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Amid the millionaires, castles and vanity wines that spring up in Napa Valley, there remain salt-of-the-earth types who came here without pretense, with a love of the land, and the grit to conquer the rugged terrain in the name of fine wine.

The Smith brothers (Stuart and Charles) epitomize that renegade spirit of the second wave of individualists who came to Napa Valley and made something out of nothing.

Their foresight should be legendary: they listened to forebears; looked at the steep slopes of Spring Mountain and saw great wines.

One of their most sought-after productions is their riesling, and the 2014 has laser-like fruit focus with refreshing, yet deeply nuanced, complexity. This is the best riesling in Napa Valley, hands down.

Editor's Note: Catherine Bugue loves drinking and writing about wine. She may be reached at catbugue@gmail.com.

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