It is tempting to think of Stony Hill Vineyard as this lovely flower growing on the flank of Napa Valley’s Spring Mountain, a flower that has miraculously flourished, largely unchanged, since it was planted in 1952.
Such unchanging longevity is not a routine occurrence. While Napa Valley may be a great place to grow wine grapes, the climate has not been so kind to the people who turn them into wine. During the half-century-plus that Stony Hill has been producing wine, dozens of other wineries across the valley have flourished briefly only to quickly perish. Even among the family-owned wineries that have not been sold to corporations or taken public, only Nichelini and Charles Krug have longer tenures.