History of Meadowbrook Farm
Meadowbrook Farm was first built in 1967 by Lenore Stearns, a famous silent movie actress. The original construction was a simple quaint farmhouse, but it wasn’t until the second owners Ron and Joanne Birtcher acquired the property in 1988 that Meadowbrook Farm truly realized its full potential. The farmhouse was completely renovated to become their dream English Cottage in the Napa Valley. They meticulously curated every detail on the property, even to the extent of collaborating with Disney Engineers to create a Prohibition Era Napa Valley Train Room with a matching model train set, which just so happens to double as a wine cellar.
In April of 2017, the second owners were looking to downsize and sold the property to our family. At first, our only intention was to keep Meadowbrook Farm as a private home and getaway for our family and to continue selling the grapes to prominent Napa Valley wineries. However, just a mere 6 months after moving to the Napa Valley, we were faced with the unprecedented 2017 North Bay wildfires which spurred our decision to launch a new wine brand and create a 2017 California wildfire relief Rosé.
Along with the renovation of the farmhouse in 1988 came the crucial decision to plant 17 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. As it turns out, this would be one of the first Vineyards Steve Matthiasson farmed when he was just starting out as a viticulturalist. Knowing firsthand the potential of the terroir and having even made small batches of wine for Ron and Joanne Birtcher in the past, Steve decided to return to work on Meadowbrook Farm as our winemaker and viticultural consultant. In the mouth of the Dry Creek canyon, upstream from the Red Hen, the Meadowbrook Cabernet Sauvignon receives the nightly air current down from Mt. Veeder, which also blocks the intense late afternoon sun. This makes it one of the cooler climate locations in the Napa Valley. The coolness and sun protection lets the fruit develop and maintain an unusually strong backbone of acidity and tannin. Every year, on schedule, as the nights get cold, the leaves change color and drop before any other vineyard in the area, signaling that the fruit is ready to harvest. The vineyard sits on old creek deposits, and the soil is composed of thin layers of clay interspersed with coarse sand, and underlain with dry cobbles and silt. The vineyard provides structure, firm acidity, and complex savory flavors of olive, tea leaf, and tobacco.