John Balagna grew up on a farm.
It wasn’t exactly a favorable experience.
“I grew up on the farm and left the farm because I hated it,” he said.
So he turned to another pursuit — working as a chemist at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Though he had turned away from the scene of his childhood, an interest in working with the land had taken root and in 1970, it began to sprout.
He bought land in San Ysidro, which is on the highway going toward Farmington.
Then in 1972, Balagna planted a vineyard.