A taste of a Life Well Lived: The Gabrielle Collection taste +
There is a mindset which fastens to the earth in an ecological pursuit of balance and viability. A philosophy rooted in organic and sustainable practices with a vision to create a lifestyle. For the O’Connell Family, the Gabrielle Collection taste + tasting salon in downtown Napa illustrates a “life well lived” through their wine, food, and well-being.
“We look at wine in the contexts of a lifestyle,” explained Proprietor of Gabrielle Collection taste + and O’Connell Family Wines, Gabrielle Leonhard O’Connell. “It all starts in the vineyard. As farmers, you respect the soil and everything that affects it. This point of view inspires all we do.” At the heart of Gabrielle Collection taste + lies a unique and unforgettable experience incorporating small production wines with estate driven products honoring the integrity of the land, a respect attributed to a purist upbringing of food and wine.
“My Mom was a chemist in wine labs in France and a culinary student. My grandfather was a food and wine critic and writer,” said Leonhard O’Connell. “My husband’s grandfathers were farmers and ranchers who grew grapes and raised cattle. We both grew up in an environment that led us to where we are today.”
Bringing the ‘essence of the estate’ into their tasting experience, Gabrielle and Wayne O’Connell feature tastings of rare, boutique wines from the O’Connell Family Estate located in the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley.
The tasting is accented by Gabrielle’s GC Napa Valley culinary, spa, home, and pooch products made from organic estate- grown ingredients. O’Connell Family Wines include the Gabrielle Collection, Gabrielle Limited, Pietro Family Cellars (named after Wayne’s grandfather), and O’Connell Family Vineyards. With a 3,000-case production, O’Connell Family Wines are extremely limited and crafted to pair with food showcasing the versatility, balance, and structure of each wine in their portfolio.
“Our wines are food driven. Wine should dance with food,” expressed Leonhard O’Connell. “We are certified organic and focus on quality and integrity. We use pure ingredients, have an overall appreciation for well-being, and use tightly integrated farming practices which are presented in our tasting salon.”
Pairing small production wines with culinary artistry, Gabrielle Collection taste + offers an authentic lifestyle experience. Guests are greeted with a splash upon arrival and are encouraged to relax, as they embark on a flavor-filled journey engaging the mind, body, and soul. From elegant repurposed furnishings to a sophisticated display of wines and estate- grown product lines, guests are invited to enjoy an intimate tasting in the main lounge or the newly opened patio. All tastings are hosted by a wine and food-loving member of the Gabrielle Collection taste + team, who provide guests with a selection of handcrafted wines accompanied by small bites curated by Gabrielle and general manager and culinary director, Bob Magnani. As a departing gift, visitors are offered a warm, estate lavender-infused towel highlighting the spa product line with a final cleanse and sense of rejuvenation.
“We want our guests to have fun, explore, and provide an inter- active tasting promoting food, wine, and well-being. For us, that is a life well-lived,” said Leonhard O’Connell.
1000 Main St., #150, Napa 94559
Article By: Valerie Owens