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Antonio Marco Abruzzo | 1985 - 2021

Antonio Marco Abruzzo

February 26, 1985 – August 15, 2021

Son, husband, friend, winemaker

Antonio Marco Abruzzo, “Tony,” was a talented and well-loved winemaker in the Napa Valley who will be greatly missed by his large Italian family, his many friends and by his colleagues throughout the region. At the time of his death, Tony was the winemaker for Stone’s Throw Vineyards, which thanks to his prodigious talents received numerous accolades from both The Wine Advocate and The Wine Spectator over the last decade.

Tony grew up in St. Helena, the son of prominent winemaker Antonio Abruzzo Sr., who in addition to creating his own wines, helped to launch several well-known labels in the Diamond Mountain AVA. Both of Tony’s grandfathers had been in the wine industry, owning and managing vineyard ranches north of Calistoga. Vitaculture and winemaking flowed deeply in Tony’s blood.

Tony attended school in St. Helena, graduating from St. Helena High School in 2003. He then went on to study vitaculture, enology and winemaking at U.C. Davis. As Tony attended Davis, he continued to work with his father and became an integral part of the community of vintners on Diamond Mountain. These experiences greatly influenced his style and combined with the skills learned at Davis resulted in his being a well-rounded and nuanced winemaker early in his twenties. Those skills did not go unnoticed, and garnered him jobs at Escapade, Sonata and Clarington right out of school.

In 2013, Tony met his life partner Arturo Salizar, who at the time was a hospitality professional at the Rose & Vine Resort in Calistoga. The two settled down in Calistoga and became renowned for their extravagant vineyard dinners, bringing in celebrity chefs from around the world. In 2015, Tony and Arturo were married in Tuscany and in 2017 adopted their daughter Olivia. With the arrival of this beautiful child came immense changes to their careers. Both men shifted their focus to family, gravitating toward a simpler lifestyle that kept them close to home. To this end, they combined their considerable talents towards launching a new winery on their property: Stone’s Throw Vineyards. Having more time together in this common venture and being there for their dear Olivia turned out, in retrospect, to be a most precious gift, especially with Tony’s passing at such an early age.

Thankfully, Tony’s illness was brief and in his final weeks he was blessed to be surrounded by family and friends. As he lay in St. Helena Hospital, looking out onto beautiful scenery, he was visited daily by his sweet Olivia and dear partner, Arturo. Tony passed peacefully in his sleep on August 15, 2021.

Tony was preceded in death by both his mother, Hilda and father Tony and is survived by his partner Arturo and daughter Olivia, as well as by his siblings Oscar, Francisco and Isabella. Tony will also be greatly missed by his many friends and colleagues.

It was Tony’s dying wish that donations be made in his name to Olé Health Foundation. Tony believed in supporting the valley's migrant workers and felt this was the best way to take care of those in need in his community. We would encourage these donations in lieu of flowers for his Celebration of Life.

Tony’s Celebration of Life service will be held at the Bale Grist Mill at 3369 St. Helena Hwy., St. Helena, CA on September 15, 2021 at 4:30 p.m. Please contact Sarah Finney at (415) 715-4396 if you plan to attend. We request that to protect our community, only those who are vaccinated and able to wear protective masks attend this service.

For those coming from out-of-town, we are recommending rooms at the Harvest Inn or at the El Bonita Hotel. There will be a memorial brunch at 10:00 a.m. on September 16, 2021 at Tre Posti. Please contact Sara Finney if you wish to attend: (415) 715-4396.

1 comment

1 Comment

Oct 03, 2021

We love you Marco. You are greatly missed.

Stephanie and George

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