Growing grapes and creating wines has been a long family tradition in Europe and the New World.
One ancestry line leads from the Austro-Hungarian Empire in present day Croatia. For generations vines were tended, harvested and wines produced.
These skills were brought to North America in 1880's and two different vineyards established in California's San Joaquin Valley. The other family emigrated from France and made its way to California in 1918. There was a stop in Minnesota (see the Auction poster). A San Joaquin Valley vineyard was also quickly developed. Unfortunately, like many farms and ranches of the era, it succumbed to the Depression and everything was lost.
The family wine connection was re-established at the end of World War II and for the next thirty years as Jim's father joined Christian Brothers Winery. In our household there was always a bottle of wine on the dinner table and a discussion of new varietals.
Winery visits in the San Joaquin and Napa valleys occurred with frequency well before California wines gained their popularity and world reputation and "crushing season" was as important on the calendar as the holiday season.
The sweet smell of fermentation and images of trucks and trailers being weighed, samples taken for analysis, crushers operating and the clacking of the bottling line lingers in the memory.
And the tradition continues ...
Each of our Platinum Series reserves celebrates a grandchild.
This is a tribute to our parents and the "Greatest Generation." For our mothers a celebratory Sparkling wine and for our fathers a delicious red.
The 2009 Blanc de Blanc St. Lucille Reserve was created in anticipation of her 100th birthday in 2013. Sshh...It's a surprise.