Napa County Winery Owner Stays Behind to Continue Work Amid Fires

NAPA COUNTY -- Lutz Vineyards off Dry Creek Road is in the path of the still active Patrick Fire in Napa County.

Gene Lutz's home and vineyard were just beyond the road closures in the mandatory evacuation zone.

"We're lucky, really," Lutz said. "We're ahead of the game. There's a lot of people that aren't"

The 40-year-old vintner said he still has some work to do.

For Lutz, it was just another day; harvesting grapes is something he does every October. Except Friday, he wore a mask as the sky above him was murky.

"We're just waiting to harvest, and it's all coming together," Lutz said.

No way was he going to let Patrick ruin his pride and joy, that will later become a smooth cabernet sauvignon.

"It's just a great grape flavor," Lutz said. "You can say chocolate. You can say cherry. None of that is as good as the grape."

Lutz said he is doing the best he can through the toughest of circumstances.

"Attitude is everything," Lutz said. "You're not going to change anything. All you can do is keep your spirits up and do the best you can."