Long Meadow Ranch Receives
City Council Approval for ‘Farmstead’ Project
Sheamus Feeley named as Executive Chef
March 25, 2009 St. Helena, CA
Long Meadow Ranch announced today that it has received approval from the St. Helena City Council for its innovative ‘farmstead’ project. Previously approved and recommended by the St. Helena Planning Commission, the project’s approval is the final regulatory step in launching the wine, food, and agricultural center to be located on a 3-acre parcel at 738 Main Street near the southern entrance to St. Helena.
Also announced today, Sheamus Feeley will become executive chef of the Farmstead Restaurant, one of the project’s central features. The new eating establishment will be located in the property’s contemporary barn and will have indoor and outdoor seating for up to 160 guests. Feeley was most recently executive chef/research and development for Hillstone Restaurants where he had direct responsibility for Rutherford Grill, one of Napa Valley’s most successful restaurants.
To be known as Long Meadow Ranch Winery & Farmstead, the project will include the Farmstead Restaurant featuring distinctive farm-to-table dining, a wine and olive oil tasting room, a full organic nursery with farm supplies, demonstration gardens, and a seasonal outdoor farmer's marketplace. Ted, Laddie, and Chris Hall, proprietors of Long Meadow Ranch, have created the multi-use project’s vision and will oversee the historic property’s return to its agricultural roots. Kevin Twohey, the owner of Whiting Nursery which currently occupies the property, will operate the organic nursery and farm supply business.
“Last night’s city council approval was a crucial step in moving forward on this exciting new way to serve our community,” said Ted Hall. “We plan to begin the renovation and reconfiguration of the property immediately and we are hoping to have the new site open to the public before Thanksgiving,” he added.
Chef Feeley will bring his ingredient-driven cooking style to utilize the organic produce, grass-fed beef, eggs, and olive oils from Long Meadow Ranch and other local artisanal producers. The Farmstead’s farm-to-table menu, which will include an exceptional children’s menu, will highlight fresh local and regional ingredients and will feature the sustainably produced wines from Long Meadow Ranch and other international artisanal winegrowers.
“I am thrilled to have this opportunity to create an exciting dining experience at moderate prices that brings fresh, healthy food to the table.” said Feeley. “My cooking style has always been driven by the seasons and I now have the opportunity to take local ingredients at their peak freshness and prepare them to showcase their true essence,” he added.
Feeley is from a multi-generational farming family and began working for his father, a classically trained chef, at age fifteen. By eighteen, his father encouraged Feeley to work for Milanese chef, Andrea Frizzi. Following a stint in Peru and other culinary adventures, Feeley took a position with Wolfgang Puck and later opened Sacre Blue as the chef de cuisine with Don Gragg of Gramercy Tavern and Chez Panisse. He has also worked in France with Chef Michele de Mateis and was a chef/owner of Mateo Restaurant in Boulder, Colorado.
In 2003, Feeley joined the Hillstone Restaurant Group in Los Angeles. Before moving to the Napa Valley, he worked in the group’s restaurants in New Orleans, Palm Beach, and Beverly Hills. In addition to leading the team at Rutherford Grill, Feeley became the executive chef/research and development for Hillstone Restaurants in 2006. In this role, he led the openings of five restaurants and developed management techniques for forty-eight locations across the United States.
The project will break ground within the next few weeks starting with the renovation of the historic Logan/Ives residence. The classic Gothic architecture farmhouse is slated to serve as the Long Meadow Ranch Winery tasting room which is targeted to open in mid-October. Whiting Nursery will remain open for business throughout the project. By summer, the first demonstration and educational gardens will be planted and the Farmstead Restaurant may open as early as late fall
“My family is committed to bringing together our fresh, locally and sustainably produced food and wines in an easily accessible location where guests can also acquire the knowledge and tools to grow and prepare great produce themselves. We hope to create a ‘must’ stop for our community, visitors, friends, and family,” concluded Chris Hall.
Long Meadow Ranch has been known as such since 1872 when it was established as an original "patent grant" ranch signed over by President Ulysses S. Grant. Owned by Ted, Laddie & Christopher Hall, Long Meadow Ranch employs an integrated organic farming system using sustainable methods.
Each part of the Ranch contributes to the health of the whole. Vineyards and wine making, olive orchards and olive oil making, cattle and horse breeding all work together in complementary fashion, as do the egg-laying poultry flock and the organic vegetable gardens.
"Excellence through Responsible Farming" is the motto of Long Meadow Ranch, bolstered by the belief that world-class products can be produced using sustainable, organic farming methods. All crops are certified organic by the California Certified Organic Farmers and are grown without the use of herbicides, pesticides, or chemical fertilizers.
Contact: Chris Hall
vox 707.963.4555 x151