The beer is brewing and the doors are officially open to the new Stone Brewing – Napa, a 9,500-sq-ft restaurant and 10-bbl brewery in an iconic 1877 stone building. Stone brings its flavorful craft beer to the region well-known for its amazing wine and cuisine, offering visitors locally brewed beers, a dining experience, growler fills and Stone merchandise.
“Restoring this historic building has been a complex process which we have been careful to steward with the utmost respect,” stated Greg Koch, Stone Brewing Co. executive chairman and co-founder. “So, it is with much pride, and no shortage of relief, that we finally open the doors knowing that we took the time to do it right. Seven years after I first stepped foot in the Borreo building, this place is just what I dreamed of — a top-notch destination devoted to celebrating craft beer.”
Stone’s 10-bbl brewing system will enable the company’s brewers to continue the longstanding tradition of innovation and creativity. The brewing program will be led by Steve Gonzalez, Stone’s six-year veteran small batch senior manager of brewing and innovation. Fortuitously, Gonzalez also had a former career as a winemaker, making him uniquely qualified to bring together the two industries in unique and special ways. This will manifest itself in brewing techniques that include wine-barrel aging, beer recipes that include wine grapes, as well as interesting botanicals from the region’s diverse ecology.
Stone Brewing – Napa will fill growlers and serve Stone’s year-round beers as well as special releases brewed onsite. Guest beers from fellow craft brewers will be featured in a future rotation among 24 taps of beer. Wine by the bottle, glass and on tap will also be available alongside locally-roasted coffee and all-natural craft sodas.
The Stone Brewing World Bistro and Gardens food philosophy will carry over to the new Napa location with a dining experience that incorporates artisanal products, a focus on environmental responsibility and high-quality ingredients. Stone will purchase local and small farm organic produce from the Napa region to support its eclectic menu of world-inspired cuisine. The casual yet distinctive menu items include spent grain soft pretzels, Choripán Argentinian sausage sandwich, a poke fire bowl, and the Stone Brewing impossible burger. Chef Chris Kurth will manage the Stone Brewing – Napa kitchen. Kurth is a San Diego native who has graced the esteemed kitchens of The US Grant, L’Auberge Del Mar and The Lodge at Torrey Pines.
The brewery and restaurant feature two stories including an upstairs seated bar and downstairs tasting/growler fill bar, a fireplace lounge and outdoor seating overlooking the Napa River. Glass walls offer views into the brewery and expansive doors and windows create an indoor/outdoor feel overlooking Downtown Napa. The interior incorporates stone, steel and glass and embraces the imperfections of the historic building. The Borreo building, named for the family that formerly owned the stone structure, is an Italianate Renaissance design made from native-cut stone. It was completed in 1877 and has been vacant since 2001.
Stone’s new outpost is located on 3rd and Soscol Avenue serving lunch and dinner daily. Parking is available across Soscol Ave., less than two blocks away on 3rd street. Its May 6 opening was a preview of the full offering, with menu items and draft beer selections expanding over the following month. Admittedly, putting a brewery and kitchen inside a 141-year-old building posed unexpected delays and the team is ramping up service with a full experience expected in early June.
Stone’s Napa project is the first of three upcoming destinations on a mission to fight the good fight for independent craft beer. Just one week prior to the opening of Stone Brewing – Napa, the Stone Brewing Tap Room – Prenzlauer Berg opened in the Berlin city center, 53 minutes by bike from the brewery and Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Berlin. Also underway, Stone Brewing Tap Room – Shanghai is scheduled to open in China this June.