In 1980, Dr Bassett and Marcella Brown purchased a 450 acre ranch in the Chiles Valley, a sub AVA of the Napa Valley on the eastern side of the Vaca Mountains. Their son, David, described the purchase as a way for the family to raise their children in a bucolic setting away from the troubles of living in larger cities. In 1985, they cleared 9 acres of land and began planting Zinfandel with later plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. With David farming the vineyards, they quickly gained a reputation for growing high quality fruit, selling grapes to Mike Grgich, among others. They began producing their own wines in the 1990s and became Napa Valley's first African American owned winery.