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 winemaking. 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, Valerie and their young family traveled to Napa Valley to visit Valerie’s cousins and Napa Valley icons, Barney and Belle Rhodes. Napa Valley icons, Barney and Belle Rhodes had been in the Napa Valley since the late 1960s 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 in 1992, which they named Money Road Ranch. Seven years later they purchased their second Oakville property, 575 ovx.
Kristof Anderson, winemaker, has been with Gargiulo since 2004 and shares the same 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 the distinct vineyards during a single harvest season. The winemaking team also includes an incredible supporting cast with winemaking consultant Andy Erickson and viticulture consultant Dr. Paul Skinner.