A real head-turner, the 2009 Sauvignon Blanc is light straw-colored with oodles of melon and crushed rock in its perfumed set of aromatics. The elegant, fresh, medium-bodied wine hits the palate with authority. With loads of fruit and a striking minerality, it is an interesting and distinctive Sauvignon Blanc made in a Bordeaux style.




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