Tasting Wine at Stony Hill Vineyard

Barrel tasting with winemaker Mike Chelini - on the left.

Tasting wine at Stony Hill Vineyard with winemaker Mike Chelini That’s Stony Hill winemaker Mike Chelini on the left with wine blogger Mike Beltran and myself, Joe Becerra. We did some serious wine tasting, comparing barrel samples alongside wine from the current vintages. Mike Chelini has been the winemaker at Stony Hill Vineyard since 1973. … Read more

Mike Chelini is Longest tenured winemaker in the Napa Valley at Stony Hill Vineyard

Last week we toured three completely different Napa Valley mountain wineries. We visited Stony Hill Vineyard on Spring Mountain, Ladera Winery on Howell Mountain, and Nichelini Winery at the summit of Sage Canyon Road. This will be the first of three posts comparing these Napa Valley mountain wineries.

Stony Hill Vineyard on Spring Mountain is one of the oldest wineries in the Napa Valley and one steeped in tradition. Fred and Eleanor McCrea purchased the land in 1943 and released their first vintage in 1952. In 1972, young Mike Chelini began his stint as winemaker at Stony Hill and he continues in that position to this day. He loves his work, the land, and the owners. As he says “Life is good here at Stony Hill Vineyard.” When we asked Mike Chelini if he is the Valley’s longest-running winemaker, he says: “I think I am tied with Bill Sorenson over at Burgess.” Bill Sorenson began his stint at Burgess in 1972, so who knows who started first. Nevertheless, these are impressive careers for both these winemakers.

Winemaker Mike Chelini Stony Hill Vineyard
Winemaker Mike Chelini

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