Fri, 22 May 2015
In perhaps the most entertaining interview I've ever had in a vineyard, Jake Terrell from St Francis Winery and Vineyard, takes me through his experiences throughout California's prime vineyards. This interview has it all: earthquakes, historic vineyards, old-vine Zinfandel, Cabernet from Russian River Valley in Sonoma, strategies for reducing vineyard irrigation, and an epic Cannibas plantation.
I was particularly interested in having Jake share his expertise in caring for old vines, something he defines as planted before 1950. He did not disappoint and in our conversation he gives multiple tips on how to work with old vines with the goal of delivering the highest quality grapes, something for which Jake is focused at all points of the growing season. Beyond old vines we discuss how timing is critical for all high-end grapegrowing and he names the two most critically time-sensitive vineyard practices.
As a farmer who drinks a wide variety of wines, and has a keen fascination with the Old World, Jake paints a vivid picture in detailing the style for which the St Francis wines are known. The conversation finishes with an invitation to visit St Francis, which is in the Kenwood area of Sonoma. Need more reasons to visit? The winery's restaurant was rated number 1 restaurant in 2014 by Open Table, they are certified sustainable, and the North Bay Business Journal listed St Francis as one of the best places to work in the North Bay of San Francisco.