Andretti’s interest in wine was sparked after he retired from the racing circuit in 1994, and a commemorative wine was produced to pay homage to his illustrious career. He then took his interest to the next level by teaming with KMart President and CEO, Joe Antonini, to form the Andretti Wine Group. They released their first estate wine in October 2003, under the Montana label.
The winery’s 42 acre Oak Knoll vineyard is located in the heart of Napa Valley, just south of the town of Yountville. The average daily temperature is cooler than Yountville to the north, but warmer than Carneros to the south. The vineyard has fast draining soil and is mainly planted with Merlot and Chardonnay. Only the best lots from their vineyard go into their estate and reserve collection.
Robert Pepi has been at the helm of Andretti winemaking since the beginning; he even helped pick out the property. Pepi is credited with several innovations in the vineyard. He was instrumental in the development of the Geneva Double Curtain trellis system.
Andretti Winery produces three wines from their Napa Valley Estate Vineyard under the label, Montana. They include the Estate Chardonnay, Estate Merlot and Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. These wines are not available through traditional distributors; they are only sold in the tasting room.
Their Napa Valley Series includes: Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon. Some of these grapes are sourced from other vineyards in the Napa Valley AVA.
Andretti Winery does not limit their wine production to grapes grown in their vineyard. They also produce value-driven wines from AVAs outside of Napa Valley. The Andretti Selections include Chardonnay, Merlot, Zinfandel, and Cabernet Sauvignon.