Larry Stone, renowned master sommelier and former general manager of Napa’s Rubicon Estate Vineyard and Winery, will join Evening Land Vineyards as president, the company has announced.
“Larry’s rich background and experience make him uniquely suited to lead our enterprise and pursue our vision that terroir is all about the vineyard, winery and table,” said Mark Tarlov, CEO and founder of Evening Land Vineyard. “We know Larry will take us to new levels in the industry.”
Stone’s appointment signals a major strategic step forward for Evening Land, a growing producer of estate and regional wines with vineyards in a number of acclaimed terroirs, including the Sonoma Coast and the Santa Rita Hills in California, the Eola Hills of the Willamette Valley in Oregon, and Burgundy’s Cote d’Or.
“Larry Stone is one of the most respected professionals in the wine business and we are thrilled to bring his expertise as a producer, manager and restaurateur to Evening Land,” said Tarlov. “We will be looking for Larry to help expand our footprint as a business, rounding out the varieties of wines we produce and opening up additional channels for our products in the retail and restaurant trades. I don’t know of a person with a better palate or commitment to making a high quality product.”
Noted Stone: “I look forward to working with some of the best vineyards in Oregon, Sonoma, the Central Coast, and Burgundy. ELV has cultivated a very close working relationship with some of the top restaurants and sommeliers in the United States, many of whom are long-time friends. I am positive that this company will continue to grow with this groundwork already laid, and that I will be able to make a significant contribution to that growth.”
Stone brings with him a wealth of wine knowledge. Most recently, he was general manager of Rubicon Estate and a two-time recipient of the James Beard Award for Outstanding Wine Service. An English-certified Master Sommelier, Stone passed the examination on his first attempt. He was elected to the board of directors of the Court of Master Sommeliers in 2004 and became a trustee of the James Beard Foundation in 2005. He is the only American to earn the title of MaÃ®tre Sommelier from the Union de la Sommelerie FranÃ§aise.
His wine-buying and management expertise brought acclaim to the wine programs at the Four Seasons Olympic, Ritz-Carlton and 900 North Michigan hotels, Charlie Trotter’s restaurant, and finally Rubicon restaurant, which was an iconic destination in San Francisco for 15 years.
Stone will remain located in Napa Valley, making frequent trips to the various vineyard regions on the West Coast.