For Winemakers/Grapegrowers


  • I first consider myself a farmer, then a winemaker.
  • I first consider myself a winemaker, then a farmer.
  • It is impossible to separate the two.
  • Flawed poll - flames below.

0 voters

Kinda a “chicken or the egg” type of question … so, how do you view yourself in these terms?

I came into winegrowing/making after 10 years of farming and marketing specialty organic vegetables, so I’ve always looked at things from the farmers perspective. Now that I only farm our three vineyards, I look at it from many different perspectives. I am constantly taking into account, yields, vine balance, soil health, while having to be smart financially, as to survive in this market today. We have to farm so that we don’t negetively impact our neighbors and creeks/environs around the vineyards and take care of the soil, because it’s all we’ve got, and it’s our future, and our children’s. Also, we have to consider the economy and markets, relative to which grape varieties to grow and make/market. There is a never ending amount of things to learn and consider, and it is ever changing with new ideas, market trends(people/markets saying Ca. Syrah is dead), and personal tastes changing and evolving. I really love the farming aspect of this business and having the priviledge of knowing and farming a site, for many years, is a wonderful experience. As far as being a winemaker, - I just try not to screw it up! [wink.gif]

We started the vines in '08 and made first wine this year from them.

So clearly a farmer first, but my view is more integrated. I am trying to learn what I want the wine to become and then to work from both ends of the process towards the result, so that I can cellar with care and farm with intention.

But sometimes fortune simply smiles, you get a batch of fruit that defies expectation
and you try not to mess with it too much.

I suspect that much of the “cellar choices” comes from what tankage/barrels were available.

I started making wine 12 years ago and had no interest in vineyard knowledge thinking I would count on the knowledge of the farmers to deliver a good product. Right around the time I started to realize that I need more knowledge of the vineyard [suicide.gif] to know the grapes were right for my winemaking style and I started learning about just that, the wine started to get good. So for me, you need knowledge of both to produce a good product. After all, good wine is only made from good grapes right???