B-21 Top Recommendation
The late, great Roy Raymond, a San Fran native, landed in Napa Valley in 1933. Taking a job in the cellars of Beringer, Raymond met Martha Jane – owner Otto Beringer's daughter – and the two were married. As owners of Beringer, the Raymonds produced many of California's greatest Cabernets for decades, selling the winery in 1971. Roy Raymond launched his own label soon after, purchasing 90 acres south of St Helena off the old Zinfandel Lane, his first crush in 1974. For 35 years Roy and his sons produced award winning Cabernets, Roy finding the time in his hectic schedule to serve two terms as president of the Napa Valley Vintners Association. In 1987, Roy was named "Napa Valley Living Legend" for his contributions to the California wine trade, and at his funeral in 1998 at the age of 83, the state's biggest names payed him their respects. Joe Heitz and Robert Mondavi (among many others) recognized Roy as one of the grand old men of the industry. Today, Raymond Vineyards is stronger than ever, Roy's passion living on through the work of Jean-Charles Boisset, whose family purchased the estate in 2009. It's nice to see Roy's legacy in such good hands.