This year marks winemaker Mike Chelini’s 45th harvest at Stony Hill. Chelini, who is recognized as longest-tenured winemaker in Napa Valley, will shepherd the transition to the new winemaking team under the direction of Chris Hall, COO of the Hall family’s Long Meadow Ranch. Infrastructure improvements and replanting are in the works for the estate.
Last year the McCrea’s embarked on transitioning the estate to CCOF organic certification in an effort to improve yields from the cherished old vine Chardonnay, Riesling and newer plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon. Perched above the valley floor in the Spring Mountain AVA, the estate which has 40-acres under vine has produced some of Napa Valley’s most iconic white wines.
The winery’s consistent, hallmark style relies on fermentation in neutral oak barrels and the absence of malolactic fermentation. The Chardonnay 2016 (great wine) shows marked acidity with citrus, green apple and wet stones that progresses towards rich, smoky complexity with age. Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 shows purity and intensity with red and blue fruit and a restraint that reveals an expression of place. The Riesling 2017 is vinified in stainless steel and is known for its marked typicity.