Palmaz Vineyards’ modern history dates to the late 1990s when Julio and Amalia Palmaz bought the historic Napa estate on Hagen Road, planted 64 acres of vineyards and built a modern winery. Julio Palmaz is a native Argentine who moved to the U.S. in the late 1970s to continue his medical career and to pursue what would become a highly successful venture into medical research. Based at UC Davis, he and his wife Amalia spent their weekends winetasting in Napa. They eventually found the Cedar Knoll Vineyard and Winery, a 19th-century estate founded by Henry Hagen, who was one of Napa’s pioneering winemakers. The Hagen family stopped making wine during Prohibition and never restarted. Today the estate is run Julio and Amalia Palmaz and their adult children, including son Christian Gaston Palmaz, winemaker and viticulturalist. The estate makes Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Riesling and Muscat. The 2000 vintage was the inaugural release.
Napa Valley AVA is the most famous winemaking region in the United States and one of the most prestigious in the world. With nearly 43,000 acres of vineyards and more than 300 wineries, it is the heart of fine wine production in the United States. Winemaking started in Napa in 1838 when George C. Yount planted grapes and began producing wine commercially. Other winemaking pioneers followed in the late 19th century, including the founders of Charles Krug, Schramsberg, Inglenook and Beaulieu Vineyards. An infestation of phylloxera, an insect that attacks vine roots, and the onset of Prohibition nearly wiped out the nascent Napa wine industry in the early 20th century. But by the late 1950s and early 1960s Robert Mondavi and other visionaries were producing quality wines easily distinguishable from the mass-produced jug wines made in California’s Central Valley. Napa Valley’s AVA was established in 1983, and today there are 16 sub-appellations within the Napa Valley AVA. Many grapes grow well in Napa’s Mediterranean climate, but the region is best known for Cabernet Sauvignon. Chardonnay is also very successfully cultivated, and about 30% of the AVA’s acreage is planted to white grapes, with the majority of those grapes being Chardonnay,
One of the most widely grown grape varieties, it can be found in nearly every wine growing region. A cross between Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc. It’s a hardy vine that produces a full-bodied wine with high tannins and great aging potential.