Newton Vineyard

  • The single square mile of hillside pioneered by the Newtons in 1977 is an impressive site, with expansive vistas of Napa Valley and beyond.

    The terraced mountain estate has less than one-fifth of its total 560 acres planted to vines at elevations ranging from 500 to 1,600 feet above sea level. The non-farmed acreage remains in its native forested state providing natural habitat for indigenous wildlife.

    Each of the distinctive vineyard blocks is planted to a specific Bordeaux variety with an emphasis on Cabernet Sauvignon.
    These parcels reflect distinct soil types, sun exposures and individual microclimates. The blocks are fermented separately to contribute complexity to the final blended wine. The blocks are set among the native vegetation to preserve the ecosystem of the hillside.

    The dominant feature of this remarkable site appears at the vineyard’s highest point where a single tree crowns the ridge line. This lone pine, over 100 feet tall and visible from many points in Napa Valley, is called Pino Solo. An enduring icon, Pino Solo appears on the label of Newton wines, a mark designating singular wines created from a singular passion.
    The winery was designed and built to blend into the mountain and includes elements of the founders’ native lands interwoven with the California environment — roses, a pagoda, a Chinese red gate, lanterns, a London phone booth and English gardens.

    [Link to this Entry]

  • Grapes for Newton wines come from its 560 acres of estate vineyards. The estate site located at 1600 feet on the eastern slopes of Spring Mountain. This is a premium location because the peak of the mountain shields most of vineyards from the hottest rays of the afternoon sun and the high elevation helps maintain lower average temperatures. This way, the vines receive all the sunlight they need, with long exposure to the cooler morning sun, without the baking effect or heat stress that can affect fruit on the valley floor.

    Newton Vineyard's raison d'être is terroir. This French word refers to the complex interplay of a specific site’s geography, geology and climate in the making of wine--especially soil structure and exposure to sun.

    Newton's vineyards are planted in deep volcanic, free-draining soils. The estate vineyard is planted with Bordeaux varieties: Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Merlot thrives in rocky soil mixed with clay beneath the surface, while Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot do best in well-drained, poor soil. Cabernet Sauvignon sees greatest success in stony loam. The mountainous slopes of the vineyards have each of these soils and a full range of exposures. Hillside vineyards may be difficult to cultivate and very labor intensive, but the reward is richly flavored fruit.

    Chardonnay, however, thrives in cool regions with chalky or loamy soils. To make its excellent Chardonnay, Newton owns an old vineyard in Carneros and also has long-term contracts for fruit from several hillside vineyards nearby. Newton Unfiltered Chardonnay, introduced in 1990, was one of the first unfiltered wines produced and sold in California, now regarded as an industry benchmark.

    [Link to this Entry]

  • Newton’s sustainable practices consider the entire ecosystem, vines, animals, other plant species, soil life and type in order to minimize pests and diseases and foster a healthy symbiotic relationship between our vines and the environment. Avoiding commonly practiced short-term solutions, Newton adopts a long-term sustainable and balanced approach.

    Napa Green
    The Napa Green Certified Land and Winery program is a third-party certified, voluntary program Newton participates in to express its dedication to working in harmony with nature. As part of the Certified Winery program, Newton meets a host of requirements, including water conservation, energy conservation, pollution prevention, and solid waste reduction elements. Our certification relies on comprehensive analysis of our operations, which we adhere to with complete commitment.

    Working within the Certified Land program, includes restoration of wildlife habitat, healthy riparian environments and more in concert with sustainable agriculture practices. We also restore, protect and enhance the regional watershed. The program includes not only farmed or vineyard land, but also non-farmed and wild land, roadways, stream banks, drainages, and more within a specific property.

    Natural Water Irrigation
    Newton’s system of ponds captures and stores winter rains for use in summer irrigation, limiting the need to pump water from the Valley’s aquifer and reducing the amount of energy needed for irrigation. The ponds also act as natural silt dams to prevent soil erosion from entering nearby streams and the Napa River, preserving the native habitat and fishery.

    Cover Cropping
    A cover crop is planted in the vineyard rows to reduce soil erosion and enhance vineyard soil fertility and structure. Newton plants a seed mix designed for the extreme mountain conditions. The cover crop recipe varies with the vineyard’s age and includes native grasses and clovers such as Fescues, Rye, Oats, Strawberry Clover and Purple Vetch. Cover crop act as a “net” to hold insects. Cover crops also improve soil structure and health by enhancing the organic matter content, soil structure and soil microbial fauna.

    Each Newton harvest yields pomace of grape skins, stems and seeds which is collected and composted to be used later in the vineyards as a natural fertilizer and soil builder. All glass, cardboard and plastic waste generated on the property is recycled.

    Green Design
    An early model of green design, the winery was built to be 80 percent underground. An elaborate cave system, spanning three vertical levels and five avenues, is used for maturing Newton’s wines in barrel. This cave design creates a natural temperature control system, an early commitment by Newton to responsible energy use. A rooftop parterre garden, planted to herbs and roses, provides insulation for the Chardonnay fermentation room located beneath by maintaining cool temperatures, enhancing humidity when necessary and reducing energy requirements.

    [Link to this Entry]

  • Newton’s “Nature by Design” philosophy is present throughout the winemaking process. The winery was custom designed to allow minimal handling of the fruit, from the use of gravity flow systems to separate batch fermenting. Newton wines are naturally fermented using indigenous yeast to preserve the natural fruit essence achieved in the vineyard. The subtle variances of each component, when blended together, contribute to the overall complexity of the finished wine.

    Newton wines mature in French oak barrels in caves tunneled into the hillside which offer an ideal environment for aging while blending in with the natural surroundings. This meticulous method of crafting of wines in harmony with nature is labor-intensive, yet produces some of the world’s finest wines. Newton wines offer intense purity of fruit and have the unique ability to be enjoyable on release or after decades of careful cellaring.

    [Link to this Entry]

  • Want to learn more about the wines of Newton Vineyards?
    Visit their website at to learn about their exceptional collection of wines.

    [Link to this Entry]