Picayune Cellars


Unlocking Secret Wines from California

Claire Weinkauf and Jennifer Roberts operate a unique, boutique winery in Napa Valley that rescues special lots of wines that did not make it into the final blend at cultish wineries.Their combination of experience in marketing exceptional wines and working with incredible winemakers for many years, led them into a partnership following in négociant style traditions.

Jennifer co-owned a third party wine brokerage company for several years in Sonoma County where she sold fine wines from the most exclusive wineries in the country and the rest of the world. Claire, a French native, arrived in 2006 in California. Claire previously worked in South America, where she was recruited by Paul Hobbs to work at Viña Cobos. After four years working with Paul Hobbs in California, Claire started her own consulting company in 2010. It was not soon after that Claire and Jennifer hatched their plan to use their contacts to access great lots wine and their keen experience to craft them into a compelling offering for the market.

Beside both ladies being in the wine business, wine is actually both their family's business. Claire's husband, Aron Weinkauf, is Vineyard Manager and Winemaker at Spottswoode Winery. Jennifer is married to Nathan Roberts, co-owner of Arnot-Roberts Winery and Cooper. It goes without saying these ladies are well supported in their venture from the home front.

As Claire explains, Picayune (pronounced {pee-ka-ˈyün} ) means "a little bit" in old French. In following that, these ladies are always on the hunt for that "little bit" of the best from famous wineries willing to part with those barrels of wine that didn't make the final blend. When they do find wine like that, it usually comes with the caveat that the source must be confidential. Hence, we may never know exactly where the wine is from, but we can have fun guessing.

Picayune was also the name of the Spanish coin worth half the value of the standard Real coin. Clarie and Jennifer are committed to delivering wines of outstanding quality while still leaving some change in your pocket. The key you find on the label represents the idea of them “unlocking secret wines from California” just for you. 

Since 2011, Claire and Jennifer have bottled a number of incredible lots of wine for their label, Picayune. Napa insiders quickly recognized the outstanding value these women winemakers were putting into their bottlings. For such a young venture to have two wines featured on the French Laundry's wine list is a prestigious achievement.

Jennifer Roberts & Clarie Weinkauf
Jennifer Roberts & Clarie Weinkauf
Country America
Region California Wine
Appellation Napa Valley, North Coast, Sonoma Coast

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