Tom Burgess arrived in the Napa Valley in 1972 when the landscape was vastly different. At that time there were only about two dozen wineries in operation. Napa was by no means the center of California wine it is today. Tom sensed a great potential in the wild and rural land and chose it to pursue his dream of opening a family winery. He was a pioneer because prohibition (1920-1933) had destroyed the Napa wine business and America’s food and wine culture. Tom bought a small mountain-side winery which had been homesteaded in the 1870’s. With many trips to the hardware store and much labor of love the family transformed it into Burgess Cellars. Since 1972 the Burgess Family has worked to realize their vision – to create the very best estate grown grapes and produce unique handcrafted wines that are true complements to the food and wine concept that Tom fell in love with in the 60’s while in Europe.
The French concept of terroir is at the heart of Burgess Cellars’ winemaking process.The Burgess Family follows the belief that in order to produce quality wine, the varietals planted must match the vineyard’s soil composition, sun and wind exposure, and overall micro-climate.
Burgess Cellars produces wines out of three distinct vineyard sites. Our flagship wine, the Cabernet Sauvignon, thrives on the western slopes of Howell Mountain at the winery location. On the valley floor, in the Oak Knoll District, sits Triere® Vineyard, which produces our award-winning Merlot. Our Syrah comes out of the vineyard which is located on the eastern side of Howell Mountain off Ink Grade Road. Currently, we grow eight varieties at our three vineyards with the best site-specific methods. Our consistency and ability to maintain style every year is due to this dedicated concept of only growing our grape varietals where they grow best.