Mary's search for the perfect vineyard to call her own began in 1996, as she juggled a busy dental practice and four young kids at home. Three years later, she found the now-named Grigsby Vineyard, located in the Yountville Appellation of the Napa Valley. Soon thereafter, she purchased and planted the Collinetta Vineyard, in the Coombsville Appellation, just east of downtown Napa.
We have chosen to farm both of our vineyards organically and sustainably, not only because it leads to the most natural expression of the vines that produce our fruit, but because we take our role as caretakers of the land we farm very seriously. The use of pesticides and herbicides can disturb the delicate ecosystem that we depend on, year after year, to produce the grapes for our wine, and can leach into the water table. We will continue to farm in as responsible a manner as we are able, caring for our land and providing those who enjoy our wines with the highest quality end-product as possible.
Under the guidance of our Vineyard Manager Sergio Melgoza, our winemaking and viticulture team can often be found among the vines, checking in with the grapes throughout the growing season to ensure they are doing all that they can as a team to produce intensely flavored, balanced wines that express the personality of the land that bears them.
The Grigsby Vineyard
The 21-acre Grigsby Vineyard is ideally located between the warmer up-valley climes and the cooling maritime influence of the San Francisco Bay to the south, on the benchland of the Vaca Mountains. Temperatures during the long growing season are warm enough to produce perfectly ripe and flavorful fruit, with cool evening winds that ensure finesse and balance.
Mostly Cabernet Sauvignon, the Grigsby vineyard is also home to 1 acre of Merlot grapes, and about 2.5 acres of Syrah. Shortly after purchasing the vineyard in 1999, we planted new rows of vines between those already standing, essentially doubling the production of the vineyard. Today, we hold about 1/3 of our fruit for ourselves, selling the rest to other wineries throughout the Napa Valley. For 2009, our total case production was 2,200 across a portfolio of six wines. That output is expected to increase to 5,000 cases by 2019.
The Collinetta Vineyard
Our Collinetta Vineyard is located in the Coombsville area of Napa, the newest sub-appellation in the Valley. Collinetta is Italian for “little hill,” and reflects the small knoll rising from the center of the property, which gives the vines a 360-degree orientation to the sun.
When we purchased the vineyard, it was home to a few pastured horses and a long-standing stone chimney, the only remnant of a building that burned down on the property long ago. Located only minutes down the road from the Grigsby-Rocca family home, we had passed the site countless times, and knew we had to keep the chimney, a local landmark, standing when we planted our vines.
We planted the vineyard with two clones of Cabernet Sauvignon, clone 4 and clone 337, to add more complexity to the Cabernets we were already producing at our Grigsby Vineyard. An additional acre of Cabernet Franc and half an acre of Petit Verdot ensured we would have the varietals we needed to produce the Bordeaux-style red blends we love.
The climate here is cooler than the Grigsby Vineyard, but its sun-drenched hillside exposure and shallow, rocky soil make it well suited to growing Bordeaux varieties. In a cooler growing season, we harvest both vineyards at around the same time. In a “normal” growing season, however, the Collinetta Vineyard is harvested around two weeks later than the Yountville Vineyard.