Green and Red (Chiles Canyon/Napa) ORGANIC

Green & Red Vineyard, named for its red iron soils veined with green serpentine, is located in the steep hills on the east side of Napa Valley. Each time we visit, more of affable Jay Heminway’s past is revealed: he trained as a sculptor, studied in Italy as a sculptor, taught sculpture, had a gallery in San Francisco, became disenchanted, got divorced and bought a place in the Napa hills to get away from it all.
The guy who came to install his septic tank told him “you’ve got some great geology here – you should plant some vines”. It wasn’t long before Jay was off to Bordeaux to do a season at Chateau Lascombes followed by a spell with NYC wine merchants Sherry Lehmann and Alexis Lichine. He planted the vines in 1972 and started selling his wines in 1977. Now joined by his second wife he has never looked back and neither have we. Jay makes our favourite organic Zinfandels. Jay, normally very self-effacing, is proud of his high altitude vineyards, way above the fog line, up at 1,700ft, where the soils are red and rocky.