In 2004 – which seems like a lifetime ago and yet as if it were yesterday – we started a little winery in Marina, California – about a quarter mile from the coast and just off of Highway 1. When I told people we were in Marina they were incredulous – Marina?! Why? Times were different then: “Garage” wineries weren’t very common and perhaps we were a little naïve: “Why isn’t the winery in the vineyard?” was another question we often answered.
Fast forward to today: we are still in Marina and suddenly find ourselves considered to be an “Urban Winery”. Progress! My original goal in 2004 for this winery was to feature Monterey wines as I felt that they were sorely underrepresented and underappreciated. Today we make a variety of wines from not only our own Estate vineyard in Carmel Valley – Hilltop Ranch – but also from many other small vineyards from Monterey County. Mourvedre? We produce one from the Chalone AVA. Tempranillo? We made our first in 2015 from a vineyard in southern reaches of Monterey County near Parkfield. Syrah? We source our grapes for this from a small vineyard near Lake San Antonio…the list goes on. We like to say you can taste all of Monterey County at our tasting room!
Monterey grows lots of grapes that go into well-recognized wines from all over the state but has historically received little recognition itself but I am happy to report that more small wineries like ours have been started and are producing a great variety of interesting wines. So, we are in very good company and all the more reason to come and visit – the future is bright!