Grasso Vineyard is owned by Frank and Fran Grasso. They own a 3-acre vineyard which lies in the shadow of Mt. George located north East of the town of Napa in an area known as Coombsville. They have owned and managed this vineyard since 1989 originally selling the fruit to a high end winery located in the Stag’s Leap district of Napa Valley. Frank has been a home winemaker for a number of years and also started a local viticulture association. More recently when their growing contract ended, the Grasso’s were handed an opportunity to use their estate’s fruit for making their own commercial wine.
Their small vineyard is planted entirely to Cabernet Sauvignon, clone 7 (a popular clone known for high quality fruit).
Frank conducts all the vineyard management himself from the trellising system, to pruning to thinning. The vineyard has its own unique terroir; it is rocky with alluvial deposits formed from ancient river channels. Interestingly some of the nearby vineyards do not have this rocky type soil. These types of alluvial rock-rich soils are ideal for producing complex red wines with very concentrated fruit flavors.
Also of note is the vineyards’ geographical location. It is in a fairly cool climate area but because they are surrounded by the mountains near Mt. George they receive fairly warm afternoon breezes in the summer. This somewhat mitigates the areas relatively close proximity to the cooler San Pablo Bay. Their wine is 100% varietal and estate grown. Grasso’s first vintage was 2005 and as of press time is their current release. Jay Buoncristiani is the winemaker who also does the wine making for his own Buoncristiani Family label. He uses a barrel program of new French and Hungarian oak.
Their 2005 vintage is a very dark wine which really opens up the longer you let it sit in the glass. The black cherry aromas move to the palate as concentrated flavors which also contains hints of vanilla and mocha. A slight smokiness with touches of oak and cedar continue through to the long finish. This is a very elegant wine which is meant to pair well with food.
Also note the stylish label which was designed by Frank’s niece. As of press time the best place to purchase this wine is from their website.
NOTE: this review has been identified as needing a major update.
Thomas J Grasso says
How can I go about ordering products?
Maria Martinucci says
We live on Rollingwood Ct around the corner from your house. This morning on our walk, we had a conversation with a nice gentleman who identified himself as the Father in Law. After we made a comment on your Ahhhh vino plate, he told us you own a winery in Napa. Is it open to the public?
The last I heard Frank and Fran lived over in Coombsville. Rollingwood Court isn’t far from Alston Park on the west side of 29, not the east side. Sure you aren’t referring to Grassi winery? Off of Soda Canyon Road which we have also visited – their property and vineyard. Last I heard they were going to be building a winery – but maybe have been slowed by the Atlas Peak fires in 2017? I was on the Ellman property lat year looking over at the Grassi Vineyard – didn’t see any signs of a new winery. But if anyone can comment let us know here and we will revisit with Cassandra Grassi. Or if GRASSO Winery is still producing, let us know and we will update this review. Their website has been down for years and can find no signs of any current releases. Cheers.