Jess Jackson and Barbara Banke just increased their presence in Napa Valley with the purchase of the land and production facility of Chateau Potelle.
The deal includes 30-plus acres of Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel and Chardonnay, but not the Potelle brand or inventory, which will remain in the hands of the founders, Jean-Noel and Marketta Fourmeaux du Sartel.
The vineyard is adjacent to Jackson’s Veeder Peak Vineyard, whose grapes go into Jackson-owned Lokoya.
Clay Gregory, president of Jackson Family Wines, the organizational arm of Kendall-Jackson and Artisans & Estates, says it’s unlikely the Jacksons will establish a new brand for the Mount Veeder-grown grapes. “The Cabernet could be home for Lokoya, and the most likely place for the Chardonnay and Zinfandel is Freemark Abbey,” says Gregory.
Besides those two brands, the other Jackson Family wineries in Napa Valley are La Jota, Atalon and Cardinale.
The purchase price was not disclosed. The Fourmeaux family also owns Gravity Hills, an estate winery in Paso Robles. Jean-Noel Fourmeaux took a philosophical view of parting with the winery he established nearly 25 years ago. “We have Gravity Hills, a little money in the bank and inventory. We will move next spring, which will give us lots of time to see what we’re going to do and how we organize ourselves.”