What’s the best deal you’ve ever gotten? The kind where you get something for a steal and see it appreciate as much as tenfold or more? Whatever it was, it wasn’t as good as the luck Jack Tognetti had when he purchased Los Carneros farmland in the 1960s. This Napa Valley region was largely overlooked because of its colder temperatures, but it turns out the forsaken land was actually perfect for something — growing chardonnay and pinot noir grapes. So for more than 30 years Tognetti grew and sold grapes to an array of fine wineries from his Aloise Francisco Vineyard, until 2012, when his son Robert founded the Tognetti Family Winery on-site. The family has started making a chardonnay that’s produced on a limited basis each year and is releasing its first Napa cabernet in 2016. And with winemaker Keith Hock on board, a sparkling blanc de blanc is also in the works. tognettiwines.com
This article originally appeared in Marin Magazine’s print edition with the headline: “Owner to Maker”.