Flora Springs Winery & Vineyards is family owned and operated, committed to hand-crafting wines of distinct style and superior quality. Their wines, and the manner in which they operate, reflect an understanding of tradition and a tireless quest as innovators. Read more in this Partner Spotlight with John Komes, Co-Founder and Proprietor.
What prompted the founders to establish Flora Springs Winery?
When my parents, Jerry and Flora Komes, bought the property that would become Flora Springs in 1977, I immediately became fascinated with the idea of making wine; I’d caught the wine bug and had made a little homemade wine in my garage. Plus, my sister Julie (Garvey Komes) and I, along with our spouses, recognized that farming vineyards and making wine offered a way of life that would allow us to raise our families in a peaceful, rural environment. We loved the idea of being able to connect with each other and with the land in a deeper way.
How has Flora Springs Winery grown since Jerry and Flora Komes purchased the property in 1977?
We started with our estate in St. Helena, but over the years our search for great fruit led us to acquire vineyards in some of Napa Valley’s best appellations, including Rutherford, Oakville, St. Helena and Carneros. From these estate vineyards – 350 acres in all – we produce a deep portfolio of wines including Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot. Our wines are available nationally in restaurants and wine shops, but we also have two wine clubs and two tasting rooms – The Estate and The Room – in St. Helena, and produce several tasting room and wine club only wines.
What is unique about Flora Springs’ wines?
As far as I know we’re one of the few remaining family-owned and operated wineries in Napa Valley, There just aren’t that many anymore and I’m proud to say that the third generation (my son and my nephew) are now involved on a day-to-day basis running the vineyards and winery. We’ve always focused on quality over quantity, and our wines are made with 100% Napa Valley fruit from vineyards we own and farm. Trilogy is our flagship wine; it was among the first proprietary Bordeaux-style red blends in Napa Valley. And our five Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignons consistently earn scores of 90 and above. We’re also known for Soliloquy, a Sauvignon Blanc from our Oakville vineyard made from the family’s proprietary Soliloquy clone. And the old stone Ghost Winery on our property – which was built in 1885 and renovated when I got here – continues to be our winemaking home.
How has Flora Springs Winery adapted to new winemaking practices and technology?
We’ve always tried to be on the cutting edge of new winemaking and growing practices. We were one of the first Napa Valley wineries to experiment with barrel fermenting Chardonnay and one of the first to produce a Bordeaux-style proprietary red blend. We were an early adopter of sustainable and organic farming practices, and we have a solar array which generates energy for the winery and vineyards. These days we are experimenting with different fermentation techniques and aging vessels, and there’s always something new going on in the vineyards. I’ve always said that you can’t stand still in this industry; every vintage provides a fresh opportunity to learn something new.
How has being in the San Francisco Bay Area helped Flora Springs Winery?
My sister and I grew up in the Bay Area and have spent our entire lives here. I don’t think Napa Valley would be what it is today without its proximity to the people and culture of San Francisco. Like the Bay Area, Napa Valley is filled with young, creative, motivated people working to produce excellence, and Flora Springs is proud to be a part of it.