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Farming Practices

Because we are small family farmers focused on quality, we give our grape vines close, personal attention while utilizing organic and Biodynamic methods.

Leverage Nature... naturally!
The key to healthy vines is healthy soils and good predators, which we achieve by leveraging nature itself. Through the use of cover crops and compost, we enrich the organic matter in the soils naturally. Leaving riparian corridors and woodlands intact, we leverage our diverse habitat by encouraging owls and raptors to control the rodent populations. Avoiding chemical fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides, we maintain a vital, regenerating ecosystem both beneath our soils and above ground in the flora and fauna populations. Utilizing Biodynamic farming practices, we harness and balance the earth's downward forces, feeding the soil and plant vigor, and the sky's upward forces, aiding flowering, fruiting and ripening. Thus we leverage nature itself to bring better balance, improved texture, deeper flavor, and more intensity to our grapes and wines.

Close, Personal Attention
Living in the middle of the vineyards also allows us to understand the soils, the climate, and the personality of each vineyard block intimately. We can serve the individual needs of each vineyard and vineyard block. Most of the vineyard work is done by hand due to the steep mountainside, thus more personal attention to be paid to each vine. We think that you will find the close attention to the vineyard comes out in the consistent high quality of our wines.

Quality over Quantity
Low yielding vines produce the best wine and our vineyard team led by Vincentsacrifices quantity and coaxes the optimal flavors out of the grapes through:

  • Precise irrigation management: limiting water to the vine at the right time in its lifecycle keeps total yield down and overall berry size small
  • Short shoot thinning: if a shoot is not long enough or doesn't have enough leaves to support grapes, then it's grape bunches are dropped
  • Rigorous crop thinning at verasion: when most of the grapes are getting ripe, we sacrifice those that are unripe so that all grapes are evenly ripe at harvest.

Reduce and Reuse "Gold"
Water is gold in California and we treat it that way. We utilize drip irrigation instead of overhead sprinklers, thus targeting the water right where it is needed, at the roots of the individual vines. We also practice "deficit irrigation"—by reducing the amount of water we use, we moderately stress the vines slightly in order to produce the smallest, most intensely flavored grapes. The water that we do use for irrigation consists of both winery wastewater (naturally-filtered through our constructed wetland) and rainwater captured in vernal ponds.

 

Because we live in the middle of our vineyards and raise our son here, we don’t use any chemical herbicides or pesticides.Lise

 

Cane Pruning ➜ Quality

Most vineyards are spur pruned, but cane pruning has many advantages.

Organic & Biodynamic

Learn how we farm our vineyards without chemicals.

Fragility of Pollination

Why are so few olive flowers are pollinated? Why aren't grape flowers showy?