Long Meadow Ranch is a large working estate with properties in Napa Valley, Anderson Valley and West Marin. Owned and operated by the Hall family since 1989, 650 acres of the estate is in the foothills of the Mayacamas Mountains. That property was once a historic working ranch given to a US Civil War veteran by Ulysses S. Grant. After falling into disrepair in the late 20th century, Ted and Laddie Hall bought the property and raised their sons on the ranch, turning it into a working, multi-faceted farm/ranch/wine estate. Long Meadow Ranch has more than 150 acres of vineyards in Napa and Anderson Valleys. The estate also includes olive groves, fruit and vegetable orchards and livestock operations where, among other animals, Highland cattle are raised. The estate is completely organic and practices sustainable farming. Long Meadow Ranch produces several terroir-specific wine labels,
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,
The Merlot grape is such a deep blue that it is named for the blackbird. It’s an early ripening grape and one of the primary varietals used In Bordeaux. Merlot is also grown in the "International style," which is harvested later to bring out more tannins and body.