Allison Yoder, manager of PRESS Restaurant in the Napa Valley town of St. Helena, has announced that sommeliers Kelli White and Scott Brenner have joined her staff to manage the restaurant’s spectacular collection of Napa wines.
“In addition to ensuring world-class wine service for our guests, Kelli and Scott will be managing every aspect of our remarkable all-Napa wine list,” Yoder said. “We have a unique wine program at PRESS, and I am excited to welcome these knowledgeable and experienced sommeliers to the team.”
“We love being at PRESS,” said White. “We have access here to small-lot wines you simply can’t find (at any other restaurant). It’s a real pleasure to be able to introduce people to the latest offerings from up-and-coming Napa winemakers as well as this fabulous collection of the great heritage wines.”
Brenner added that he also looks forward to further extending the selection of vintages for famous Napa wines on the PRESS list.
Both White and Brenner have impressive wine credentials, and this spring their aspirations dovetailed nicely with PRESS’s search for a sommelier. The two sommeliers met in New York City, where they shared their desire to live full-time in wine country rather than simply visiting from time to time. The opportunity to work at PRESS, with California’s most comprehensive list of Napa Valley wines, was a dream come true.
White began her wine industry career as general manager and wine buyer for University Wine Shop in Harvard Square in Cambridge, Mass. Following a wine internship in Burgundy, she settled in New York City. She sold wine for Domaine Select for two years, worked at Tuthilltown Distillery in upstate New York, and ultimately became head sommelier at New York’s prestigious Veritas restaurant, where she managed one of the world’s great international wine lists. She also is a contributing journalist for various wine publications, including Organic Wine Journal and Sommelier Journal.
Brenner started as a sommelier in Seattle, where he worked at Kimpton Hotel Group’s The Painted Table, at Wolfgang Puck’s ObaChine, and at Avenue One. On the East Coast he guided guests through an extensive French wine list at the famed White Horse Tavern in Newport, R.I. Moving to New York, he managed the wine program for celebrity chef Charlie Palmer’s original New York restaurant, Aureole. At Clo Wines, a cutting-edge wine bar in the Time-Warner Building, he helped develop a rotating by-the-glass choice of 100 of the world’s greatest wines. His latest position before moving to Napa was sommelier at Gordon Ramsay at the London (New York), a 2-star Michelin restaurant.
PRESS Restaurant celebrates the famous red wines of the Napa Valley with prime dry-aged beef grilled over cherry-and almond-wood, roast chicken from the wood-fired rotisserie, and locally raised lamb and pork.
Chef Stephen Rogers’ daily menu of wild fish and seafood dishes provides equally high notes for lovers of Napa Valley white wines.
The restaurant’s comfortable vineyard setting includes indoor and patio fireplaces and a handcrafted walnut bar, framed by temperature-controlled wine towers showcasing an extensive Napa-only wine collection. The list includes the valley’s most famous wines, the latest “cult” favorites and exciting new finds to pair with the splendid cuisine – a true wine lover’s paradise.