Wine titan Jean-Charles Boisset has won the right to create more visitor space for his Raymond Vineyards winery after the Napa County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 to uphold an earlier County Planning Commission decision.
He bought Raymond Vineyards in 2009 and made the property a destination as much as a winery, with a focus on a luxury.
Boisset was born in Burgundy to entrepreneurial parents, who founded a family winery in the region, but it’s been in California that he’s flourished. Today, his family’s holdings include properties in the South of France, Napa Valley and the Russian River Valley.
Boisset bought the 25-acre Ticen Ranch adjacent to Raymond’s 61 acres. In March, he went before the commission seeking to merge the properties in order to turn the ranch’s 19th-century house and barn into an additional visitors’ center and offices, and create a new entrance on Highway 29, one of Napa’s main roads. The commission approved the plan, but some grape growers and vineyard owners appealed to the Board of Supervisors.
Longtime Napa County grape grower Andy Beckstoffer was among those who appealed the commission’s decision. Beckstoffer argued that Boisset was emphasizing hospitality over agriculture, the Napa Valley Register reported.
“Now they want to take land out of [agriculture] solely for the purpose of hospitality,” Beckstoffer told the five-member Board of Supervisors.
However, the supervisors voted 3-2 last week in favor of Boisset.