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St. Helena and its Quaint Two-Block Main Street are Captivating - Napa Valley

St. Helena and its Quaint Two-Block Main Street are Captivating

By Published On: March 20th, 2022

St. Helena is a community, with a strong sense of ’neighborhood.’

Located at the narrowing of the Valley floor, its vibrant retail district is balanced by quiet, Sycamore-lined residential streets featuring winsome 19th century architecture, all surrounded by the stunning Mayacamas mountains and the Napa River.

You’ll find dozens of gourmet eateries, clothing and shoe boutiques, housewares, and of course, wine. Napa’s winemaking heritage actually began in St. Helena, home to the region’s first winery, Charles Krug. 

STAY: 

Alila Napa Valley
This chic hotel shares its St. Helena location with historic Beringer Vineyard, and many of its 68 guest rooms are within arm’s length of the grapes. The three-acre property is anchored by the 100-year old Georgian-style Acacia House – a veranda-wrapped architectural icon that belies the modernity found within.

Lavishly sleek quarters feature expansive private outdoor balconies with gas-lit fire pits. A small yet sumptuous spa and highly regarded on-site restaurant complete the decadent picture.

DINE:

Charter Oak: Housed in a historic and dramatic brick building, an open hearth takes center stage where seasonal items are simply and compellingly prepared at the direction of owner/chef Christopher Kostow. Enjoy a crafted cocktail by the fire pit on the front patio. 

Gott’s Roadside: No ordinary fast-food joint, this is the perfect stop between wine tasting outings. Burgers, ahi poke tacos, and fresh salads are the perfect accompaniments to the wines selected by owner and local vintner Joel Gott. 

Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch: Farmstead’s menu offerings feature the talents of the area’s chefs, farmers, cattle ranchers, and winemakers who together help to create a unique Napa Valley dining experience.

TASTE:

Louis Martini: Offering nearly ten different tasting experiences, Louis Martini has something for everyone. A grand atrium with dramatic 30 foot high glass walls captivates, while the expansive outdoor Martini Park features a bucolic sycamore grove with sunlight dappled tables and private cabanas for al fresco wine service. 

Crown Bar at Louis M. Martini Winery.
Crown Bar, courtesy of Louis M. Martini Winery

Salvestrin: A rare gem, Salvestrin has, since 1932, remained in the hands of three generations, with a fourth ready and poised to one day continue the tradition. A deep commitment to the land and to the vines is evident in the winery’s five delicious varietals – Sauvignon Blanc, Petite Sirah, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and a Super Tuscan blend called Retaggio. 

Salvestrin Winery exterior.
Salvestrin Winery. Photo by Fran Miller

VGS Chateau Potelle: Frenchman Jean-Noel Fourmeaux has been making wine in Napa for 30 years. His 2016 Fourmeaux Red Blend hit a then record sale price at the 2018 NV Barrel Auction, selling for essentially $952 per bottle. The small, unassuming, yet whimsical tasting room is a special place to wine taste.

SHOP

Napa Valley Vintage Home: Laura Rombauer of Rombauer wine fame personally curates a beautiful collection of unique and mostly European-inspired gift items and decorative home goods in this charming boutique along Main St. She can often be found working in the store.

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