Friday, January 22, 2016



As a lifetime farmer, Jeff Gargiulo has always been passionate about the land and agricultural, and today that passion is focused on the joys of grape growing and fine wine making. 30 years ago though, he and his wife Valerie only dreamed of one day building a premier wine estate. That dream took shape in the early 1980s when Jeff and Valerie and their young family traveled to Napa Valley to visit Valerie's cousins, Barney and Belle Rhodes. Napa Valley icons, Barney and Belle Rhodes had been in the Napa Valley since the late1960s growing grapes in Rutherford at Bella Oaks Vineyard. Jeff and Valerie were inspired by their cousin’s Napa Valley lifestyle and confident that with their help and Jeff’s agricultural knowledge they would make some of the finest wines in the world. Twelve years later and with countless hours of coaching from Barney and Belle, Jeff and Valerie purchased their first vineyard in Oakville, Napa Valley, Money Road Ranch in1992. Seven years later they purchased their second Oakville property, 575 ovx.

From the beginning, the Gargiulo’s committed themselves to creating a world class Cabernet Sauvignon wine estate. From his years spent farming, Jeff Gargiulo, knew that if he didn't start with the very best land, he could never expect to grow the best grapes. For this reason, the Gargiulo's chose Oakville to establish their namesake winery. Then, like today, Oakville was considered to be amongst the preeminent places to grow Cabernet Sauvignon in the world. The very first vintage of Gargiulo Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon was 2000, and since then Gargiulo Vineyards has quietly taken its place among the most highly regarded Cabernet Sauvignon producers in Napa Valley. Not ones to rest on their laurels, Jeff, Valerie, daughter, April and the entire Gargiulo Vineyards’ team continue to strive to make Gargiulo wines the most pure and breathtaking expressions of their two esteemed Oakville vineyards.

Kristof Anderson, winemaker, has been with Gargiulo since 2004 and shares our winemaking philosophy. He favors a gentle and patient winemaking approach, 90 percent of which happens before the grapes ever leave the vine. This includes hand harvesting at dawn to ensure pristine cluster condition upon arrival at the winery; hand sorting at three different stages and taking advantage of the state of the art gravity flow winery. Incredibly, Kristof separately ferments as many as 40 individual vineyard blocks each vintage in small French oak barrels. This extensive array of fermentations offers him more components to compose the final blend, which will always be the one that most vividly expresses our distinct vineyards during a single harvest season. Our winemaking team also includes an incredible supporting cast with winemaking consultant Andy Erickson and viticulture consultant Dr. Paul Skinner.

We consider ourselves to be stewards of our two Oakville properties, Money Road Ranch and 575 ovx. Our approach to farming these magnificent vineyards is one of strict responsibility to maintain and restore their true nature. Both estate vineyards are nestled within a diverse environment and as such, benefit from the life cycle of a natural and varied landscape. Throughout the annual seasons this symbiotic relationship is recognized and nurtured.

Our two vineyards, Money Road Ranch and 575 ovx, are located in the Oakville appellation, a two-mile-wide swath of Napa Valley that extends to 600 feet in elevation up the Vaca Mountains to the east and the Mayacamas Mountains to the west. Once a steam train stop in the late 1800s, Oakville owes its name to the dense groves of native oak trees which once blanketed the area. One hundred years later, the Oakville name is synonymous with the finest winemaking in the world. Within this small district you will find the greatest concentration of Napa Valley's preeminent producers of Cabernet Sauvignon. Oakville's diverse, well-drained soils, sun-drenched summers and cool, dry falls make it a superior place to grow Cabernet Sauvignon. The wines from our two Oakville vineyards are unique, but resolutely embody the essential Oakville qualities of depth and complexity with the structural integrity to age for decades.



For over seventy years beginning in 1937 the Biale family has grown Zinfandel and a variety of produce on their farm located on the outskirts of the town of Napa. A large population of white leghorn chickens once produced a steady supply of eggs that a young Aldo Biale regularly delivered around town to customers. Most of the Zinfandel grapes were sold to Napa wineries but some grapes were reserved so Aldo could make homemade wine for family and relatives. In 1953 Aldo met his future wife Clementina while on a trip to Italy where his mother, Christina was from. Aldo and Clementina were soon married and began raising their family in Napa in 1954.

Along with the eggs and produce, a teenaged Aldo began discreetly selling his homemade wine to a few wine-loving Napans. Because his rural home phone was a “PARTY LINE” frequented by nosy eavesdroppers, enterprising Aldo used a code name whereby his customers could order wine without the risk of revealing his secret Zinfandel operation. Thus “Black Chicken” was born – the nickname for a jug of homemade wine from young Aldo’s barrels hidden in the barn.

Dave Pramuk was born and raised in Napa in a medical family. After graduation from CSU Chico and newspaper work, he began a career working in sales and public relations at Napa Valley wineries. A Founding Partner in Robert Biale Vineyards and lifelong friend of Bob Biale all the way back to grammar school, Dave is a board member of the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley and active in Appellation St. Helena, Zinfandel Advocates and Producers and Petite Sirah’s P.S. I Love You. Dave is responsible for the Biale winery’s marketing, sales, and communications.

All truly passionate winemakers dream of the day where they get an opportunity to immerse themselves in unique vineyards - and fully utilize their talents to create something really special. Some never quite make it, while others, with the passion, work ethic, and a knack for blending science and artistry, ascend to the top.

Tres Goetting is a 26 year veteran Napa Valley enologist and viticulturalist who has already made his mark and fine reputation at a few Napa Valley wineries but looks to Biale as his career moment in the spotlight.

Tres first paid his dues as a teenaged “cellar rat” in 1987.  Then, following college and armed with a razor-sharp palate, took steady steps to move up – hand-crafting wines at three touted Napa Valley grower/producers. Now he has stepped up again to find his ideal niche at Biale.

Tres first worked at a small family winery in his hometown of Napa, then went off to college to major in Agricultural Science and Forestry with minors in Environmental Ethics and Music at Cal State University at Humboldt. After college, Tres realized that, rather than the forest, Napa Valley and winemaking was where he really wanted to be and he rose from the cellar to assistant winemaker at St. Clement Vineyards in St. Helena, where he developed his keen wine sense and where he was immersed in every aspect of wine production from grapes to glass.

Tres’s most recent winemaking stint was with the highly-respected Krupp Brothers Winery/Stagecoach Vineyards and Valley of the Moon Winery’s new top tier Zinfandel program.  Tres has also produced the custom wine for the prestigious Post Ranch Inn at Big Sur.

Prior to Krupp Brothers, Tres worked in all aspects of winemaking as associate winemaker at Ladera Vineyards (2004 to 2010), where he gained career experience working with estate vineyards and closely managing his staff to transition the fruit from vine to barrel to bottle.

Tres works in harmony with Biale’s vineyards guru, Bob Biale, to co-manage and fully understand the intricacies of each of Biale’s vineyards – hands on. Unleashing the full potential and ultimate expression of each unique vineyard is the winery’s goal, which is why winemaking at Biale is such an ideal situation for Tres. He couldn’t be happier, and Bob Biale appreciates having a fellow vineyards/ “vit” guy help to size up these older and sometimes quirky Zinfandel vineyards with their dry farming, deep roots, big trunks, and sometimes - mixed varieties.

Says Tres, “I believe in minimalistic vinification  techniques in the winery. I feel that it is best to focus efforts in the vineyard to get things right so that the wines do not require a lot of attention and will ultimately speak of the vineyards from which they were grown.”

As for Zinfandel in particular, Tres has a special fascination, “I love Zinfandel because it is a mysterious varietal that never ceases to amaze,” he says.

In music circles, Tres and his family are known to be a longtime, vital part of Napa’s music scene. He is a professional bassist who plays with local winemaker bands and occasionally with high profile artists.

February 25 -27, 2016 | Zinfandel Experience - Meet the Makers
The World's Largest Single Varietal Wine Tasting Event! Meet the makers — the legends and upcoming rock stars of the Zin world. Zinfandel Experience is a three-day wine and culinary extravaganza attracting wine lovers from around the world. Experience the classic character of Zinfandel at five extraordinary events featuring a diverse selection of wines and styles. The weekend includes a 25 Year Tribute Party, Supper Club, Flights Seminar, Winemakers Auction & Dinner, and Grand Tasting. 2016 Zinfandel Experience is featuring more access to winemaker celebrities, more wineries, and two impressive new venues, showcasing the talents of winemakers, chefs, and artisanal food purveyors.

March, 7th, 2016 25th Anniversary Dinner @ James Beard House in NEW YORK, NY 
25th Anniversary dinner featuring celebrity TV chef, Chris Cosentino of Cockscomb restaurant in SF


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