Hello again. We’ve probably met before at a tasting or dinner party. (Oh, how we miss big dinner parties.)
But in these crazy times, you do what’s possible. We’ve decided to start an occasional blog to connect and keep up with everyone. Please, pour a glass and sit awhile.
So much has changed. Like you, we’ve been in and out of stay-at-home orders in the Stag’s Leap District of Napa. We’ve watched the government changes and political struggles happening close by, and on the other side of the country. We’ve dealt with increasingly wild weather here, wind to wildfires. And then there are the pandemic’s effects in waves, sneaking in everywhere.
What can you do? We’ve had to put aside our usual wanderlust and figure out how best to move forward. We’ve dug in, literally, to this land. We’re planning new vineyard blocks. And we’ve thought much about our beginnings here and where we’d like to go.
When our family first kicked around possible names and landed on 4 Winds, Roy was just arriving in California after years in Asia building a creative tech business that he’d recently sold. It was a homecoming for him, returning to the Pacific coast where he’d gone to college.
Jane, meanwhile, was thrilled to welcome her son to this hilltop estate she’d purchased more than 15 years earlier. Ever the outdoorsman, Roy began to hike parts of the 111 acres daily and watch the hawks flying overhead. He’d help open and fill the wine cellar (once used for furniture storage), and he worked with Thomas Rivers Brown to plan for the first estate vines at 4 Winds.
Roy also rekindled a relationship with Maura, who he’d dated at UC-Santa Cruz in the 1990s. She visited him at 4 Winds and fit right into the wine country lifestyle. She was soon pulling on boots and denim to help with the garden and the livestock-guarding dogs, and eventually a flock of egg-laying hens. We’re happy to announce that Maura and Roy are planning a wedding celebration at 4 Winds in 2022.
We’ll surely to have more to share about love and weddings in upcoming posts. Of course, we’re also eager to bring updates about the Cabernet Sauvignon we are growing and wines we’re bottling. We can share some history of the region and lessons from this unique ecosystem. And we’re sure to have recipes from the kitchen garden, farm stories and wildlife sightings. Maybe some music and book recommendations, too.
Lately we’ve been back into John Steinbeck, and his famous novel “Of Mice and Men” that’s set in the valleys and mountainsides of California. It’s some comfort to think of scenery from the 1930s that’s so timelessly close to what’s outside our windows, even in such a bizarre year.
“Evening of a hot day started the little wind to moving among the leaves,” Steinbeck wrote. “The shade climbed up the hills toward the top. And then came the sound of footsteps on crisp sycamore leaves…”
We turn the page for more. And we invite you to stick with us, for tales ahead from 4 Winds.
The Chapin Family