The Winery and Winemaking

wine grapesThis year, the grape harvest has been a roller coaster for the growers and winemakers; we are just about finished winemaking at the winery!

We will be processing our last 3 tons of Cabernet Sauvignon the first week of November, which is late but mother nature runs the show.


This year we hand made and crafted wine from:

  • 4 Tons of Pinot Noir from Los Alamos CA,
  • 3 Tons of Merlot from Dry Creek Sonoma,
  • 2 Tons of Malbec from Happy Canyon, Santa Barbara,
  • 3 Tons of Cabernet Sauvignon from Templeton Gap in Paso Robles and,
  • 1 Ton of Syrah from Napa.

We were hoping for 17 tons of grapes this year, but yields were light but the fruit quality was very good.

Northern CA had poor weather during fruit bud and set which lead to a lot of shot berries. The fruit was clean of any form of rot or mildew; though we did have a 9″ alligator lizard in one of the fruit bins. Personally I think a lizard is definitely considered MOG (material other than grape) and was safely removed and now happily resides in SoCal.

barrels in the winery
Barrels in the Winery

In total we processed 26,000 pounds of fruit which will yield about 820 cases of wine. Not bad for the first year of the winery. We learned a lot; especially about space management and how to efficiently move things around in a small space. Thanks to everyone who offered suggestions and process improvements.


Wine Blending and Custom Label:

In the spring we will begin sampling and blending. This is a great time to take our Wine Blending Class and produce your own custom blend of wine.

How many of your friends have their own private wine label?

wine blending at the winery
Blending Classes at the winery

I want to thank everyone who attended the wine making classes; I hope you learned something and that you want to come back and learn about the entire wine making process.

Now we let the wine sleep in the barrels. Like parents of newborn children, we will check on the wine while it sleeps to make sure it grows up into a wonderful creation.

We say goodbye to the 1:00am or 4:00am punch-downs for this season and begin to plan for the 2016 season which is right around the corner.


Lisa and Darius Miller

P.S. Now is a great time to come visit the winery in Carmel Mountain just south of Rancho Bernardo.