Saturday, April 4, 2015

Lost in the Stillness at Mont La Salle

A place of serene calm in the valley, far from the usual crowd of visitors and tourists, and an idyllic stop while going sideways in Napa...

Mont La Salle's imposing presence high above the hills of Napa remains one of the most memorable sights I have of the valley. The beautiful Spanish Romanesque and California Mission architectural style of the chapel and other structures in the property provide a dramatic backdrop to the vineyards, as low-lying clouds sweep over the hills, draping it in an elegant early morning veil. 

In the serene courtyard, the sound of falling leaves in autumn rustle in the stillness of Mont La Salle, a perfect spot for both introspection and reflection after a long drive. Home to the De La Salle Christian Brothers of the San Francisco District, one of six districts in the United States, Mont La Salle (or Mount La Salle) is also home for retiring brothers from around the world. During my visit some years back, it was heartwarming to know that some Christian Brothers who served long years in the Philippines now reside in Mont La Salle. After a few rounds of wine tasting along the famed valley, it's aways a good idea to stop at a place of calm, and get lost in the stillness of the place. 

The expansive property includes vineyards and ponds, covered in autumn mist for one of most memorable sights at Napa Valley. The vineyards at Mont La Salle have been used for some of the best wines produced in Napa Valley, including wines for Mont La Salle's previous label, Christian Brothers, and with the current line under the Mont La Salle Altar Wine label.  

Today, the vineyards of Mont La Salle continue to produce grapes for notable wineries in Napa Valley, including the Hess Collection, located right beside Mont La Salle. 

Recharged from the short stop at Mont La Salle, and you're just about ready for the long drive back. Sometimes all you need is some time off, a chance to reconnect with your faith, and get lost in the stillness of a calm and serene sanctuary. 

Mont La Salle Christian Brothers Retreat & Conference center is located at 4401 Redwood Road, Napa, California.

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