First constructed as the Larkmead Winery in 1884, the building was refinished with native sandstone from the nearby hills in 1906 and still stands tall today. The massive stone edifice is considered an archetype of California’s wine country; it appears on the National Register of Historical Places and is listed as a Point of Historical Interest in the state of California. Rich Frank purchased the historic Larkmead Vineyards in 1992 with Long time friend Koerner Rombauer. In 2007, Rich Frank and Connie Frank purchased Koerner’s partnership share and assumed total control of Frank Family Vineyards. Rich and Connie focus their energies on making superb still wines.
Appellation America(2003 Vintage) Frank Family Vineyards with its main facility at the old Kornell Champagne Cellars on Larkmead Lane south of Calistoga and on Highway 29 north of Yountville has quite a pedigree. Without vineyards of its own, Frank Family is co-owned by Napa Valley veteran Koerner Rombauer, he of Rombauer Vineyards, and Rich Frank, he a relatively new arrival to the valley. The latter is a Hollywood mogul turned agent. Frank, who used to be the president of Disney and Paramount TV divisions, and headed up Comcast, now leads a talent agency among whose clients are Leonardo DiCaprio, Terri Hatcher, Cameron Diaz, read more...Benicio del Toro and Geena Davis. Hatcher and Davis have been auctioned off if you will, as part of Frank’s last two lots in Auction Napa Valley. Actually, the winning bidders received walk-on parts in “Desperate Housewives,” and the ill-fated “Commander in Chief,” which stars Hatcher and Davis, respectively. Both made appearances of their own at the last two Napa events. Frank and Rombauer, however, leave the winemaking to Todd Graff, who fashioned this Zinfandel into a very stylish wine that is smooth and somewhat unctuous and alluring - not unlike some of Frank’s Tinseltown stars. But in the end, this Zin is well-balanced with soft tannins. The listed alcohol percentage is high - 15.2 - but it’s what one would expect from a Napa Valley Zin, but the heat is tempered because the alcohol is fairly well integrated. The wine spent 15 months in 35 percent new French oak and the remainder in once- and twice-filled barrels. There were 2,100 cases bottled and they’re going fast. (hide)