Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

Tasting notes, varietals, grapes - anything related to wine
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Drew Goin
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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#201 Post by Drew Goin » December 11th, 2018, 11:46 pm

ENZ1.jpg
"Enz Vineyard" - from WINC Blog

WINC Wine Club Blog
"Enz Vineyard Delivers a Taste of History"
by Brooke Matthias
August 22, 2018


"'Enz Vineyard' is home to some of the oldest vines in California, dating back to 1887 when they were planted by original homesteaders and were discovered by the Enz family in 1967. Today, these vines are dry farmed and the picturesque vineyard location is tucked away in the valley in a sheltered basin, surrounded by mountains and blocking it from the rest of civilization...."



CalWineries
"Enz Vineyards


"In 1967, the Enz Family moved to a 300 acre ranch in the Lime Kiln wine region. There was a very old 15 acre vineyard on the property. These vines were planted by the original homesteaders in 1887...."


Historic Vineyard Society "Enz Vineyard" Profile


AnyPlaceAmerica: "Enz Vineyard" Map


Reddit: Wine, "Final Day for Picking for Harvest 2018 'Enz'" by Dirty & Rowdy

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#202 Post by Drew Goin » December 12th, 2018, 5:20 am

The following is a rather doom-and gloom portrait of the transformation of the rich, fertile Santa Clara Valley from an agricultural mecca into a land populated by cookie-cutter residential neighborhoods and commercial development:

Downie01.jpg
"Sixteen cities of roofed boxes and concrete strips wrapped around each other with no sense of community or vestige of natural beauty" - from Leonard Downie, Jr., Article

The Alicia Patterson Foundation website
"The Santa Clara Valley’s 'Appointment with Destiny'"
by Leonard Downie, Jr.
October, 1971


"...'The land in the valley was of the very highest quality,' as Karl Belser, a discouraged former county planner, has described it in a retrospective analysis written after he resigned his post. 'Two alluvial fans had been laid down over the millennia by systems of streams which had coursed from the mountains to the sea during the rainy season, flooding the lowlands almost every year. Topsoil of fine loam thirty to forty feet deep in places overlaid water-bearing substrata of gravels and clays. A. tremendous underground water storage basin with a capacity of roughly one million acre-feet spread itself out beneath this wonderful soil. In many places the water gushed forth from artesian wells. Here was nature’s handsome gift: soils second to none in the state and perhaps the world, indigenous water enough, if properly used, to serve that soil adequately, and a mild climate with a year-round growing season.'..."

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#203 Post by Drew Goin » December 19th, 2018, 4:14 am


I performed a Google search for the "Enz Vineyard Lime Kiln Valley" to see just how many wineries are working with the fruit from this old-vine site. It seems like the "Enz Vineyard" is becoming a hot spot for the cool kids. In fact, Birichino is now bottling a vineyard-designated 2017 Mourvedre.


So, after rediscovering the above 1987 article, highlighting the Enz Family winery and vineyard, why are a red and a white Zinfandel, a Pinot St George, a DRY Orange Muscat, and even Chardonnay and Sauv Blanc among the wines once bottled by the Enz Family, but no Mourvedre?

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#204 Post by Drew Goin » December 19th, 2018, 1:32 pm

Apologies if I have posted this link before...



SF Chronicle
"California Riesling’s Popularity, and Quality, Return"
by Esther Mobley
September 28, 2016


"...Like California Riesling at large, the 'Wirz Vineyard' is underappreciated, misunderstood. Its half-century-old Riesling vines are own-rooted, head-trained, dry farmed; some of them sit directly on the San Andreas Fault. Says Pat Wirz: 'The Cienega Valley doesn’t get a lot of press, but I think it’s one of the best places for growing grapes in California.'

"...Large, value-oriented companies found huge success with Riesling, including Pacific Rim, whose founder Randall Grahm bought the entirety of the 'Wirz Vineyard' crop for 16 years. After Grahm sold Pacific Rim, Wirz’s main client was the mega-conglomerate Diageo, and then Constellation. By 2011, both had lost interest in Wirz’s Riesling and moved on to another aromatic white — Moscato.

“'That’s when I started selling to the little guys,' Wirz says. First, he sold grapes to the excellent Santa Cruz Mountains producers Big Basin and Thomas Fogarty. Quality-focused wineries like Bedrock, Precedent, Stirm, Ser and Waxwing have since followed, all bottling vineyard designates. There is a waiting list for Wirz’s fruit...."


gallery_medium.jpg
"Jesus Morales picks increasingly popular Riesling grapes at Wirz Vineyard in San Benito County" - Photo: Michael Short, The Chronicle

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#205 Post by Drew Goin » December 29th, 2018, 7:38 pm

Comanche Cellars produces several wines from Monterey, Calaveras, Mendocino, Santa Clara, and San Benito Counties:



"...Siletto Ranch:

"...the Siletto family vineyards send roots deep into the calcarious soils of San Benito.

"These unique limestone soils and warm Mediterranean climate make a ideal site for growing Viognier, a grape traditionally grown in the northern Rhône River Valley in southern France. Wine industry veteran Ron Siletto planted the vineyard in the late eighties, and continues to farm the vineyard sustainably today. The wines express a unique allspice character and a flinty minerality on the finish, lending a site specific expression from vintage to vintage."




Comanche Cellars - Wines

c2791fe4-6681-477d-bdd5-39ca1ec5650d-Large.png
Comanche Cellars "Dog & Pony" Tres Piños Garnacha label

Comanche Cellars website:
https://www.comanchecellars.com
412 Alvarado Street
​Downtown Monterey
(831)-747-2244

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#206 Post by Drew Goin » December 30th, 2018, 7:55 am

Mr Ian Brand* of I. Brand & Family, Le P'tit Paysan, La Marea, etc, is the featured guest on this episode of Cru podcast:



"How to Produce Compelling Wines with Ian Brand"

IanBrandNC007+(1).jpg
"Ian Brand is the owner & winemaker of I. Brand & Family, La Marea, and Le P’Tit Paysan wines based in Salinas, California." - photo from Cru Podcast


"...Our guest this week did not set out to make the beautiful wines he does. He, and is incredible team, discovered great vineyards at the edge of sensible farming and decided to bring them to light.

"The farther they looked, the more they found – remote, challenging vineyards, with hard depleted soils, and intense sunlight tempered only by the coastal breeze. Vineyards capable of producing only the most idiosyncratic wines. Their goal as winemakers is to lightly polish the roughest edges and leave the idiosyncrasy intact. It is here in the back country, filled with individual character, where wines like I. Brand & Family, La Marea, and Le P’tit Paysan comes to life...."




Cru Podcast episode:
https://www.crupodcast.com/show/ianbrand


* "Congrats to Ian Brand..."

Mr Brand was awarded SF Chronicle "Winemaker of the Year"!


SF Chronicle
"2018 Winemaker of the Year: As California Wine Grows Increasingly Bifurcated, Winemaker Ian Brand Shows It’s Still Possible to Make Distinctive Wines of Place for Under $25"
by Esther Mobley


"...Like many California winemakers today, Brand is drawn to the idea of what California wines were like in a bygone era.

"...For some winemakers, pursuing this old-California ideal is simply a matter of picking their grapes a little earlier. Brand goes deeper. For him, it’s about helping to keep the only true conduits of the past — older vineyards — in the ground. It’s not a matter of following a trend. It’s heeding an imperative.

"One such vineyard is called 'Enz', a remarkable mountainside collection of head-trained, 120-year-old vines including curiosities like Cabernet Pfeffer in Hollister’s Lime Kiln Valley. After years of selling most of its grapes to Kenneth Volk Winery, 'Enz’s' star has deservedly been rising as winemakers like Brand, Tegan Passalacqua and Hardy Wallace have bottled its Mourvedre — 'Mataro,' if you want to be old-fashioned about it.

"In an unusual arrangement, Brand has become a kind of ambassador for the vineyard, helping the Enz family put their grapes in the hands of ambitious wineries from the North Bay like Broc, None Such and Newfound. Wouldn’t Brand rather just keep more of the fruit for himself, to make more of his excellent (and it is really excellent) Mourvedre? He shrugs.

“'This vineyard is the crown jewel of this area,' he says. 'It needs to be seen.'..."

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#207 Post by Drew Goin » December 31st, 2018, 8:51 pm

The number of vineyards in the Santa Clara Valley is hard to ascertain. Most of the searches I have performed related to this topic result in lists of the wineries found around the county.

To complicate things, the websites for many producers do not include any definitive facts about their fruit sources, be they located on a winery's estate or otherwise.

While perusing the internet for "Santa Clara Mourvèdre", I managed to discover a new project and the name of a specific growing site.



Margins Wine

"2017 'Santa Clara Valley' Mourvèdre
(71 cases produced)


IMG_2804.jpg
Margins 2017 "Santa Clara" Mourvèdre - bottle shot from Margins Wine website

"A last minute addition to the harvest menu last fall, this beautiful wine will hopefully be part of the Margins family for many years to come. My first attempt (ever!) at Mourvèdre has surprised me with its diverse set of characteristics which have continually evolved to include red and black fruits, chocolate, forest, herbs, and even tropical fruit."

From the 2018 Mourvedre data sheet:

"...Ed Sattler planted his backyard vineyard in 2009 and has been intimately involved in farming it since the beginning. This hot, dry site in the foothills of the southern Santa Cruz Mountains--but not high enough in elevation to be considered part of the SCM AVA-- has an intense diurnal swing, bringing cool temperatures every evening and lending to the preservation of acidity in the grapes...".


Margins Wine website:
https://www.marginswine.com


Food & Wine Aesthetics
September 9, 2018
"Margins Wine: In Search of Difference"

Raw Wine: Profile of Margins Wine


The label for the Margins "Santa Clara Valley" Mourvèdre states that the grapes came from the "Sattler Vineyard". Fernwood Cellars has offered a Mourvèdre from the same site in the past.

According to The VinGard webpage's details on the Margins Mourvèdre in its overview of the 2018 Wine Fare:

"...Vineyard: 'Sattler’s Vineyard', the backyard of Sattler Family in San Martin.

Farming: Organic, dry farmed...."


Here is my email Q&A with Ms. Megan Bell on the "Mourvèdre Appreciation" thread: link.

At the moment, I have no other information about the "Sattler's Vineyard"...
Last edited by Drew Goin on October 8th, 2019, 10:09 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#208 Post by Drew Goin » January 4th, 2019, 12:26 pm

One of the newer wineries sourcing fruit from the "Enz Vineyard" in the Lime Kiln Valley is Penville Wine. Here is an interview with Patton Penhallegon, whose day-job is Dragonette Cellars, from The Wine Write blog:


enz mourvedre.jpg
"Enz Vineyard Mourvedre" - from The Wine Write

The Wine Write
"A Visit With Patton Penhallegon of Penville Wine"
December 10, 2018


"...I'm now working with a fantastic vineyard called 'Enz'. It is just south of Hollister, about forty-five miles east of Monterey. It's about a three hour drive north for me. It's an incredible spot. The vineyard was planted in 1850 by the family that still owns it. They went out there during the Gold Rush. They didn't find gold, but they did find granite and limestone. The family still has an operable granite quarry. There was a saloon on the property. The vines were planted with the thought of selling the wine in that roadhouse.

"The vineyard is all own-rooted. It was replanted in about 1920. There are some California heritage varieties planted. I'm going after Mourvedre, but there's also Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Muscat, and a lot of other fun things grown there. My getting this fruit also has a Stolpman connection. Pete Stolpman knew Ian Brand. Ian manages 'Enz Vineyard'. When a buyer dropped off the 'Enz' list, I took his place. I'm in good company. Tegan Passalacqua, the winemaker at Turley, has a personal project called Sandlands. He's making a single vineyard Mourvedre from 'Enz' for that label. Rajat Parr gets fruit for one of his projects from 'Enz', too. It's a special place."




Penville Wine website:
http://www.penvillewine.com/

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#209 Post by Drew Goin » January 5th, 2019, 5:56 pm

In a search for "San Benito Carignan", I stumbled across an +8-year-old article about the Fortino Winery...


San Benito dot com
"Fortino Winery: Fine Wine and Good Times"
by Bev Stenehjem / Hollister Free Lance
May 9, 2013


"Voted best winery in Gilroy for three consecutive years, Fortino Winery is one of the most beloved wineries in Santa Clara Valley. Fortino Winery has been in business since 1970 when Ernest and Marie Fortino bought an existing vineyard on Hecker Pass in Gilroy. Bringing winemaking traditions from their hometown of Calabria, Italy, Ernest and Marie built a reputation for quality wines and, in 1978, established one of the very first wine clubs in California.

"...Gino told me that when his parents started the winery, it was one of only 240 bonded wineries in all of California (presently there are 3,400). He grew up helping out in the vineyard, 'doing whatever needed to get done.' In 1995, his parents were ready to pass the torch of their well-established business to the next generation – and so Gino and his sister, Teri, took over.

"...Gino also made the switch from aging wine in big tanks to smaller barrels in order to reduce oxidation and improve flavors. He prefers to use older oak barrels that impart less oak and vanilla flavors than new barrels.


0b904d621d6f4a5d59b3472fe71fb505.jpg
"Gino Fortino is one of the owners of Fortino Winery" - from SanBenito.com article

“...Fortino Winery has a total of 50 planted acres, which include Estate Merlot, Cabernet, Carignan, Charbono, Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Noir.

"...Out of 80 acres of Charbono vines in all of California, Gino has three of them. The grapes produce a dry, full-bodied wine – similar to a Barbera – that goes well with a juicy steak...."




Fortino Winery website:
https://fortinowinery.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#210 Post by Drew Goin » January 5th, 2019, 9:24 pm

Author Bev Stenehjem's book Wineries of Santa Clara Valley is only one example of her dedication to the preservation and promotion of the region's growers and producers. It is so easy to find articles she has written in the newspapers of the area, I have to wonder if, perhaps, she is the top expert on the valley's historic producers.



Arcadia Publishing: Wineries of Santa Clara Valley by Bev Stenehjem


South Valley Author Profile: Bev Stenehjem


San Benito.com Author Profile: Bev Stenehjem



I wrote an email to Ms Stenehjem in December of 2017, asking for information on the Mourvèdre vineyards of the Santa Clara AVA. Here is a response from her:


"...I'm glad you found my article - I have been writing about our local wineries for the last 7 years - promoting them in our local newspapers and local magazines.

"I also wrote a historical photo book, The Wineries of Santa Clara Valley - which you may want to get a hold of. I spent time researching the oldest wineries and their families in Santa Clara County. My book has some good information about which varietals were/are planted in our valley.

"You may want to talk to Gene and George Guglielmo - brothers who own the oldest, continuously owned/operated family winery in Santa Clara Valley (they are Chapter 1 of my book!). Gene and George are extremely knowledgable about the history of our wine industry. The other person who is very knowledgeable about our history would be Gino Fortino - the owner/winemaker at Fortino Winery (Fortino Winery also has a chapter in my book!).

"Warm regards,
Bev Stenehjem
Freelance Writer/Author"

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#211 Post by Drew Goin » January 7th, 2019, 4:42 am

Thanks to Randy Smith for alerting me to the recent interview with Ian Brand on The Wine Write blog:



The Wine Write blog
"Our Chat With Monterey Winemaker Ian Brand"
by Randy Smith
December 31, 2018


"...The Wine Write: 'One of the things you're known for is finding some unique vineyards.'

"Ian: 'Sure. I think I may come at it from a different direction than a lot of people. It isn't that I'm some overly passionate about a specific varietal. I'm a problem solver. I want to work with what's here and then extend that out to what I do. I had been working for Big Basin making big, oaky red wines for four years. I got two vintages in at Monterey and realized that model wasn't working here.

"'Rather than fight uphill, I decided to learn what would work here. I began to tailor the style of wine I make to the raw material. You run into problems in the winery when you try to over-amplify things or make the grape into something it's not. I don't want to try to make mediocre fruit off a young vine into a ninety-five point wine. Or try to make a lean, mineral driven wine from big, ripe fruit. That's when you run into issues.

"'When I matched my winemaking to the fruit, that's when the wines made from these unsung vineyards started clicking. All of the work I do is in about a fifty mile radius of Salinas. It's a concise area. It's also a place nearly no one else is focusing on. I was in the right place in the right time. The price of fruit here is more affordable. I don't understand from a business standpoint how you can pay as much as you do for fruit on the North Coast and still function. I'm in a nice scene to work with high quality, lesser known vineyards. No one else is in here with the precise focus I have. The people I sometimes overlap with are good friends.'

"...The Wine Write: 'Who were some of these farmers selling fruit to before you came along?'

"Ian: 'It varies. "Enz Vineyard" was leased to Ken Volk for years and years. That's a guy who doesn't get enough credit for doing work with unsung grapes while no one was paying attention. He was really ahead of his time in terms of what he was looking for in vineyards.'

"...The Wine Write: 'How involved do you get in the farming for your fruit?'

"Ian: 'I'm intimately involved in a couple of vineyards. I consult with the farming in those. In a vineyard like "Enz", I'm dealing with Russell Enz, who grew up on the property. I'm not going to farm it with more touch than him. I might ask him to pull a few more shoots or something along those lines...little tweaks here and there.

"'It's a long process of gaining trust with your farmers. Another bullsh*t thing some winemakers do is to come from wherever they've been and think they know all kinds of stuff. They may walk into a vineyard and demand this or that. That's a recipe for a short-term relationship.

"'I have vineyards in various states of positioning. Some are bookmarks. I'm not ready to make leaps there yet. I may know that vineyard's potential. I may even have an idea of how that fruit fits in our brands. It takes awhile to learn a vineyard. I don't want to decide in year two that I want the grower to do specific stuff. They may be doing certain cultivation practices because they know there are tremendous swings in vintages. Just because I see something one vintage doesn't mean the next vintage won't swing back the other way. After I've been there five or six vintages, I get a real sense about the vineyard. It's important to have restraint. Otherwise you lose the trust of the growers and the owners....'


ian brand.jpg
Ian Brand - from "The Wine Write"

http://www.lppwines.com/

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#212 Post by Ian Brand » January 7th, 2019, 5:29 pm

I'm a problem solver.

Thanks for posting this, Drew.
ITB - Le P'tit Paysan, La Marea, I. Brand & Family
Salinas, CA

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#213 Post by Drew Goin » January 7th, 2019, 6:31 pm

Thanks, Ian.

I really dug the way you expressed ideas so concisely in this interview!

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#214 Post by Drew Goin » January 12th, 2019, 12:28 pm

The following article is from 2013, but the content is still worth reading:



SanBenito.com
"100-Year-Old Winery Continues with 3rd Owner"
by Bev Stenehjem
June 13, 2013


"Morgan Hill Cellars is the oldest winery in our region and celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. The winery was founded in 1913 by an Italian immigrant named Camillo Colombano who planted Barbera root stock brought over from Italy. From 1945 to 2006, the Pedrizzetti family owned and operated the winery. Changing hands for the third time in 2006, it is now owned by Mike and Maryclaire Sampognaro.

"...The Pedrizzetti property was 10 acres with two homes ready to move into. Although there were no longer any grapevines, the property included a winery complete with a grape crusher, 350,000 gallon capacity holding tanks and a 1,000 case-per-day bottling line. And best of all, there were experienced winemakers who wanted to stay.

"...When asked for recommendations, Maryclaire advises wedding planners to serve the Chardonnay and Zinfandel, both crowd pleasers...."


4d7a2878b62be72e1d20e6ea029931ef.jpg
"The owners of Morgan Hill Cellars, Maryclaire and Mike Sampognaro" - from San Benito article


Morgan Hill Cellars website:
http://www.morganhillcellars.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#215 Post by Drew Goin » January 12th, 2019, 9:11 pm

The purchase of the Blossom Hill Winery from Treasury Wine Estates by Delicato Family Winery in 2017 did not draw much attention from the press, nor here on the WB forum. This is not hard to understand, as the fruit is inevitably going to be blended away, as it has for some years, into anonymous "Central Coast" appellation bargain wines.

Here's the skinny from the original Delicato press release...


dt.common.streams.StreamServer.jpeg
Satellite image of the Alba Coast Winery - from North Bay Business Journal article

"FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

"Delicato Family Vineyards Announces Acquisition of Paicines Winery

"NAPA, Calif. (April 5, 2017) – Delicato Family Vineyards (Delicato) today announced it has acquired the Central Coast California Blossom Hill Winery from Treasury Wine Estates. The acquisition is part of Delicato's ongoing premiumization and growth strategy on the heels of the recent announcement of its strategic investment in Sonoma's luxury portfolio of brands, V2 Wine Group. The winery, which will now be called Alba Coast Winery, is located in the warm Paicines AVA in San Benito County and has a long history of premium winemaking. The terms of the transaction will remain confidential.

“The name Alba means 'dawn' or 'sunrise' in Italian and reflects a 'new dawn' for the pioneering winery, which was established during early Central Coast wine and vineyard development,' noted Delicato President and CEO Chris Indelicato. 'My grandfather started with a single winery almost 100 years ago and as we continue to grow our business and expand our luxury portfolio, taking steps to ensure quality winemaking will remain our top priority.'

"The Alba Coast Winery provides Delicato with an additional 4 million cases of growth capacity. The acquisition does not include any brands but will be used to support the growth of Delicato’s premium and ultra-premium wines from the Monterey and Central Coast regions such as Noble Vines, Gnarly Head, Z. Alexander Brown, Diora and Irony. The winery will also support two of the company's premier Central Coast vineyards in the San Bernabe AVA and Santa Lucia Highlands as well as a number of grower partners."


Benito Link article

North Bay Business Journal article

The Beverage Journal article

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Alba Coast Winery - from North Bay Business Journal article

The Alba Coast/Blossom Hill Winery and its vineyards stand where the original Almadén facility operated for decades in the Paicines area of San Benito County. According to an article in Wines & Vines, "The Alba Coast Winery provides Delicato with an additional 20,000 to 30,000 tons of capacity, or production of up to 4 million cases."

The original vines are long-gone, excepting (perhaps) a portion of the vineyard that now is owned by either Donati or Pinnacles.

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#216 Post by Karl K » January 12th, 2019, 10:07 pm

Drew you are the man

Keep up the good work!
K a z a k s

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#217 Post by Drew Goin » January 13th, 2019, 7:22 am

It has been confirmed!!! [cheers.gif]

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Sky Vineyards 2017 "Wirz Vineyard" Riesling

According to the website of Mt Veeder's legendary Sky Vineyards:


"2017 Sky Vineyards Riesling from 'Wirz Vineyard' in the Cienega Valley. Aged in stainless steel, 12.5% alcohol, 31 cases produced."


Sky Vineyards website:
http://www.skyvineyards.com/sky/

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#218 Post by Drew Goin » January 14th, 2019, 1:07 pm

8c24628v.jpg
"San Benito County, California. Foothills used for cattle and sheep grazing" - Russell Lee, 1942


Library of Congress Maps from the 19th Century:


"Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Hollister, San Benito County, California"(Part 1)
Sanborn Map Company
August, 1886


"Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Hollister, San Benito County, California" (Part 2)
Sanborn Map Company
August, 1886


"Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Hollister, San Benito County, California"
Sanborn Map Company
May, 1892


"Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Tres Pinos, San Benito County, California"
Sanborn Map Company
February, 1888


"Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Tres Pinos, San Benito County, California"
Sanborn Map Company
May, 1892


"Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Tres Pinos, San Benito County, California"
Sanborn Map Company
April, 1895

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Drew Goin
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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#219 Post by Drew Goin » January 14th, 2019, 10:38 pm

This article covers some of the area history and the lands under cultivation in Santa Clara Valley...



Morgan Hill Life
"Take a Hike . . . with Mike Monroe – Learn About the Region’s Viticulture History with Talk at Solis Winery"
by Mike Monroe
August 24, 2018


"...We have such a rich history, too much to convey in one short column. So I decided initially to focus my attention on the Hecker Pass corridor and the Uvas Valley, and yet there were still too many compelling stories that I really feel should be remembered. Now my hope is that more vineyard tales will be forthcoming in the months ahead. For the first narrative then, I chose the opening pages of the Solis Winery because it has several behind the scenes twists and turns which I thought would be fun to highlight.

"...Much of Hecker Pass from Santa Teresa westward is a part of the original Solis land grant. Rancho Las Uvas and Rancho de Solis touch each other near the intersection of Day/Uvas Roads with Watsonville Road. The original hand-drawn map of Rancho de Solis, called a 'diseno,' shows the original 'casa' located about where Kirigin Cellars is today. The map identifies the first residence as belonging to the 'el solicitante' or the applicant — the Castro family utilizing the Solis structure, perhaps made of adobe or redwood.

"Shortly after the Gold Rush of 1849, John Hicks Adams, later the Sheriff for Santa Clara County, acquired much of Rancho de Solis and began to sell off parcels to the new arrivals. It is here we must recognize the investigative work of Ernest P. Peninou (1916-2002) who compiled, but never fully published, a history of California’s viticultural districts including those in Santa Clara County. He noted that the 'first winery of any size near Gilroy was operated by Charles Francois, an Alsatian who arrived in the Rancho de Solis area in 1868 near the intersection of Redwood Retreat and Watsonville Roads. In the early 1880s, two English relatives, by the last name of Hague, bought some 50 acres near the intersection of Day and Watsonville roads setting out a wide variety of grapes and naming the vineyard "the Solis." In 1889, they saw the need for a new and larger winery than any yet built in the vicinity. A cooperative was formed with other local growers and they organized the Solis Winery and Fruit Company. The winery was constructed above the vineyard, which sloped up from the road by tunneling into the hillside to provide storage cellars of even temperature.' This vineyard was later purchased by the Bonesio family (now Kirigin Cellars)."

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#220 Post by Drew Goin » January 14th, 2019, 10:55 pm

According to the bio from Morgan Hill Life:

"Mike Monroe coordinates local discovery outings to great places like wineries, parks, museums in the Valley of Heart’s Delight. Visit thevalleyofheartsdelight.org"




Morgan Hill Life
"Take a Hike … with Mike Monroe – Learn About the History of Hecker Pass Winery on Saturday Stroll"
by Mike Monroe
October 18, 2018


"...The Mossi and Scalmanini families held the [Solis Winery & Fruit] ranch until the late 1960s when portions of the property were subdivided. At one time the ranch exceeded more than 250 acres and extended across both sides of Watsonville Road, encompassing land near the borders of where today’s Sycamore Creek and Dorcich Family Vineyard are located. The Solis Winery name lay dormant until the Vanni family chose it for their winery property in 1989...."



Morgan Hill Life
"Take a Hike … with Mike Monroe: Explore One of the Last Remaining Orchards in the Valley of Hearts Delight"
by Mike Monroe
November 16, 2018



Morgan Hill Life
"Take a Hike . . . with Mike Monroe: Swap stories of Italian foods, recipes and tour Hecker Pass Winery"
by Mike Monroe
January 13, 2019
Last edited by Drew Goin on January 26th, 2019, 2:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#221 Post by Drew Goin » January 16th, 2019, 3:42 am

I stated in a previous post on this thread that I would investigate more about John P. Ohrwall. I found his name in a history of the Cienega Valley...



Old and Sold
A View of California Wines & Wineries: "Santa Clara-Santa Cruz - Notable Wineries By District And Region: San Benito - Valliant Vineyards, Hollister"
1955


"...The story of the Cienega, or Grass, Valley vineyards was quite different. In rqo8* Professor Bioletti, the great viticulturist and enologist of the University of California, interested Dr. Harold Ohrwall, a San Francisco physician, in developing an experimental vineyard in this area, considered exceptionally well suited to the production of fine table wines. Bioletti's association with the enterprise lasted only a couple of years, but the Ohrwall family operated the winery and vineyards continuously until their acquisition, in 1944, by W. A. Taylor & Company and the Hiram Walker interests. Dr. Ohrwall's son, John P. Ohrwall, a graduate of the University of California, who has been associated with the Cienega Valley property all his life, is now the manager for both vineyard ranches...."


* The error is as found in the site's text. I do not know what year was intended.



A View of California Wines & Wineries: "Santa Clara-Santa Cruz - Notable Wineries By District And Region"

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#222 Post by Drew Goin » January 19th, 2019, 2:59 pm

The cluster of vineyards along Redwood Retreat Road, just West of Gilroy, in Santa Clara County has been a source of mystery for me. Which plot belongs to who, and what varieties are grown there? How old are the vines? What wineries bottle fruit from which vineyards?

This article from Morgan Hill Life's "Hike with Mike" series provides a little bit of background on the cul-de-sac.




Morgan Hill Life
"Hike with Mike: Robert Louis Stevenson’s Literary Connections to South County"
by Mike Monroe / Robert Airoldi
February13, 2015



The late Claudia Salewske wrote a couple of books on the history of Gilroy. The older book is almost impossible to track down, but her contribution to the Images of America series of books is not:


Images of America: Gilroy
by Claudia Salewske
"Redwood Retreat" text search results

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#223 Post by Drew Goin » January 25th, 2019, 2:30 am

I would like to thank Mr Bradley Brown of Big Basin Vineyards for sending me the following...



"...We had been splitting the 'Wirz' Carignane with River Run from 2011 (I think) to 2016 when River Run decided to pack up shop. I had told Pat that I wanted it all if it ever became available, and sure enough he offered it to me. Since the beginning, it has been a key component of our 'Homestead' blend which includes Mourvedre from the old 'Graff Family Vineyard' in Chalone, and Syrah and Grenache from 'Coastview', our estate, and sometimes 'Chalone'. Now that we are getting more, it plays a central role in this wine which has been getting great reviews and amazing BTG placements at fine restaurants. We are also now using about half picked earlier and whole cluster pressed for our Provençale-style dry Rosé which also includes smaller amounts of Grenache and Mourvedre. And we are just about to bottle our first 100% 'Wirz Vineyard' Carignan from the 2017 vintage! While we might not do this every year, it is fun to see how it works.

"One more note, I sourced some of the 'Wirz' Riesling for one of Mark Bright's projects that we make for him. I am not sure of the label it will go under, but likely will be Saison...."


big-basin-vineyards-homestead-red-central-coast-usa-10743534.jpg
Big Basin "Homestead" - from Wine-Searcher.com

Big Basin Vineyards website:
https://www.bigbasinvineyards.com


Vimeo: "Big Basin Vineyards"


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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#224 Post by Drew Goin » February 3rd, 2019, 6:42 am

I confess that I have not given sufficient attention to the Pinot Noir wines (and vineyards) of Santa Clara & San Benito Counties, specifically Calera.

08_26-32.jpg
Map location of Calera Wine Company - from The Prince of Pinot website

Calera Wine Company:
https://www.calerawine.com
11300 Cienega Road
Hollister, CA 95023


Here are three links from The PinotFile related to Pinot Noir:

"Calera: Pinot Grows Where Limestone Flows"
September 2, 2007

"Iconic Calera Wine Company: 32 Vintages of Estate Pinot Noir"
November 24, 2010

Mt-Harlan-Vineyards-MAP.jpg
Calera's Mt Harlan Vineyards - from Calera Wine Company website

The PinotFile: "Vineyards by Appellation"

Appellation: Cienega Valley (California)
"Eden Rift"

Appellation: Mt. Harlan
"Calera"
"de Villiers"
"Jensen"
"Mills"
"Reed"
"Ryan"

Appellation: San Benito County (CA Central Coast (south of SF Bay))
"Flint"
"Gemelli"

Appellation: Santa Clara Valley (California)
"Dellamaggiore"
"Dwarf Oak"

Region: CA Central Coast (south of SF Bay)
"Vista Verde"


The Prince of Pinot /The PinotFile website:
http://www.princeofpinot.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#225 Post by Drew Goin » February 4th, 2019, 2:05 pm

Mr Randy Smith recently interviewed Nicole Walsh of Bonny Doon Vineyard and Ser Winery. [cheers.gif]



The Wine Write blog
"A Chat With Nicole Walsh of Ser Winery"
by Randy Smith
January 28, 2019


"...The Wine Write: 'What is the significance of your label's name?'

"Nicole: '"Ser" is a Spanish word meaning to express identity or origin. I had read an article when I was trying to figure out what my concept was going to be and what I would name the brand. I didn't really know what I was doing. I needed direction. Andrew Jefford wrote a story called "Wine and Astonishment". I read that a couple of times and had an epiphany moment. What he said was exactly how I felt about wine. I want to focus on a single varietal, vineyard designated wine that is made as naturally as possible. The goal would be to express a place for that vintage.'

28870724_2045086959082857_6682034106390843574_n.jpg
Nicole Walsh of Ser Winery - from The Wine Write blog

"...The Wine Write: 'How do you find the vineyards you want to use?'

"Nicole: 'Because of my history with grower relations at Bonny Doon I had made a lot of contacts with vineyard owners all over the place. In the days where we made "Big House Red" and "Big House White", I was really all over the map. I learned a lot and met a lot of people. I started to understand who was growing what and at what quality levels.

"'My first thought for Ser was Pat Wirz and "Wirz Vineyard" in the Cienega Valley. I had worked with him for quite awhile. I knew he had old vines. He farmed organically and dry-farmed the vineyard. It's a cool climate. All that intrigued me. It was gold, something special you don't find everywhere. I started with Pat.'


..."The Wine Write: We've often heard that Pinot Noir reflects where it's grown very well. Do you find that with the other varietals you make?'

"Nicole: Definitely. Chardonnay is also an amazing translator of site. It really expresses where it is grown. I am working with a pretty rare grape called Cabernet Pfeffer. There are only a handful of growers in the area that have it. I've noticed huge differences in the way those wines come out. Pat Wirz introduced me to this variety. He told me that it was a cross of Cabernet Sauvignon and Trousseau that came over here in the late 1800s. DNA testing later revealed it's a totally separate variety with no relationship to Cabernet Sauvignon. It has distinct white pepper qualities. It's a cool grape that does a good job of reflecting site.'


"[The Wine Write:] There are a number of fascinating wine stories in the Santa Cruz and Monterey regions. We hope to tell more about these sometimes unsung areas in future posts. We should all guard against thinking that California 'wine country' is restricted to Napa and Sonoma. Real wine made by real people happens all over The Golden State...."



Ser Winery bottles a Cabernet Pfeffer and two [Riesling wines (one sparkling, one still) from the "Wirz Vineyard" in the Cienega Valley.


Ser Winery website:
http://www.serwinery.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#226 Post by Drew Goin » February 7th, 2019, 6:32 am

The Sandlands 2019 offering went online on February 7, 2019. This is the third release of Tegan Passalacqua's Mourvèdre/Mataro from the "Enz Vineyard".

Mataro 17 SBC Ft_jpeg_TTB (002).jpg
Sandlands 2017 "Enz Vineyard" Mataro - from Sandlands website

"2017 Mataro – San Benito County – Enz Vineyard – 3 barrels produced.

"Planted in 1923 in a mix of granite and limestone-rich soils, this head-trained, basket-pruned, dry-farmed, own rooted vineyard is one of California’s treasures of viniculture. Crushed blackberries, graphite,fresh plum, chalky mouthwatering tannin. 13.8% alc."



Sandlands website:
https://www.sandlandsvineyards.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#227 Post by Drew Goin » February 14th, 2019, 7:19 pm

One San Benito County winery that offers a unique roster of beverages is Casa de Fruta, located in Hollister.


Benito Link
"Fruit Wines: A Crowd Pleaser At Casa De Fruta"
by Becky Bonner
January 20, 2018


"What started as a family owned fruit stand hoping to reach a customer base for locals and people traveling over Pacheco Pass in the 1940s, has now turned in to a popular destination on the edge of San Benito County called Casa De Fruta. Owned and operated by the Zanger family, wine production started in the 1960s with their tasting counter opening in 1969. Of the wines being produced today, Casa De Fruta’s fruit wines are the most popular. 'We’re known for our fruit wines. Our fruit wines are one hundred percent the juice of the fruit,' Max Sparrer, a wine steward at Casa De Fruta, said.

"...Apricot, Pomegranate, Santa Rosa Plum, Raspberry, and Blackberry are some of the fruit wines they produce. All wines according to Sparrer contain twelve percent alcohol and can be consumed as is or can be used to enrich a cooking recipe...."


IMAG3871.jpg
Image from Benito Link article

Casa de Fruta also offers wines made from the vinifera species of grapes.

› Cabernet Sauvignon "Pacheco Pass Vineyard"
› California "Brut Champagne"
› Chardonnay "Cienega Valley"
› Chardonnay "Santa Clara Valley"
› Merlot "Central Coast" (Santa Cruz Mountains)
› Merlot "Santa Clara Valley"
› Orange Muscat "California"
› Pinot Grigio "Monterey County"
› "Sole of the Boot Aprigliano" (California Zinfandel, Central Coast Merlot, with a little Syrah & Cab Franc)
› "Sole of the Boot Aprigliano" (Cienega Valley old-vine Zinfandel with a little Syrah, Cabernet Franc and 3 hardly known old-vine reds)
› "Sole of the Boot" (Santa Clara Valley: 60% Merlot, 20% Zinfandel, 20% Sangiovese)
› White Riesling (50-year-old vines, Cienega Valley just south of Hollister)
› Zinfandel (70-year-old vines, Cienega Valley)


Casa de Fruta website:
https://www.casadefruta.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#228 Post by Drew Goin » February 14th, 2019, 7:46 pm

Here are several Benito Link articles (2018-19) exploring the geology of San Benito County by retired Earth Science teacher Mr Jim Ostdick:


"San Benito Geology: The Great San Benito Shakeout"

"San Benito Geology: Living on the Edge"

"San Benito Geology: All Your Faults"

"San Benito Geology: Earthquake 101"

New Temblor Fault Map.png
Faultline Map from Temblor.com - Benito Link article

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#229 Post by Drew Goin » February 18th, 2019, 7:13 am

passport-2018-22222.jpg
Santa Clara Valley Passport Weekend

Santa Clara Valley Wines
Spring 2019 Passport

"Wine Taste in 32 Tasting Rooms with the Wineries of Santa Clara Valley"

Ticket Link: click here


Wineries of Santa Clara Valley homepage:
http://www.santaclarawines.com/index.html

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#230 Post by Drew Goin » February 19th, 2019, 12:50 pm

Drew Goin wrote:
February 14th, 2018, 6:39 am
I recently received an email from Mr Phil Gregory, whose "Vineyard Under the Mountain" site on Redwood Retreat Road in Santa Clara County is currently on offer from Bedrock Wine Company:

"Drew,

"I’m grateful to have received your email. And yes we are excited and joyful about Morgan’s announcement (Bedrock’s announcement).

"Our family bought Under the Mountain in early 2013 (renamed of course by our family). Seth (my son and copied on this email) has made a tremendous effort to 'recover' the remaining vineyard, all of which was either poorly cared for or, in some instances, returning to forest.

"To answer your question our vineyard contains blocks of mostly Zinfandel, Carignane, and Petite Sirah, Within those blocks we have several varietals interspersed such as Grenache and Alicante Bouschet. We even have a scattered handful of old white vines we have not been able to identify.

"Additionally, Seth is taking back a small block from the forest (which requires taking out trees, brush, and digging out stumps. All by hand). That particular block is Muscat and Palomino.

"In total the vineyard covers about 15 acres with much of it surrounded by forest. In our opinion, it’s a beautiful setting. Additionally, the weather/climate is absolutely affected by Mount Madonna which is just west of the property. And makes the Redwood Retreat area entirely unique within the larger Santa Clara Valley appellation. Hence the name of the vineyard.

"In order to further your work, we would love to show you the property and discuss both the vineyard and the larger surrounding area. Additionally, we have involved ourselves in quite a lot of investigation into the history of both our property and the surrounding area (with a view towards creating an Under the Mountain website) and would love to compare notes and knowledge with you."

* EDIT *

I wanted to add the two Bedrock Wine Company release notes for the "Under the Mountain" Heritage Wine.



"2016 'Under the Mountain' Heritage Wine, Santa Clara County:

"Believe it or not, Santa Clara county is historically one of the more important wine growing regions in California. Back before the march of tract homes and highways, business campuses and colleges, grapes from the ranch of Leland Stanford, Charles LeFranc and and a fella’ with the last name Pellier, were valued as much as those from Napa and Sonoma and beyond. This vineyard's survival, which is located a couple hundred feet below the cutoff for the Santa Cruz Mountain AVA, is a bit of a miracle and owes its new lease on life to the hard work and investment of the Gregory family. We currently receive fruit from a lightly mixed block of Zinfandel and a bit of Carignan that rests on the well-drained slopes. This is one of the most elegant wines we made in the great 2016 vintage, defined by soaring perfume and mouthwatering fruit and spice. I only wish there was more of it to go around!"

Bedrock-Wine-Company-2017-Under-the-Mountain-Heritage-Wine-product-image-303-large.jpg
Bedrock "Under the Mountain Heritage Wine" label - from winery website

• "2017 'Under the Mountain' Heritage Wine, Santa Clara County:

"This amazing survivor vineyard is indeed 'under the mountain,' or more accurately right under the Santa Cruz Mountains. Located in the hills west of Morgan Hill and just north of Hecker Pass, the vineyard lies in a region once heavily planted to vines. Most of the original plantings in the area have given way to housing, shopping malls and the other needs of the sprawling south Bay Area, which makes this vineyard, nestled in the hills, so unique. Farmed by the Gregory family, the vineyard is planted predominately to Zinfandel and Carignan, though some Petite Sirah, Muscat and others exist on the site as well. The small amount of wine we are able to make off the site is defined by beautiful mountain acidity, fresh fruit and aromatics that pop out of the glass."


Bedrock Wine Company website:
https://bedrockwineco.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#231 Post by Wes Barton » February 19th, 2019, 6:37 pm

Located in the hills west of Morgan Hill and just north of Hecker Pass
Oops. That should say Gilroy. Not very close to Morgan Hill.
ITB - Useless lackey

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#232 Post by Drew Goin » March 6th, 2019, 1:22 pm

[truce.gif]
Wes Barton wrote:
February 19th, 2019, 6:37 pm
Located in the hills west of Morgan Hill and just north of Hecker Pass
Oops. That should say Gilroy. Not very close to Morgan Hill.

Good eye, Wes! That valley nook on Redwood Retreat Rd has some fascinating wine-related history. I look forward to seeing more attention being given to this area.

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#233 Post by Drew Goin » March 6th, 2019, 1:37 pm

San Benito
"Mixed Ag Report from County, Down Overall: Value of Livestock, Pasture Up, Vegetables Down"

by Barry Holtzclaw
January 4, 2019

"... San Benito County continues to be one of the top five producing counties in California of specialty vegetable crops, spinach, lettuces and salad mix products.

"The 2017 Crop and Livestock Report, prepared annually by county Agriculture Commissioner Karen Overstreet, offered a very mixed set of production results, with overall production down 4 percent. The county is required by law to produce this report.

“'The economic impact of production agriculture to our local economy is much greater than the gross production value detailed in this report,' said Karen Overstreet, county agriculture commissioner.

“'It is a fundamental, and an often unidentified fact that agriculture provides additional value well beyond the $351 million dollars in gross product sales to San Benito County’s economy.'

“'Labor, logistics and traffic are beginning to hinder the industry,' she said in the report. 'We will learn more about these effects over the next few years to come.'

"...Wine grape yields were off slightly and prices were pretty much even. This year growers experienced a great amount pressure from the production standpoint. Wine grapes are the county’s biggest fruit crop, $27.6 million in 2017, and $31 million in 2016.

"...San Benito County’s Top 10 Commodities

• Rank: 4th

• Product: Wine grapes

• Value: $27.6 million

• % of total: 8%

• % change from 2016: – 11% "

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#234 Post by Drew Goin » March 6th, 2019, 1:49 pm

San Benito Link
"Crop Report: A Rich Bounty: County Agricultural Value Increases by Nearly $7 million Over Last Year"

by Hollister Free Lance
September 28, 2017

"San Benito County agriculture had a good year in 2016. Total commodity values for the county’s largest industry increased by nearly $7 million in gross sales over the year before, according to the San Benito County Agricultural Commissioner’s crop report for 2016. The most growth was in vegetable and row crops.

"According to the annual tally of county produce, San Benito County remains one of the top five producing counties in the state of spinach, peppers, lettuces and salad mix products. In 2016, the overall value of the county’s agricultural output increased slightly by 1.9 percent from the year before. Total crop value for 2016 was $367,451,250.

"...Wine grapes had a tremendous year, with a 69 percent increase in value over 2015.

Pat Wirz, who owns a 65-acre vineyard in the Cienega Valley, said the year’s bumper crop is because of good rainfall.

“'Your crop is made the year before, when the little bunches bloom and the buds are mature for the following year. And we had two pretty good rain years. For the first time in four or five years the quality looks good,' he said.

The moist air does pose its own set of challenges, however.

“'Most vineyards had a little more mildew pressure, but we were able to keep it under control,' said Wirz.

As a whole, he said, area growers have experienced one of their better vintages in the last 3 to 4 years.

“'The only thing that may affect it is this hot spell,' said Wirz. 'But for this time of year it is not that abnormal.'"

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#235 Post by Drew Goin » March 9th, 2019, 7:04 pm

Ryan Stirm's eponymous winery is currently offering a handful of new things for lovers of Cienega Valley juice (plus some other stuff):

Stirm+2017+WZZN+Front-1.jpg
STiRM Wirz Zin - from winery website

STiRM Wine Company Release:


"2017 'Wirz Vineyard' Zinfandel

"Vintage Summary:

"The 2017 growing season began with record winter rainfall in most of California, including in the Cienega Valley, but not a true El Niño winter. This resulted in strong spring growth, and finally a decent yield increase from 2016. Cool nights were the norm throughout August, with a record heat spike over Labor Day Weekend to finish off ripening. The grapes were harvested on September 9 and 10th.

"Winemaking:

"The grapes were picked by hand, sorted in the field. At the winery the grapes were destemmed into a redwood fermenter, with 1% Riesling grapes added into the field blend. Pumped over once daily, pressed after a 10 day fermentation. Elevage in old (10 years) barriques for 18 months on fine lees. Racked to stainless steel one month prior with the addition of 'Wirz' Riesling into the final blend (Zinfandel 81.5%/Riesling 18.5%). Unfined, unfiltered. Bottled February 13th, 2019. 178 cases produced."


"2017 'Wirz Vineyard' Riesling

"Vintage Summary:

"The 2017 growing season began with record winter rainfall in most of California, including in the Cienega Valley, but not a true El Niño winter. This resulted in strong spring growth, and finally a decent yield increase from 2016. Cool nights were the norm throughout August, with a record heat spike over Labor Day Weekend. The resilient Riesling persevered and hung for another three weeks in classic mild autumn conditions.. The grapes were harvested on September 28th.

"Winemaking:

"The grapes were picked by hand. At the winery the grapes were given 24 hours of whole cluster maceration to extract tannins, aroma, and flavor compounds in the skins, followed by pressing the grapes. No sulfur was added to allow the juice to oxidize. After a 36 hour cold settle in tank, the clean juice was racked off the solids to another tank for spontaneous fermentation. The wine was sulfured post completion of secondary fermentation with elevage in tank on fine lees. Racked off fine lees a month prior to bottling. Unfined and unfiltered. The only addition we ever use is sulfur. Bottled July 5th, 2018. 250 cases produced."


Also Being Offered:

2017 Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir

2018 Los Chuchaquis 'Ancestrale' Albariño


STiRM Wine Company website:
https://www.stirmwine.com
925 . 330 . 4400
ryan@stirmwine.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#236 Post by Drew Goin » March 9th, 2019, 11:49 pm

After first hearing about this new operation a few short months ago, I began searching the internet for None Such's website. Lo and behold, I finally have located it!!!

module-01.jpg
Caitlin Quinn - from winery website

None Such Wines is Caitlin Quinn's new-ish (circa 2017) project. At the moment, there is but one offering, but what an offering it is:

_20190310_014448.JPG
Bottle image detail - from winery website

None Such 2017 "Enz Vineyard" Mourvèdre ($38/btl):

"The Vineyard:

"The historic 'Enz Vineyard' was planted in 1923 deep in the central coast’s Gabilan Mountain range located east of Monterey. The vineyard is dry-farmed and organically tended, growing in a unique mix of granite and limestone-rich loam. The gnarled 95 year old Mourvèdre vines are head-trained, basket-pruned, and own rooted. 'Enz' has the distinction of being the sole vineyard in the Lime Kiln Valley AVA."

gallery-02.jpg
"Enz Vineyard" - from winery website

"The Wine:

"Hand-harvested on September 19th, the Mourvèdre grapes were foot-tread and fermented 100% whole cluster with native yeast, basket pressed, then aged in five neutral oak barrels for ten months, then bottled July 12th 2018. A core of Mourvèdre meatiness, balanced with luscious floral, wild rose aromatics and earthy tannin connote depth and elegance. 12.6% abv"



None Such Wines website:
https://nonesuchwines.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#237 Post by Drew Goin » March 10th, 2019, 12:07 am

Enz_Vineyard_Credit_Alex_Krause_1920x1280.jpg
"Enz Vineyard, photo credit Alex Krause" - from WE article

Wine Enthusiast
"Old Vines That Still Make Great Wine"

by Matt Kettmann
February 25, 2019


"...'Enz Vineyard'

"• Lime Kiln Valley, California
• First planted in 1890s
Grapes Planted: Alicante Bouschet, Cabernet Pfeffer, Carignan, Mission, Mourvèdre, Orange Muscat, Palomino, Sauvignon Blanc and Zinfandel
Wines Produced: Vineyard-designate bottlings from Birichino, Dirty and Rowdy Family Wines, I. Brand & Family, Nonesuch, Penville Projects and Vöcal Vineyards; sourced by multiple other brands

"Adjacent to a limestone quarry and kilns that powered the development of San Jose and San Francisco, the San Benito County vineyard was planted to satisfy the thirst of the kiln workers, whose tiny town was eventually abandoned. It was first planted to Orange Muscat, Zinfandel and Cabernet Pfeffer, though the latter appears to actually be a mixed block of Cabernet Sauvignon, Grand Noir, Gros Verdot/Mourtaou, Trousseau Noir and more. Starting in the 1920s, Alicante Bouschet, Carignane, Mission, Mourvèdre and Palomino were added to the site. Then, in 1967, Bob and Susan Enz purchased the vineyard, and it’s now farmed by their son, Russell Enz, who grew up there. Sauvignon Blanc was planted in 1982. Everything is own- or vinifera-rooted and dry-farmed."

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#238 Post by Drew Goin » March 11th, 2019, 12:11 am

The newest post on The Wine Write blog is an interview with the person who perhaps is most responsible for the rebirth of interest in San Benito County wine - Kenneth Volk.

ken muscat 133.jpg
Ken Volk - from The Wine Write

The Wine Write blog
"Catching Up With Wine Icon Kenneth Volk"

by Randy Smith
March 10, 2019

"...The Wine Write: 'Your name has come up in recent interviews we did with Ian Brand and Nicole Walsh where Enz Vineyard was discussed. Tell me about finding that vineyard and farming it.'

"Ken: 'I came to that vineyard through other relationships I had in San Benito County. At one time, I think in the late 1960s, there was more Chardonnay grown in San Benito than there was in the Napa Valley. Ron Siletto is a grower friend of mine up there. He was the last Chief Financial Officer of Almaden Vineyards. Ron was tasked with the job of shutting down the winery. Almaden made the mistake of trying to go head to head with Gallo in the jug wine business.

"'The vast majority of the San Benito vineyards are on the Pacific tectonic plate. The soils have a lot of lime and calcareous content. Drainage is pretty good. There's enough rain that you could basically dry farm.

"'Ron introduced me to Bob Enz. This was back in the Wild Horse days. I started working with fruit off that vineyard in 1984.

"...'The climate was unique. You could make some good wines there. Most of the Zinfandel and Mourvedre historically had been sold to the Cline family labels.'

enz-vineyard2.jpg
"Enz Vineyard" - from The Wine Write blog

"...The Wine Write: 'At what point did you start managing the vineyard?

"Ken: 'I went back there for my Kenneth Volk brand. Bob Enz had been in a pretty bad car accident and wasn't fit to care for the vineyard. There had been a falling out with the Cline label. I made a deal to lease the vineyard. The late Corky Roach, a former vineyard manager for Chalone and other vineyards in San Benito, consulted with me. We farmed it with our own crews starting in 2008. We trellised the young vines and resurrected the drip irrigation system to help them along. Most years you could dry farm Enz successfully, but new plantings needed irrigation. I grafted Sauvignon Blanc over to Pinot Noir. We did all the needed viticulture practices to keep the vineyard disease free. We put in a lot of effort.

"'I had my stroke in 2013. There was no way I could continue to run it, but we got the vineyard in pretty good shape during that run.

"'I was selling some Enz Vineyard fruit to Neil Collins for his Lone Madrone label and to Nicole Walsh for her Ser Winery project. Nicole showed some interest in taking over the vineyard. I talked to her about the place. That didn't work out for whatever reason. I've been pretty unaware of what's been going on there since I had to walk away, but the potential of that site is very, very high.'..."


Kenneth Volk website:
https://www.volkwines.com



I honestly encourage those interested in Kenneth Volk wines or recent San Benito/Paso Robles/Santa Barbara history to read all of this wonderful interview!!!

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#239 Post by Drew Goin » May 5th, 2019, 9:06 pm

Dirty & Rowdy Family Wines YouTube Video:

"Enz Vineyard"




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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#240 Post by Drew Goin » May 6th, 2019, 4:35 pm

NoneSuch Wines bottles a very limited quantity of "Enz Vineyard" Mourvèdre from the Lime Kiln Valley.


The Wine Write blog
"Meet Caitlin Quinn of NoneSuch Wines"
by Randy Smith
May 5, 2019


"...The Wine Write: 'Tell me about NoneSuch Wines.'

"Caitlin: 'I came up with "NoneSuch" as a playful way of saying that I want to show distinctive vineyards that speak to me. There's nothing else like them. They're unique. I want to convey that with my wines. I'm only making five barrels right now. It's almost impossible to carve out the time and space needed to do more. Our harvest season at Arnot-Roberts lasts about three months because we make so many varieties from vineyards in different regions. NoneSuch will be a very small project for now.'

"The Wine Write: 'How did you get your foot in the door at Enz Vineyard?'

"Caitlin: 'The vineyard manager is Ian Brand. He's extremely thoughtful and well connected. I worked with his wine while I was at Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard ten years ago. We did some custom crush work for him. I became familiar with him and his wines through that experience. It's a small world here.

"'Ian reached out to me about Enz Vineyard. I jumped right on it. I hadn't visited the site, but I could tell from Ian's description that it was special. Ian thinks it's one of the most exciting vineyards in California. I trust his judgment!'

coWxVm5w.jpeg
"Caitlin in the vines in the 'Enz Vineyard'" - image from The Wine Write blog

"The Wine Write: 'What was your impression when you did visit Enz?'

"Caitlin: 'It's about a five hour drive from Arnot-Roberts. I got there the first time in the summer of 2017. I literally laid down in the dirt. It just felt like I was in the right place at the right time. Everything clicked. It felt like I was home.

"'Just thinking about the vineyard was awe inspiring. The dirt had been worked for so long. The vines were beautiful. They're pristine. They have been cared for well. The mix of soils is amazing. They are fluffy and light, but you know that there is a huge foundation of bedrock, granite, and limestone beneath. That's an extremely rare combination in California... and the world. It's also dry farmed. Only the Pinot Noir that Ken Volk planted is under irrigation.'..."



NoneSuch Wines website:
https://nonesuchwines.com

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#241 Post by Drew Goin » May 17th, 2019, 7:30 pm

Thanks to this post on Wine Berserkers, I was able to determine that Blue Ox is up and running.


Berkeley Side
"Want to go wine tasting? You can try more wine on a day trip to Berkeley than to Napa or Sonoma"

by Frances Dinkelspiel
May 17, 2019



The Blue Ox winery features a Cabernet Feffer from the "Enz Vineyard" in Line Kiln Valley, San Benito County.


2018 Cabernet Pfeffer link

"...One-third of the grapes were left whole cluster to lend a semi-carbonic element to the wine and soften the often aggressive tannins of this variety. We were very careful with the cap management because we did not want to over extract the wine. It was punched down twice a day simply by wetting the cap with our hands for the first half of the fermentation leading into one punchdown a day as it got closer to dryness. The wine was then pressed into neutral French Oak and aged for 5 months before bottling it unfined and unfiltered. We produced 2 barrels.

"Tasting Notes: Wild Cranberry. Blackberry. White Pepper. Violet.

"What’s in a Name? - Persona is a beautiful film by Ingmar Bergman that is about the ways in which ideas create images and realities. It explores the idea of the self as liquid through the lens of an actress and a nurse. We thought it was a good fit for our Cab Pfeffer, which has a fairly fluid identity itself. There is still debate about what the grape actually is. Some say it’s the lost grape of Bordeaux, Gros Verdot, while others say it was a cross by some German scientist. Whatever the truth, it’s a rare little thing that creates delicious wines of subtle structure and floral lift when handled gently."

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#242 Post by Drew Goin » January 21st, 2020, 6:30 am

Edible Silicon Valley
"Dorcich Family Vineyards"

June 10, 2019

Dorcich-Family-Vineyards_Guide-IMG.jpg
Docrcich Family Wines

"A family owned and operated winery with a sleek industrial-loft style tasting room. Our 73-acre picturesque estate is nestled alongside Uvas Creek. Our tasting flights feature 9 estate grown varietals, Dad’s Blend and our flagship wine—Monte Bello Cabernet Sauvignon.

"DFV label is our premium wines including the Monte Bello Cabernet Sauvignon. We will be releasing more DFV wines this Fall.

"The Ankora label is our everyday wine and a tribute to family. Ankora is Croatian for anchor. It represents the family being anchored here in the Santa Clara Valley. The label art represents Stephen Dorcich's grandfather’s journey here to America to start a new life for his family and the generations to come. It’s about hard work and sacrifice to provide a better life for those to come."

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#243 Post by Drew Goin » March 6th, 2020, 12:14 pm

I needed to add a few newer (as well as not-so-new) producers to the registry of wineries bottling San Benito/Santa Clara grapes...


Camino Cellars
Enz Vineyard Mourvedre


Rexford Winery
2017 Zinfandel, Lime Kiln Valley, Gillian Enz Vineyard


Reeve Wines
2018 Prism San Benito County Riesling

"Because of the devastating 2018 fires in Mendocino, we were forced to scramble for an alternative source of Prism right before harvest. Our friends at Bedrock Winery quickly connected us with one of their growers to help us out and ensure we had a great source to continue with Prism. Although it’s not the same AVA, the spirit of electricity lives on.

+ Sourced mainly from the 60+ year old Wirz Vineyard in the Cienga Hills with a dash of Vonarburg Riesling in Mendocino to give it continuity.

+ The fruit was hand-sorted before a gentle whole cluster pressing.

+ This Riesling was slowly fermented in stainless steel at cool temperatures over a two month period.

+ Bottled in Stelvin Lux screwcap closures to enhance the freshness and laser-like nature of the wine (and to cut down on any cork taint.) Plus easy access, right?

+ Pungent rainforest flowers and stone on the nose. A mix of green apple and tropical fruit favors with a real driving, tension loaded lemony finish."



Bedrock Wine Company


2018 Under the Mountain Heritage Wine

"One of the most intriguing sites we work with, Vineyard Under the Mountain was planted in the 1910s in the hills to the west of Morgan Hill (my favorite hill) and just a little south of Hecker Pass. Located just a couple hundred below the elevation line for the Santa Cruz Mountains the vineyard is a rare remaining old vineyard in an area once renowned for its quality wine production. The 2018, which is composed primarily of Zinfandel and Carignan, showcases the beautiful, precise fruit of the location and the brightness that comes with exposure to the Pacific Ocean. This will take a little while to unfurl but promises great rewards when it does."

2018 Wirz Vineyard Old Vine Riesling

"From own-rooted vines planted in 1963 in the Cienega Valley on sandy soils derived of limestone and granite, this vineyard put out a scant 1-1.5 tons per acre of perfumed, vibrant fruit in 2018. For those wondering where Cienega Valley is (I had to look at a map the first time) it is located to the east of the Gabilan Range near the eastern entrance to Pinnacle National Park. The 2018 is one of my favorite versions of this wine as it combines its natural savory, mineral texture with classic Riesling flowery perfume (gardenia anyone?). This wine is fermented dry (we will invariably get a lot of questions since it is riesling) and made more in the style of Alsatian, Austrian or Grosses Gewächs iterations of the variety."

2018 Enz Heritage Wine, Lime Kiln Valley

"This is the first vintage we got the opportunity to work with Enz Vineyard, one of the few GREAT old vine sites on the Central Coast. Located in a remote, golden valley on the eastern side of the Gabilan Range, the vineyard is technically in the Lime Kiln AVA—named for the limestone quarry and kiln just up the road from the vineyard. Planted on its own roots in limestone and granite derived sands in the 1920s, Enz is composed predominately of Mataro but also has Zinfandel, Cabernet Pfeffer and several other interplanted varieties. The wine is roughly the breakdown of the vineyard—about 70% Mataro, 20% Zinfandel and 10% Cabernet Pfeffer. And what exactly is Cabernet Pfeffer, one might ask? Despite much lore in the area as to its origins—some posit that it is a blend of Trousseau and Cabernet, some posit that it was crossed by a gent named William Pfeffer, some say it was named Pfeffer because it is peppery and Pfeffer means pepper in German. Based on PCR analysis, it is actually an obscure variety from the southwest of France called Mourtaou. There is a not much of it in California, but most of it is in the area of Cienega Valley (there is some at Wirz as well) so is definitely a hallmark of this remote viticultural area."


Stirm Wine Company
2018 Wirz Vineyard Zinfandel

"Vintage Summary: The 2018 growing season was one of the mildest growing seasons in recent memory. Less than average rainfall during the winter months, though the March rains proved to be a savior. The late rains coupled with very cool weather set back the physiological development of all the vine cycles from flowering to fruit set a couple of weeks compared with 2018. Other than the usual heat during June and July, the late summer conditions were very mild and allowed us to ripen fruit later than ever with very slow sugar accumulation and high acid retention. Grapes were picked over two days, on October 1,2 2018.

"Winemaking: The grapes were picked by hand, sorted in the field. At the winery the grapes were sorted into a redwood fermenter, whole cluster, with 1% Riesling grapes added into the field blend. Pumped over once daily, pressed after a 11 day fermentation. Elevage in old (10 years) barriques for 18 months on fine lees. Racked to stainless steel one month prior with the addition of Wirz Riesling into the final blend (Zinfandel 91%/Riesling 9%). Unfined, unfiltered. Bottled February 25th, 2020. 210 cases produced."

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#244 Post by Drew Goin » April 13th, 2020, 6:35 pm

Randy over at The Wine Write has done another fantastic interview with one of the great winemakers focused on fruit from the San Benito/Santa Clara area!

45023204_1943850795915048_393408438694051840_o.jpg
Ryan Stirm and Pat Wirz - from The Wine Write

The Wine Write
"Our Conversation With Ryan Stirm of Stirm Wine"

April 4, 2020


"What struck us after our conversation with this week's guest? His sense of purpose.

Ryan Stirm started his eponymous label in 2013 during an influential stint at Tyler Winery working under winemaker Justin Willett. While Ryan could have chosen to focus on any of the many grape varietals that thrive in Santa Barbara County, he picked one: Riesling. His mission is to help pioneer the new age of California Riesling.

"Stirm Wine Company is now based in Santa Cruz County, where Ryan shares space with three natural winemakers in a winery located in Aromas, a small farming town southeast of Santa Cruz. These aren't vanity projects flush with money. Making do with what you have is the order of the day.

"Riesling isn't the only thing that feeds Ryan Stirm's passion. He spends most of his time these days working distinctive, rugged, organic, dry-farmed vineyards. His calling is to improve the viticultural practices at these ranches, many of which were farmed conventionally in the past, and leave the dirt better than when he found it. His wines are made to tell the stories of these unique places. And he'd like us to come along for the ride."

"....The Wine Write: Wirz Vineyard has garnered some deserved attention of late. How did you get in there?"

"Ryan: I literally just drove there and met Pat Wirz on the farm. He's pretty old school. They have a land line, but they're about as hard to contact as anyone I've met. San Benito County isn't very far away, only an hour away from Silicon Valley, but you might as well be stepping into another universe in terms of how far removed it is from society.

"It's funny that the vineyard even exists. Vineyards need commerce and sales, just like any other endeavor. A good local wine business existed in San Benito County for years: Almaden. Everybody out there sold fruit to Almaden. They used to have warehouses out there that would hold thirty-seven thousand barrels. At one point that was the largest barrel warehouse in the world. The Wirz Vineyard fruit all went there for fifteen to twenty years. Pat Wirz worked for Almaden for a number of years. His white grapes were originally used to make sparkling wine. Red grapes like Zinfandel, Rosa del Peru, and the mixed blacks also went there.

IMG_3115+copy.jpg
Wirz Vineyard - from The Wine Write

"After Almaden folded all of the Wirz Vineyard Riesling went to Randall Grahm. It got blended with Washington State Riesling to make the Pacific Rim brand. So having those two big buyers helped keep Wirz Vineyard afloat for years. It's a real historic place and a survivor, as are Enz Vineyard, Eden Rift, and DeRose. There are some hidden gems in San Benito County. I liken the area to Napa South. It's got that much history."

"The Wine Write: What happened to allow yourself and other smaller producers to get into Wirz?"

"Ryan: I think there was a shift in his business model after 2010. He started to work with some smaller winemakers. Thomas Fogarty came into the mix. Bedrock started buying fruit. I began getting fruit for Stirm in 2015. Maidenstoen is in there now. There are probably ten different wineries working with them now. I've slowly started to scale up with mine. I get Riesling, Zinfandel, and Rosa del Peru from there."

"...The Wine Write: How can readers best source Stirm wines?"

"Ryan: I'd love for them to find my wines through our website. I definitely want to grow my sales there. I'm a one man show. Right now virtually all the wine is sold through distribution. They're pretty easy to find in the Bay Area, but the best way for most folks to grab a bottle is online...".


STiRM Wine Company website:
http://www.stirmwine.com/

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#245 Post by Drew Goin » April 27th, 2020, 6:57 am

As many previous "Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage" thread posts focused on the Enz Vineyard of Lime Kiln, the current feed of info centering on this region appear to remain hyperfocused on another singular viticultural site: the Wirz Vineyard.

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Wirz Vineyard #1 - from SER email

From An April 23, 2020, SER Winery email -


"I've decided to take you all on a virtual tour. I am calling this my 'Virtual Vineyard Tour Series'. Each wine from a particular featured vineyard will be discounted. I am starting off with one of my favorite vineyards: Wirz Vineyard. I've been working with this vineyard since 2003. Cool climate, old vine, dry farmed, organically farmed, a trusted farmer and colleague, hit all of the boxes for me when considering what grapes to produce wine from.

"My boys and I went to visit the grower, Pat Wirz, last weekend to check on the vines. He graciously shared some knowledge about his vineyard with us as my son recorded and edited a video for you all to enjoy. Please keep reading below about special discounts on the wines made from Wirz Vineyard.


YouTube Video: SER Winery, "Virtual Vineyard Tour Series: 'Wirz Vineyard'"





"TIME STAMPS

· 1:00 - Interviewing Pat Wirz, owner and grower of Wirz Vineyard.

· 1:50 - Pat discusses this year’s rainfall and his irrigation philosophy.

· 3:00 - Pat discusses the climate at Wirz Vineyard.

· 8:15 - Pat talks about soil composition and how the vines are planted.

· 9:30 - Pat talks about Cabernet Pfeffer."


"...Wine Enthusiast Magazine scores:

94 Points & Editor's Choice - 2017 Cabernet Pfeffer, Wirz Vineyard

91 Points - 2016 Sparkling Riesling, Wirz Vineyard "

"...I'd love to discuss more about Wirz Vineyard wines with you all on a virtual tasting.

"Friday, May 1st. 5:30-6:30pm

"Email Nicole for the invitation: nicole@serwinery.com
"


SER Winery website:
www.serwinery.com

67dc14f5-d74c-4691-9206-6f45090d1797.jpg
Wirz Vineyard #2 - from SER email

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#246 Post by Wes Barton » July 8th, 2020, 2:06 am

SANTA CLARA VALLEY AND ITS RESOURCES (1896)

The Santa Clara Valley Vineyards section starts at page 257. Fun quote from the intro: "It is a fact that a large part of the California wine shipped abroad finds its way back to this country and is sold under a French label."

https://books.google.com/books?id=mBY1A ... ca&f=false
ITB - Useless lackey

Can't stand bloody wax capsules.

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Drew Goin
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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#247 Post by Drew Goin » September 6th, 2020, 2:07 pm

Wes Barton wrote:
July 8th, 2020, 2:06 am
SANTA CLARA VALLEY AND ITS RESOURCES (1896)

The Santa Clara Valley Vineyards section starts at page 257. Fun quote from the intro: "It is a fact that a large part of the California wine shipped abroad finds its way back to this country and is sold under a French label."

https://books.google.com/books?id=mBY1A ... ca&f=false
Wes, I am just now seeing this! What a hoot!

Cool find!!!

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#248 Post by Drew Goin » September 7th, 2020, 12:05 pm

In a previous post on this thread, I noted that Margins Wine sources their Mourvedre from a Santa Clara County site called the "Sattler's Vineyard".

Margins' website has added some details about this vineyard.


IMG-0228.jpeg
Sattler's Vineyard 1 - from Margins website

"Sattler's Vineyard"

"...Year Planted: 2009
Acres: 2.7
Varietal: Mourvèdre & Counoise
Farming: In winter 2019, one pass of glyphosate (roundup) was sprayed. All other vineyard practices were organic. The vineyard has been in organic conversion since summer 2019.

"Ed Sattler planted his backyard vineyard in 2009 and has been intimately involved in farming it since the beginning. This hot, dry site in the foothills of the southern Santa Cruz Mountains has an intense diurnal swing, bringing cool temperatures every evening and lending to the preservation of acidity in the grapes...".


Margins Wine website:
https://www.marginswine.com/

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#249 Post by Drew Goin » September 17th, 2020, 7:49 am

Disgorgeous Podcast - Season 8

Episode 101:
"March-ifornia Part 1: All's Well That Enz Well (A deep dive into the only vineyard in the Lime Kiln AVA with Ian Brand)"
March 9, 2020


"The boys return for the first episode post the 100 ep milestone and they've brought along their good friend Ian Brand, to make cryptic dad rock references, trigger Duck and chug Mourvedre...


"LIST

° Birichino Wines, Lime Kiln Valley Mourvedre, Enz Vineyard, 'Mr Natural VOL 3,' 2018

° Raj Parr Wines, 'Anika Mourvedre,' 2018

° I Brand & Family, Lime Kiln Valley Old Vine Mourvedre, Enz Vineyard, 2018

° I Brand & Family, Lime Kiln Valley Old Vine Mourvedre, Enz Vineyard, 2015

° None Such Wines, Lime Kiln Valley Mourvedres, Enz Vineyard, 2017

° Sandlands, San Benito County, Mataro, 2015"

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Re: Santa Clara & San Benito Wine Heritage

#250 Post by seanr » September 23rd, 2020, 8:49 am

I happened to see a property for sale on Redfin on Redwood Retreat in west Gilroy that looks to have about 1-2 acres of older head trained vines. Anyone know anything about this property? I am hoping the new owners keep up the vines as they look to be pretty old.

4285 Redwood Retreat Rd. GILROY, CA 95020

Here are a few Google street view shots.

https://www.google.com/maps/@37.0291229 ... 384!8i8192

https://www.google.com/maps/@37.0295376 ... 384!8i8192

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