Jacob Beringer arrives in California and becomes Cellar Foreman for Charles Krug, one of the first commercial winemakers in Napa Valley. Krug's business was right next to the property that would become Beringer winery.
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Jacob and his brother Frederick purchase 215 acres in St. Helena for $14,500. This parcel of land, known first as Los Hermanos (The Brothers), will become the heart of the Beringer estate.
The Beringer Brothers oversee their first harvest and their first crush. With Jacob serving as Winemaker and Frederick as financier, the brothers made approximately 40,000 gallons of wine, or 18,000 cases that first year.
The first two floors of Old Stone Winery are completed, and Chinese workers begin digging 1,200 linear feet of tunnel where the wine will be aged and stored.
The brothers plant the Elm trees that now form a verdant tunnel along Main Street, which runs in front of the winery in St. Helena
Beringer wines win their first awards at the Mechanics Institute Exposition in San Francisco, just the first of many accolades over the years
Frederick Beringer passes away, leaving Jacob Beringer sole proprietor of the Beringer winery.
Jacob Beringer passes away, and the winery comes under the care of Charles and Bertha Beringer, two of Jacob's children.
1920 - 1933
The winery continues to operate through Prohibition under a federal license that allows wine to be made for religious purposes, so Beringer could sell sacramental wine to churches.
Prohibition is repealed and Beringer becomes the first winery to offer public tours, sparking wine tourism in Napa Valley.
During the Golden Gate Exposition on Treasure Island in San Francisco, Winemaker Fred Abruzzini distributes flyers and maps showing "the main highways to Beringer Bros. Winery and other interesting points...," further establishing Napa Valley as a tourist destination.
Hollywood stars, like Carole Lombard and Clark Gable, visit the winery, and Beringer sells 40,000 cases of wine a year throughout the decade, which was a respectable figure for the time.
The 91-year-old Beringer Winery is named a State Historical Landmark.
Myron Nightingale joins Beringer as just the fifth winemaker in the winery's nearly 100-year history. He developed a special French Sauterne–style wine called, aptly, Nightingale, which is still made and bottled at the winery today.
The Rhine House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Ed Sbragia joins Beringer as Myron Nightingale's assistant. Together they launch the Private Reserve designation using specifically selected Cabernet and Chardonnay grapes.
Beringer begins fermenting Chardonnay and Cabernet in French oak barrels.
Bob Steinhauer becomes vineyard manager, and he and Ed begin what will become a legendary partnership. "Bob always says he gives me diamonds," Ed says, "and it's up to me to polish them."
Ed Sbragia is promoted to Winemaker, becoming only the sixth person to hold the position in Beringer's history.
Beringer commissions a fountain celebrating the first grapes planted in Napa Valley 150 years earlier. Sculpted by Ruth Asawa, it stands in the courtyard behind the Rhine House.
Beringer becomes the first winery to develop a formal research and sensory evaluation program. Today, more than 250 employees participate in research and sensory trials.
Wine Spectator names the Beringer 1986 Cabernet Sauvignon #1 Wine of the Year
Wine Spectator names the Beringer 1994 Chardonnay #1 Wine of the Year. Not only is it the first time a white wine has garnered this coveted award, but Beringer now has the distinction of being the first and only winery to have both a white and a red wine named #1 Wine of the Year.
Beringer pledges a gift of $1,000,000 to COPIA, the American Center for Wine, Food and the Arts in Napa.
Laurie Hook is promoted to Winemaker of Beringer Vineyards. Ed Sbragia stays on as Winemaster Emeritus.
Beringer's 125th anniversary, making it the oldest continuously operating winery in Napa Valley.
Maximus, the world's largest bottle of wine, is certified by the Guinness Book of World Records. The bottle, which contained 173 bottles of Beringer 2001 Private Reserve Cabernet, sold for $47,500 at a charity auction.
Beringer expands into Central Coast; Wine Spectator names the Beringer 2009 Knights Valley Reserve #8 Wine of the Year