Heritage: Vintage Wine Country Tableware
Heritage Culinary Artifacts
During nearly a decade as a sommelier at esteemed restaurants like Martini House and Auberge du Soleil in Napa Valley, Lisa Minucci collected vintage tableware, buying pieces while on wine-scouting trips around the world. Just over a year ago, she opened Heritage Culinary Artifacts in the new Oxbow Public Market in downtown Napa to sell off some of her collection—everything from 1915 Georg Jensen sterling silver corkscrews to 19th-century English pewter toasting cups with bottoms shaped like fox heads (finish the drink before putting it down, or it will spill).
“When Oxbow opened, I could not pass up opening a store,” she says. “It let me both empty out my house and buy new things.” Chefs and restaurateurs have become regular customers at her eclectic, chockablock shop: Bay Area restaurateur Pat Kuleto bought some of Minucci’s hand-forged knives, cleavers and meat hooks to decorate Epic Roasthouse in San Francisco, while chefs Lissa Doumani and Hiro Sone (of San Francisco’s Ame and St. Helena’s Terra) grabbed a cast-iron headcheese mold in the shape of a hog’s head.
A few years ago, Minucci started learning to butcher, which might explain the store’s wide range of pig-related paraphernalia, like a piggy bank that doubles as a knife block (the blade fits in the coin slot) and a stuffed wild boar. “Everything here has a history,” Minucci says. “When I sell it, I become part of the history, too.”
Lisa Minucci’s Wine Picks
2007 Paolo Scavino Dolcetto d’Alba ($20): From a top Piedmont producer.
2005 Domaine Bernard Ange Crozes-Hermitage ($22): Has refined black-fruit aromas.
N.V. Pierre Peters Champagne Blanc de Blancs Cuvée Reserve ($60): Great boutique bottle.
610 First St., Napa, California; 707-224-2101 or heritageartifacts.com.