OAKVILLE, Calif. (June 25, 2019) – 1881 Napa, the country’s only wine history museum, was officially opened during an event last night that included remarks from state Sen. Bill Dodd, President and CEO of Napa Valley Vintners Linda Reiff, President and CEO of Visit Napa Valley Linsey Gallagher, wine expert and best-selling author of The Wine Bible Karen MacNeil and 1881 Napa Proprietor Jean-Charles Boisset.
“Today we are really cutting the ribbon on something so important… to always emphasize on speaking on history,” said Boisset. “America is really the reflection of the people of the past that really crafted this valley and created the valley… This is your 101 class on the history of California, the pioneers of Napa Valley, the terroir — you can taste history here!”
The crowd of some 250 people, including many vintners from around Napa Valley, converged at 1881 Napa, housed in one of the oldest Victorian homes in the valley and located adjacent to Oakville Grocery, California’s oldest continually operating grocery store, to celebrate the milestone opening. They toured the museum and enjoyed food as well as wines from 1881 Napa as well as other labels from Boisset Collection, which acquired the Oakville site earlier this year.
“Thank you for creating this wonderful asset that takes a look at our history and allows us to convert that into the future and have visitors and locals alike have such a positive connection with what makes the Napa Valley so unique and special and leaves them wanting to come back again and again to experience the wonderful hospitality that this valley does better than anywhere in the world,” said Gallagher.
1881 Napa features an extensive collection of historic wine relics from Europe and the United States, antique decanters, original artifacts from the Early California Wine Trade Archive and background on all of the 16 sub-appellations of Napa Valley and the founders and pioneers of those areas. In addition to the museum, which is open for complimentary visitation, visitors to 1881 Napa can taste wines from throughout Napa Valley via rotating comparative tastings developed by MacNeil with themes such as “Majestic Mountains Versus Plush Valley” and “Is it Cool to be Hot or Hot to be Cool?” as well as an option to “Embark on a Journey Throughout the Valley” by tasting Cabernet Sauvignons from 12 different sub-appellations. Tastings are held on the bottom floor surrounded by alcoves with soil samples from the various regions, along with 1881 Napa wines and descriptions of the regions written by MacNeil.
Guests can also enjoy wines from a blend of Napa Valley grapes, including a sparkling wine, Sauvignon Blanc, rosé, Chardonnay, red blend, Merlot and a Cabernet Sauvignon — all wines crafted exclusively for 1881 Napa by Winemaker Thane Knutson to reflect the diversity of Napa Valley.
“As everyone knows, Napa Valley is well known for our fantastic wines around the world but what sets this region apart from any other, hands down, is the amazing spirit of cooperation and collaboration and camaraderie amongst our wineries,” said Reiff. “We hope that everyone here thinks of this place as not just a place to bring someone visiting you from afar but also as a place for the community to come and have that sense of community and spirit.”
1881 Napa is located at 7856 St. Helena Highway in Oakville and is open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Reservations are recommended and can be made here.
About Boisset Collection
Boisset is a family-owned collection of historic and unique wineries and lifestyle destinations led by Jean-Charles Boisset and bound together by a common vision: authentic, terroir-driven wines in harmony with their history, their future and the land and people essential to their existence. With more than 25 historical and prestigious still and sparkling wineries in the world’s preeminent terroirs, including Burgundy, Beaujolais, Jura, the Rhône Valley, the south of France and California’s Russian River Valley and the Napa Valley. Its California wineries include DeLoach Vineyards, Raymond Vineyards, Buena Vista Winery and JCB by Jean-Charles Boisset; its French properties feature Domaine de la Vougeraie, Jean-Claude Boisset, Bouchard Aîné et Fils, J. Moreau et Fils, Louis Bouillot, Domaines Henri Maire, Fortant and Bonpas. Each house retains its unique history, identity and style, and all are united in the pursuit of fine wines expressive of their terroir. Wine is at the center of Boisset’s mission, and is complemented by spirits, beer, cider, gourmet foods and luxury goods, both of its own design and from partnerships with historic companies such as Baccarat, Lalique, St. Louis, Riedel, Christofle, and Bernardaud. To learn more about the Boisset Collection, please visit www.boissetcollection.com.