Living on Sand:
Iíve surfed longer than Iíve made wine and Iíve made wine professionally for 30+ years. In 2000 I moved to the coast, declaring I wanted to live exclusively on the small strip on land that lies between the Pacific Coast Highway and the Pacific Ocean.
Leaving Napa or The Road to Santa Cruz:
I said goodbye to Napa and its great Cabernet vineyards and accepted a position at a winery on the west side of Santa Cruz. This is where the hippies, surfers, software engineer, pseudo-Sandinistas, Feng Shui consultants and UC professors all start their day by inching through the congestion on Mission Street.
My co-workers and I spent many lunch breaks surfing at Four Mile or Mitchellís Cove. Before returning to work, we would rinse the salt and sand out of our hair with the hot water from the cellar. We built a surfboard shaping room at the back of the winery and often would shape boards well into the night.
Surfers Drink Zinfandel Ė Itís a Fact
Winemakers want to make wines for their friends and I have found at post-surf barbeques most surfers gravitate towards Zinfandel. The wine needs to hold its own through talk of drops and airs, haoles and groms, and unidentified fins. What attracts the watermen and waterwomen is the forward fruit and spice and the welcomed hit of warming alcohol after a day in the cold Pacific. Or it could be that Zinfandel is reasonably priced and totally unpretentious.
This wine is a blend of several vineyards just North West of the town of Lodi. I estimate the average age of the vines, based on the amount of overall gnarl, between 40 and 50 years. (Old Vines really help concentrate the spicy aromas, ripe flavors and complex character.) This wine was fermented in a traditional California fashion. It was pumped over three times a day and fermented dry on skins. The wine was aged in relatively neutral oak barrels and bottled after 11 months.
This is How It Tastes:
The 2014 Rail 2 Rail Zinfandel is deep, rich, juicy, silky and delicious. Personal experience has shown us it is the perfect aftermath to a long, hard day on the board.
Composition: 95% Zinfandel (Lodi), 5% Tannat (Monterey)
Suggested Retail: $16/bottle
Owner/Winemaker: Eric Laumann
Phone: (831) 262-6126 email: email@example.com
Whatís in a Name:
Surfing rail to rail is a technique that maximizes speed on a wave, enabling the surfer to unleash cutbacks and aerials, sprays and vertical snaps.
2014 Old Vine Zinfandel
Gold Medals at Orange County Wine Competition and San Francisco International Competition