Insider: Kelly E. Carter’s beam to Napa Valley

October 27, 2016 - Finding Carter

  • Kelly E. Carter is a executive of communications during Alpha Omega Winery in St. Helena. Photo: Peter DaSilva, Special To The Chronicle



After 3 years of city life — and anticipating any forgive to revisit Napa Valley on a weekends — Kelly E. Carter done her favorite shun her permanent residence.

In 2015, she changed to Rutherford, a little city with a race of about 164. Every morning, she wakes adult to vineyards right outward her yard and enjoys a two-minute invert to work as a executive of communications for Alpha Omega Winery.

“It’s like a dream come true,” she says.

Carter spent decades as a celebrity, sports and oppulance lifestyle publisher for publications such as USA Today, People and Haute Living repository before channel into a booze universe in March. In 2010, she and Venus Williams co-authored “Come to Win: Business Leaders, Artists, Doctors, and Other Visionaries on How Sports Can Help You Top Your Profession,” a New York Times best-seller.

When she’s not bustling touting Alpha Omega’s domestic wines or joining to sustainability, she takes advantage of Rutherford’s assent and still by operative on her memoir, “Bellini for One,” that covers her dual years as a freelance transport author in Italy. Carter fell in adore with Italy and always designed to pierce back, though for a initial time, she no longer feels that need — a view that desirous her subsequent book: “Napa Is a New Italy.”

“I call Napa a new Italy since all revolves around food and wine,” she says. “Napa is my Italy.”

Janelle Bitker is a freelance writer. Email:

A few favorites

Oat Hill Mine Trail: This 8.3-mile hiking track is Carter’s go-to for “working off a booze while enjoying unconditional views of a Napa Valley,” she says. The travel starts outward downtown Calistoga and can get severe — and rocky. Be prepared to share a trail with bicyclists. 2082 Oat Hill Mine Road, Calistoga; (707) 942-4575.

Rutherford Grill: Locals adore a restaurant’s consistently gratifying comfort food and miss of corkage fee. Carter says a vibe is “so frolicsome that it’s surprising if people during a bar don’t share their bottle of booze with strangers sitting subsequent to them.” 1180 Rutherford Road, Rutherford; (707) 963-1792.

JCB Tasting Salon: Carter recommends sipping a potion of JCB No. 13 bubbly rosé in this oppulance tasting room and sell boutique by Jean-Charles Boisset. Afterward, ramble subsequent doorway to Atelier by JCB for an strenuous preference of cheeses. 6505 Washington St., Yountville; (707) 934-8237.

Cameo Cinema: This ancestral museum was built in 1913, and Carter says it’s a ideal date-night destination. Owner Cathy Buck “does a illusory job” pairing films, food and booze for special events in further to bringing engaging first-run cinema to town. 1340 Main St., St. Helena; (707) 963-9779.

Brasswood Bar + Kitchen: Carter was unhappy to remove Tra Vigne final year, though most of a staff migrated to this new, farm-to-table grill during Cairdean Estate. “Regulars know to sequence a stretched mozzarella, that isn’t on a menu.” 3111 St. Helena Hwy. N., St. Helena; (707) 968-5434.

Napa Valley Vine Trail: Instead of pushing from winery to winery, because not bike? Carter generally appreciates that she can now bike on a trail safeguarded from buzzed or dreaming drivers. Vintner Chuck McMinn paved a approach to yield cyclists protected thoroughfare from South Napa to Yountville — and eventually a track will extend 47 miles, from Vallejo to Calistoga.

Hess Art Collection: It’s giveaway to try this contemporary art museum, that showcases works collected by booze writer Donald M. Hess. “Wine might be a heart of Napa Valley, though art is a soul,” Carter says. “No place combines a dual improved than Hess.” 4411 Redwood Road, Napa; (707) 255-1144.

Miminashi: Whenever Carter finds herself in downtown Napa, she goes to a city’s sole izakaya. The smart menu — yakitori, okonomiyaki, blood sausage boiled rice — is good matched with a restaurant’s unique, comfortable design. Plus, “Miminashi’s late-night kitchen is a large bonus.” 821 Coombs St., Napa; (707) 254-9464.

Jameson Animal Rescue Ranch: Looking to adopt a new friend? Carter is a large believer of this no-kill rescue and refuge for messenger and plantation animals in need, founded by Monica and David Stevens. “When we can have a dog again, we know accurately where I’ll go to find one,” she says. 1224 Adams St., St. Helena; (707) 815-8153.

Alpha Omega Winery: Visit Carter during this dog-friendly, 10-year-old boutique winery owned by Robin and Michelle Baggett. (Robin is a former ubiquitous warn for a Golden State Warriors.) Carter was initial drawn to Alpha Omega for a setting: Along with an umbrella-lined patio unaware thespian fountains, a rustic-chic tasting room sits between vineyards and a Mayacamas Mountains. 1155 Mee Lane, St. Helena; (707) 963-9999.

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