A premium collage of old world artisan oenology and new world viticulture, “Aratas” (pronounced Era-toss), is the Napa Valley’s producer dedicated to the cultivation of vineyard designate Petite Sirah.
A noble vitis vinifera born from Syrah and Peloursin, Petite is hearty with history and perseverance (circa 1884). One of the founding noble Fathers in California’s wine history, the American Heritage variety Petite Sirah laid the foundation for what is known today as the most revered viticulture area in America, the Napa Valley, California’s 1st AVA.
The unique brand is a partnership founded on decades of experience in our country’s food and wine culture. Co- Proprietors, brothers John and Mickey Chohany, launched their first of many notable culinary endeavors; Second Street Restaurant an American Bistro in 1985 in the historic hamlet of Williamsburg, Virginia. Twenty five years later, led by Vintner Stephanie Douglas the partners founded Aratas Wine and created the perfect pairing to complete their culinary vision.
For several years, the partners produced a single Petite Sirah crafted and bottled by hand with fruit from a small vineyard in the District of Oak Knoll AVA. A meticulous wine; produced simply for personal enjoyment. In 2008 however, an unexpected and tragic turn of events presented them the opportunity to take their craft in a new direction so with that, Aratas Wine became a brand for all. Three years later the sought after premier vintage of Aratas Wine emerged from the cellar.
The popularity of the brand has grown and with that comes new wine from the cellar including a single vineyard Chardonnay and Rose’ as well as the “Veneration” a red blend designed to express a softer style of Petite. The team is very selective and devoted to producing exceptional vineyard designate wines uniting sustainable practices with state of the art vinification processes. About that name… Aratas, by definition means a “harvest of gold” and was chosen to honor the Chohany’s Hungarian heritage.
We invite you to taste it for yourself at our new experience salon in the Oxbow district of Napa: The Feast Studio: 1031 McKinstry Street, Napa, CA 94558 10:30-8pm (closed Wednesday). No appointment needed. Picnics, pets and families are welcome.
Founder and Brand Director, Stephanie Douglas is the creative partner and passionate force behind Aratas Wine. From a bay area family with early ties to California’s wine export and distribution business, her roots are firmly planted in the Napa Valley.
Married to co-founder and east coast restaurateur John Chohany, she spreads her time between the coasts of California and Virginia. Today she is a renaissance leader in California as Napa Valley’s only producer solely dedicated to the American Heritage Varietal Petite Sirah. Stephanie serves on the board of the Petite Sirah Advocacy Organization (PSILoveYou.org). Her work includes wine education and developing programs which further the mission to shine a light on the historic significance of Petite Sirah’s epic journey. She also serves on the board of Chesapeake Bay Wine Classic Foundation (CBWC.org) and is a member of the Napa Valley Vintners Association www.napavintners.org. Recently, Stephanie has been a distinguished guest speaker for the Culinary Institute Of America/Copia “Masters of Petite Sirah” and the Mondiale of the “Chaine de Rotissuers”.
Contact Stephanie if you would like to access Aratas Wine.
Order by Phone:(707)299.9119 Order online: www.arataswine.com/buy-wine/
*You must be 21 years of age to buy wine
John & Mickey Chohany
John and Mickey Chohany, are founding partners whose Hungarian heritage gave name sake to Aratas. Like Petite Sirah, these brothers are ardent, bold, multifarious and extremely entertaining. Their first of four restaurants, the flagship Second Street American Bistro http://www.secondst.com in Williamsburg, Virginia has been an award winning establishment for three decades and a Wine Spectator Award of Excellence destination. Their commitment to artisan cuisine is appreciated all the more with the accompaniment of fine wine. In 2005 they received a Commendation from the Senate of the Commonwealth of Virginia for their achievement and leadership in the food and wine industry. It is only natural the Chohany brothers have taken to producing a wine they are as proud of as the restaurant brand they have spent decades in the making.
Matt Sunseri, Winemaker
Home grown in the heart of Napa Valley, Matt’s immersion into the world of wine was simply intrinsic. Following a summer working in the historic Beringer Vineyards, his expanding interest in the science of wine garnered him to pursue a Bachelor of Science with a degree in Viticulture and Enology from the globally recognized University of California at Davis. His professional endeavor lead him to opportunities to work alongside notable winemakers Helen Turley, Heidi Barrett then Paul Hobbs, Angelina Mondavi, Helen Keplinger and Steve Rogstad.
As winemaker for Aratas Wine, we appreciate his ability to build great vintages from the gifts, and challenges, Mother Nature grants us and are most impressed with his capacity to anticipate vintage variation and deftly craft outstanding wines that capture both terroir characteristics and true varietal identity. Matt is devoted to viniculture in America’s most esteemed wine region but grounded by time spent with his family. When not buried deep in the cellar he takes pleasure in the great outdoors camping with his wife Jennifer and two children or pursuing sport in a round on the golf course.
We celebrate his focus and piercing attention to detail as the Director of Winemaking for Aratas Wine.