Cris Cherry was a restaurateur in Paso Robles, whose Villa Creek restaurant was renowned for the quality and depth of its wine list. Every year during the Hospices du Rhône, Villa Creek was the place to go for dinner. His fascination with the great wines of the world led Cris, with his wife, JoAnn, to purchase some grapes in 2001 to make a wine for the restaurant, and over the following years winemaking became their main interest.
The Cherrys closed the restaurant in 2017 to devote all their energy and resources to the winery and its estate vineyard in the hills west of Paso Robles, in the famed Templeton Gap. Here, limestone-rich soils and cooling marine winds make for a great viticultural zone, particularly renowned for Rhône varietals. The Cherrys source grapes that are certified Demeter Biodynamic, CCOF organic, or sustainably farmed, in unique and challenging sites. The west hills of Paso Robles are home to 90% of the grapes they purchase. Per-acre leases ensure that their grapes are harvested from the same special blocks each vintage—these contracts also allow them to influence certain farming practices, such as how many clusters will hang on each vine and when to pick.