02 Abacela - A Vineyard and Winery Under the Oregon Sun - Earl and Hilda Jones
The Abacela story includes a lucky find of landscape along a fault line created by the “collision of the ancient Klamath Mountains with the youthful Coastal Range” thus allowing a variety of terroirs. “The joining of three mountain ranges, the Klamath, the Coastal, and the Cascades in the Umpqua Valley produces a unique and complex geology.” In the estate Benchlands vineyard are planted the flagship Tempranillo, Malbec, and Dolcetto. The hot estate Southern Slopes are planted to Syrah, Garnacha, Tannat, and Portuguese grapes and the cool Northern Slopes are dedicated to Albariño, Muscat, and Grenache for the Rosé. “At 43° North in southern Oregon, the prevailing winds and topography interact to create a Mediterranean wine climate.” If you plan to visit Abacela, check out the events page ahead of time for fun ideas.
03 Napa Valley’s Starfield Vineyards Launches Sinton Family’s Return to Wine Roots – Tom Sinton
Starfield Vineyards recently launched its portfolio of five limited production wines from Napa Valley and Bordeaux. Founded in 2011 by father-son team, Tom and Rob Sinton, Starfield Vineyards produces wines sourced from select cooler vineyard sites in premier winegrowing regions. The Sinton family has been involved in the wine business for four generations with ties to Napa Valley icon Louis Martini. According to Tom Sinton, “For us, a ‘Star Field’ is a unique site where fruit can develop the optimal balance of aroma, flavor and texture. Rob and I seek three characteristics in sourcing fruit for our wines – cooler climate, hillsides with rocky soils and terrific viticulture. The inaugural releases include 2011 The Starbeam, a Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon; 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot blend; 2013 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc; 2011 Cuvée À Droite, a Bordeaux blend from Saint-Emilion; and 2011 Cuvée À Gauche, a Bordeaux blend from the Medoc.
04 Napa Valley and Bordeaux Consults Help Craft Initial Release of Starfield Vineyards Wines – Tom Sinton
The Sintons work with noted winemaking consultants in Napa Valley and Bordeaux to produce Starfield Vineyards wines. Kian Tavakoli consults on the Napa wines, and a team of three collaborate on the Bordeaux offerings: Eric Boissenot of Laboratoire Oenologique Boissenot, enologist for many First Growths; Stéphane Derenoncourt of Derenoncourt Consultants on the vineyard selection; and Château Lynch-Bages winemaker, Nicolas Labenne. The Sinton family involvement in the wine industry began in 1919 when Tom’s grandfather, Dee Sinton, founded an early California winery and later partnered with Louis Martini in The Louis M. Martini Grape Products Company during Prohibition. In 1972, Tom began his winegrowing career planting his family’s 200-acre Shell Creek Vineyard in San Luis Obispo. He then went on to found ProBusiness, a payroll and human resources outsourcing firm, which he took public in 1997 and sold in 2003 with the goal of returning to the wine industry. Rob Sinton, his son, is a recent graduate of University of California at Davis’ Viticulture and Enology program.