Winemaker’s Philosophy

GM_PeayWinery_0129Many people who come to visit our hilltop vineyard immediately fall in love with the spot. I did, too, when I came to see it for the first time. But I viewed it with a regard not just for the physical beauty of the place, but for the magnificent vineyard potential I immediately perceived when I walked the slopes of each vineyard block. I had known for some time that the Sonoma Coast was the new frontier, viticulturally, with its unique climate and a topography that lends the crucial elements for growing grapes for quality wine: long sunny days, cool nights, and mild autumns that offer slow but continuous ripening seasons.

As a wine maker, my job is to coax out and accentuate the defining characteristics of the grapes to produce wines of distinction. As a result, what happens before the grapes arrive at the winery vastly affects my ability to achieve my goals. For me, one of the most important aspects of making quality wine is growing grapes in or selecting grapes from an ideal site. If you start with grapes grown in an ideal site, you are that much closer to producing a high quality wine. Factors such as average temperature, overall heat days (days with temperature above a certain level), soil health and drainage, sun exposure (aspect) and others should be considered for the type of variety grown and wine quality and style objectives. Equally important to me is the meticulous and mindful cultivation of balanced vines that result in low yields, the ultimate objective being the production of concentrated flavors in the grapes. And lastly, to bring out and retain these flavors, I employ wine making practices that are minimally manipulative to the grapes during processing and also to the wine during its vinification and barrel aging.

With our vineyard on the Sonoma Coast, we accomplished the crucial step of securing an ideal location. I am able to work with Nick to grow balanced vines that produce fruit of the highest quality. And I believe in our wines you will witness my belief in gentle wine making.

This is my mark. This is our mark. I think you will enjoy it.

Vanessa