In 1974, Girard Winery was founded by Steve Girard on the Napa Valley floor. He produced very good wines for over two decades before selling to Leslie Rudd in 1995. The “last” Girard vintage was 1997; after this the name was changed to Rudd Estate.
But this was not the end of the Girard name, and in 2000, Pat Roney revived the label. He has been the principal owner and managing partner ever since. Roney originally made wine in rented production facilities before renovating a winery on his Pritchard Hill estate.
In addition to vinifying 18 acres of estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Girard sources Cabernet Franc, Zinfandel, and Petite Verdot from small grape growers in Napa Valley. The Petite Sirah is purchased from Ray and Barbara Davies’ Calistoga vineyard. Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc are bought from Carpy Field just north of St Helena.
Additionally Girard produces an Old Vine Zinfandel from Harris Blue Ridge Vineyard at an elevation of 2,700 feet. The winery also buys Chardonnay from Dutton Ranch Vineyard in the Russian River Valley AVA.
Winemaker Marco DiGiulio graduated from UC Davis in 1985. He has also worked and consulted for several other excellent wineries including Pine Ridge, Atlas Peak Vineyards, Robert Pepi, Lokoya, and Pezzi King. Roney and DiGiulio are both perfectionists and make a very good team. Girard currently produces a little over 10,000 cases of wine a year.