Judy considered her role in establishing Groth Vineyards & Winery in 1982 to be her most important professional achievement. After acquiring 121 acres in Oakville, California, in 1981, Dennis and Judy Groth set about to found a winery. Judy played the lead role in setting up Groth. Because of her personal interest in art and architecture, she was the inspiration behind the decision for California Mission to set the style for the building. She worked long and hard with Robert Gianelli in Napa to design the building. She met frequently with Sebastian Titus to design our original label, which featured the building and property. She represented the Groths at the original Planning Commission meeting that granted the couple their winery use permit. And throughout the years, Judy participated in all important tastings at which the characteristic style of Groth wines was set. A beautiful, graceful and elegant person, she insisted Groth wines be beautiful, elegant and graceful. She also worked diligently, along with Dennis, to assure that Groth Vineyards & Winery remain successful, private and entirely family owned.
Judy was born in Oklahoma in 1942 but moved with her family to California when she was 3. She met Dennis in kindergarten in Sunnyvale, California. They met again when Dennis attended Sunnyvale High School and Judy attended Buchser High School in Santa Clara. They became high school sweethearts and married in 1961. Growing up in Santa Clara Valley, Dennis and Judy saw the agricultural community change from cherries, apricots and prunes to become Silicon Valley. They visited wine country many times before choosing to buy land in Oakville. Having seen the changes in Santa Clara Valley, Dennis and Judy vowed to work to keep Napa Valley healthy as a place to grow fine wines.
Judy and Dennis were married for 60 years and spent 40 of those years building and growing Groth Vineyards & Winery. Judith Mae Groth passed peacefully on Saturday morning, May 8, 2021, at her home surrounded by her family. It was her wish to be at her home on her Oakville estate with her family, whom she dearly loved and of which she was extremely proud.
Judy is survived by her husband, Dennis Groth; her daughter, Suzanne Groth Jones; and her son, D. Andrew Groth. She is also survived by her son-in-law, Kimball Jones; and her four grandchildren, Jackson Groth Jones, Genevieve Groth Jones, D. Nicholas Groth, and Alexandra Groth.
Donations may be made to Collabria Hospice of Napa Valley or to your local hospice.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Judith Mae Groth, please visit our floral store.