Located off Highway 29 and less than five miles from downtown Napa, Ashes & Diamonds is the vision of multimedia and advertising executive Kashy Khaledi. When Khaledi embarked on the project, he wanted to pay homage to the days when Napa Valley was breaking onto the world stage in the 1960’s. He put his plan into motion in 2014 when the wine production began and opened the winery in the Fall of 2017.
With its mid-century design and retro vibes, the winery will be celebrating its five year anniversary during this harvest season. It’s not only the architecture of the winery that is inspired by the retro days of the 60’s and 70’s but it’s wines are as well. To achieve the feat of crafting classic and elegant wines reminiscent of those early Napa days, Khaledi turned to renowned winemaker Steve Matthiasson who continues to be with the winery to this day. Winemaker Dan Petroski also joined the original winemaking team but since has moved on. To replace Petroski, Khaledi continued his commitment to hiring blue-chip winemakers when he added Napa native, Diana Snowden Seysses to the Ashes & Diamond Family.
When we visited in the Fall, we thoroughly enjoyed the A&D Wines + Food experience. This family-style luncheon focuses on seasonal inspired dishes prepared by their in-house chefs. Although it is hard to pick a favorite dish, perhaps it might have been the Garden Cucumbers grilled salad. Accompanied with Hazelnut Dukkah, Tomato Water and Ricotta, it introduced us to a combination of flavor profiles we had not experienced before.
Highlighting the diverse flavors of the meal were wines that showed elegance and balance. Some of our favorites were their Blanc, which is a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon, their 2018 Cabernet Franc which was one of our favorite Cab Francs of the trip and their powerful but silky 2018 Red Hen Cabernet Sauvignon.