The Chimney Rock wine estate began to take shape in 1980, when Hack and Stella Wilson purchased a 180 acre parcel – which included a golf course – situated on the east side of the Silverado Trail. The first 59 acres were planted with a combination of red and white grapes, and the premiere vintage of Chimney Rock wines was produced in 1989. Shortly thereafter, phylloxera necessitated the replanting of the entire property and recognizing the unique characteristics of the Stags Leap District, only red Bordeaux-variety grapes were planted – forty acres of Cabernet Sauvignon, twelve acres of Merlot, four acres of Cabernet Franc, and three acres of Petit Verdot.
All the grapes for Chimney Rock's Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux style red blends are grown on the winery's 131-acre estate at the southern end of the Stags Leap District. Chimney Rock wines are a true expression of Stags Leap District “terroir" – wines that resonate with intense flavors of cassis and blackberry. Refined and rich in color, their wines go into the bottle with the kind of balance and finely structured tannins that makes them drinkable upon release, and for many years as they age gracefully.