The Prisoner Wine Company

The Prisoner Wine Company
1178 Galleron Rd
St Helena, CA  94574

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Open daily 11–6

Insider Tips

What to Buy

’16 Headlock Charbono, Napa Valley
Black plum, blueberries $50

’17 No. 39007 Chenin Blanc
Ripe peach, honeysuckle $37

’15 Thorn Merlot, Napa Valley
Ripe cherry cobbler, cocoa $45

Special Notes

Private tastings & tours by appt, Outdoor patio, Culinary garden, Interactive artisan experiences, Wine Club events


The Prisoner Wine Company has a new home on Highway 29. The stunning property showcases a stellar lineup of wines in an environment that inspires imagination and creativity.

This seems only fitting for a company whose edgy flagship wine, The Prisoner, was first released nearly two decades ago. The wine quickly drew attention for crossing traditional rules and appellation lines. Today, The Prisoner remains a sublime, complex blend of California’s best and most unusual grape varieties inspired by the original wines of the Napa Valley. Each vintage is guided by Director of Winemaking Chrissy Wittman and her team who work with more than 100 growers to find the most exceptional fruit to produce a family of bold, intriguing wines. In addition to The Prisoner, the portfolio includes Blindfold, a white blend; The Snitch, a Chardonnay; Cuttings, a Cabernet Sauvignon; Saldo, a Zinfandel; Thorn, a Merlot; Dérangé, a luxury red blend; plus several tasting room–only wines such as Chenin Blanc, Rosé, and Charbono.

The Prisoner Wine Company tasting lounge offers guests unique and unexpected wine, food, and craft experiences in an amazing space designed by two of wine country’s most renowned designers: Architect Matt Hollis and Interior Designer Richard Von Saal.

Although walk-ins are always welcome, the winery strongly recommends that visitors plan ahead and make advance reservations to assure they’ll have the best guest experience.

What’s more, those who plan ahead can make arrangements to discover the culinary talents of Winery Chef Brett Young through various interactive experiences. The chef is particularly excited about opportunities revolving around open-fire cooking, serving primal cuts, roasting whole vegetables in ash, and smoking heads of cabbage over charcoal from Japan. Guests can look forward to bold flavors such as berbere spice from Ethiopia and techniques including Japanese yakitori grilling.

In every case, Chef Brett’s exotic dishes pair harmoniously with the bold personalities of The Prisoner Wine Company’s portfolio of wines.


Followers of The Prisoner have come to expect the unexpected, and the new tasting environment does not disappoint. In addition to the riveting Tasting Lounge and The Yard, there’s The Makery. This onsite community of artisans, designers, and creators collaborate to reflect the artistic and untraditional identity of The Prisoner Wine Company. It began in 2016 as The Makery Experience, a series of pop-up gatherings in cultural communities across the country. Now it has become The Makery at The Prisoner Wine Company, where Makers bring the art of creation to life through interactive experiences The Makery consists of an airy hall with four individual studios opening off of it. Each studio is occupied by a Maker in Residence who joins The Makery for a three-month immersion. Provided with an adaptable space all their own, Makers will draw inspiration from The Prisoner Wine Company’s home in Napa Valley to create, design, compose, and craft. Guests are invited to interact with artisans and creators of art, music, cuisine, sculpture, design, fashion, and crafts, situated in an environment specifically designed to spark discovery and challenge the wine country status quo.

THE LINE UP A sit-down pairing of five wines and surprise take-away gift
THE MAKERY JOURNEY Guided wine tour through vineyard, culinary gardens
THE MAKERY UNBOUND An interactive wine and food pairing curated by winery chef

Q&A with Winemaker Chrissy Wittman

"We share this common passion with our grower partners—to preserve the land and keep tradition alive while pushing the boundaries”  —CHRISSY WITTMAN

Why do you do work with so many top-notch growers across California? Our grower partners are extremely important. Many of the red varieties originally planted in Napa Valley—known as “mixed blacks”—are being pulled out and replaced by the more lucrative Cabernet Sauvignon. These heritage grapes, like Zinfandel, Syrah, and Petite Sirah, are the backbone of The Prisoner blend, so we’re very grateful that we’ve found growers who will keep growing these varieties for us. We share this common passion with our grower partners—preserving the land and keeping tradition alive, while pushing the boundaries. Together we grow ever-better grapes and make better wine. We couldn’t do it without them!

What challenges do you face when crafting the iconic Prisoner? Blending is key to the complexity and unexpected character of The Prisoner. Not only do we blend grape varieties together in unusual combinations, we also source these grapes from dozens of vineyards, vinifying each lot separately before blending selected lots together to create the final wine. This process gives us the layers of flavor and rich texture that people love in The Prisoner.

What other currently released wines should we put on our radar screens? All of them, of course, but I’ll tell you about two. Blindfold is an unusual union of Rhône and Burgundy varieties, making for a rich and mouthwatering wine that will pair well with a variety of meals or as an apéritif during the fall and winter months. Also, you must visit us and try Syndrome Rosé, a tasting room–only wine. In true Prisoner fashion, it’s a must-have blend of five different varietals in one Rosé: Grenache, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Mourvèdre, and Sangiovese. Delicious, no doubt.


Tasting Room: No

Complimentary Tastings: No

Tastings — By Appointment Only: No

Tours: No

Tours — By Appointment Only: No

Private Tours: No

VIP & Educational Experiences: No

Exceptional Views: No

Club Member Lounge: No

Restaurant / Deli: No

Food / Wine Pairings: No

Gift Shop: No

Wedding Facilities: No

Event Facilities: No

Corp. Meetings: No

Guest House on Premises: No

Lawn Games: No

Family Friendly: No

Pet Friendly: No

Family Owned and Operated: No

Wine Cave: No

Art/Architectural Interest: No

Sustainable Practices: No