Founding Cholame Vineyard has been a rewarding experience. As my friend Mark shares, life experiences “make for good stories to tell later.”
In 2005, I went on a motorcycle ride in California’s Central Coast with Steve, a good friend from my high school days. While riding through the Paso Robles area, we took many of the back roads. This area is primarily cattle ranches with a few vineyards and the most beautiful Oak trees you can experience, not to mention some of the best winding roads a biker can appreciate! One of our stops included lunch at the Parkfield Cafe in the small town of Parkfield, located in the Cholame Valley. Originally named by the native Yokut Indians, Cholame, pronounced [Sho-Lamb], means “The Beautiful One®.” The name of this valley confirmed my experience of the area.
The beauty of Cholame Valley inspired me to come back and experience the land on a deeper level. Drawing on my background in horticulture, I decided to find some land where we could start a vineyard from the ground up. With the purchase of 75 acres along Vineyard Canyon Road, we realized this goal. In our first phase, we planted 10 acres of vines. We chose our varieties carefully, matching the soil with the environmental conditions, to ensure our vines would thrive. Honoring the heritage of the Central Coast of California, we planted Zinfindel. We introduced new varieties to the valley including Grenache, Mourvedre, Syrah, Petite Syrah and Tempranillo. Each variety compliments the other, while individually they are all strong enough to stand on their own.
I am grateful for the support of friends and family and look forward to gathering together to share a meal, a story, and a bottle of Cholame Vineyard wine. We invite you to join us in this tradition.