The Land Is Half The Story
Two of the most important factors for growing wine grapes are location and terrain. Alder Springs is ideally situated for both.
We're 150 miles north of San Francisco and 12 miles from the Pacific Ocean. Our extreme location and steep terrain has allowed us to choose the most beneficial growing condition for several different varietals. We have planted 31 individual blocks of vines – 140 acres in total – each in its ideal microclimate.
"There is no other place in the United States quite like Alder Springs Vineyard. The combination of coastal influence, altitude, excellent soils, and steep slopes is unique. I have pulled out vines here at Alder Springs that have deeper roots than vines twice their age that I worked with in Burgundy. All these things come together to make a wine that is memorable and unique."
But a great location isn't enough. To grow the grapes that meet our standards we constantly care for them.
Each of the vineyard's 315,000 vines is tended by a member of our specially trained crew. In some cases, as often as 13 times a year. Where appropriate we take a bonsai approach, plucking roughly three quarters of the fruit off of each cluster. It's a painstaking process than can take up to ten minutes of work on a single plant.
While most growers try to maximize the tonnage of grapes they produce, we strictly limit what a vine bears in order to concentrate the exquisite flavor in each grape.
The average California grower can expect a vine to yield between 10 and 50 pounds of fruit. On average ours produce just 2 1/2 pounds of grapes. That's enough for a single, spectacular bottle of wine.