Having a vineyard was not our lifelong dream. OK, maybe it was, subconsciously. It all happened rather organically. In the late 80’s we were frequently visiting with a close friend at her family’s summer cottage in Healdsburg, California. Many weekends were spent bicycling in the mornings, returning to spend the afternoons lying on rafts on the Russian River. We’d go wine tasting, then come back to the house, relax, try different wines, and chat with family and friends while dinner was on the barbeque.
This experience moved us towards the idea of buying property in wine country, possibly for retirement. Eventually, we came to the realization that if we had a house in wine country, then we probably should have a vineyard. We decided on Pinot Noir, which is not only our favorite wine, but also the trickiest and most difficult to grow. Why not? What could possibly go wrong?
We looked at property in the Healdsburg area for a period of several years. At one point a realtor asked us if we had thought about Sebastopol over Healdsburg? We did some research and realized that Sebastopol was probably a better location for us, and especially for Pinot compared to other areas in Sonoma County, as it has a cooler summer climate.
The beauty of our vineyard is its location and the combination of climate and terroir. We are blessed with warm days (most of the time) and evenings cooled by wind and fog. We are located very close to the Petaluma Gap ensuring the cool marine layer blows in from the coast in the afternoons, providing natural air conditioning for the grapes–and us.