Built between 1860 and 1900, Ghost Wineries were part of the initial wine boom in Napa Valley. There were hundreds of wineries in the region at the time but prohibition forced all but a few to either change crops to stay profitable or close down for good. These wineries, especially those that were abandoned, have taken on many different appearances today. Some have succumbed to the wear and tear of the years and elements, while others have been converted into various other forms such as shops, restaurants, or even private residences. Many more ghost wineries have been renovated. A few have been converted into modern, state-of-the-art wine producing facilities while others have been remodeled as purely aesthetic and historical reminders of the way things used to be in Napa Valley. Many ghost wineries have been restored to their former glory and are functioning the same today as they did over 100 years ago.
While thrill-seekers may be hoping there are real spirits in our ghost wineries, they’re bound to find only a sense of pride and history that is unique to Napa Valley… The memories of a time when the frontier held hope and fertile land to carry on family traditions in wine-making or to practice their love of wine that was discovered in Europe.
There are many ghost wineries in Napa Valley. Our curators will tailor a wine experience to your tastes that can certainly include stops to any of these well-known ghost wineries. The future and the past will surely come together as you roll up in a Tesla Model S all-Electric luxury sedan to a wine-producing facility that is over a century old.
Originally built in 1885, Bergfeld Winery changed hands many times until prohibition ended. After prohibition it was operated again under the Bergfeld Winery name until 1994 when it became Edgewood Estate. In 2003 it was purchased by the Hall family who rebuilt it as a state-of-the-art facility. The old winery is still around for those who would like to see it, but the Hall family has the distinction of being the first winery in the state to be LEED (Leader in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certified. It’s a combination of old and new, past and present.Today’s Hall Estate is a fantastic example of a ghost winery that has become something new.
Built in 1876, the Franco-Swiss Winery was producing over 100,000 gallons of wine a year during the 1880’s but like nearly every other winery in the country, it shut down during prohibition. It was later converted into a perlite factory and then was abandoned for years until it was discovered by Richard and Leslie Mansfield, who became enamored with the property. As the last ghost winery available for renovation, the Mansfields pursued the owner for 13 years before he finally sold it to them. The next battle was getting permission to make renovations, followed by the struggle of renovating a building that was over 130 years old. It was an ongoing process, but the building was restored to work exactly as it did all those years ago, and is now operating as the Mansfield Winery in St. Helena.