Robert Young

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    The story of Robert Young begins with family, and their deeply rooted connection to the land. Since 1858, six generations of the Youngs have lived and farmed this ranch in Alexander Valley. This is more than a family business, it is a way of life. One which will be passed down for generations to come. The story continues…

    Circa 1858, at age 26, Peter Young made his way to Sonoma County from New York, eyeing the California Gold Rush and eventually purchasing a ranch in Alexander Valley in 1858.

    In 1896, from local church, school boards and service organizations to state agricultural leadership, the Youngs are renowned for their community involvement.

    Circa 1912, Silas and his neighbor harvesed prunes, a highly prized fruit in the early part of the century. In the ensuing decades, the lives of everyone involved continue their individual courses. Such as in 1935, Silas dies. Sixteen-year old Robert inherits the ranch and its debt. Great Uncle Thomas Meek guarantees the bank note, allowing Robert to maintain ownership. By 1937, Robert graduates from Healdsburg High School with aspirations of becoming a “Big Farmer” (yearbook quote). In 1940, in a classic "marries highschool sweetheart" tale, Robert marries Gertrude Rotlisberger who will be known for her hospitality, generosity, and green thumb. In 1942, Robert exemplifies, “Take care of the land and the land will take care of you.”

    During the 1960s, Gertrude and Robert taught their children the values of hard work (1962), then in 1963, things get very interesting. The first to plant Cabernet Sauvignon in Alexander Valley, as well as propagate the now-famous Chardonnay Clone 17, Robert Young emerges as a leader in the California wine industry. The wonderful result that in 1997, Fred Young founded the Robert Young Estate Winery with the blessing of his father and the help of his siblings JoAnn, Susan and Jim. The four Scions live and work on the ranch, involving the next generations in the family business.

    The story continues evolving from such a remarkable history. The amazing future ahead embraces the vineyards with a strong viticultural philosophy. We believe that the best crafted wines can only be produced from superb wine grapes. The best grapes are a synergistic combination of the viticultural area in which the fruit is grown, the viticulture techniques and the terroir or unique growing conditions.

    To quote Matt Michael, Robert Young Winery winemaker, “Through good stewardship of the land, we create wines of remarkable character and quality. This concerted effort allows our grapes to express this area’s unique character authentically in the wines.” And as has always been, the story continues...

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