In 1980, the family acquired land in the hills east of Rutherford in the Napa Valley. They were farmers first, and farmers they remain. In 1995 they decided on the strength of the fruit to make wine under their own label. The following year the family produced the first vintage of zinfandel, and along the way we have added cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, petite sirah, and the occasional dessert wine.
In 2010 the Brown family celebrated thirty years in the Napa Valley and Brown Estate's fifteenth crush. Over the years the farming philosophy has not changed: Our fifty acres of vineyards are planted amidst 450 acres of roughneck wilderness that they strive to tend rather than tame – from the occasional inconvenient honeybee hive in the winery to the prickly star thistles in the vineyards that are a part of their ecosystem.