The Evolution … from passion to lifestyle to business …
We began the new millennium following our infatuation with discovering wonderful small production wines by purchasing a home in Napa Valley. In 2003, after spending the previous 20 years building homes in beautiful Half Moon Bay CA, we began our search in the Napa Valley for property to build our own wine country getaway. The result of that search was a 15 acre vineyard planted with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes. Thus began our amazing headlong free-fall into the wine business. From taking classes to learn about our vineyard, to our first attempt at wine making, we were hooked.
Late in 2005, literally the day before we were to submit our building plans for a house on the 15 acres, a realtor friend presented us with the opportunity to purchase the former Koves-Newlan Winery. Building custom single-family homes requires starting over every couple of years, but we craved a business that we could grow and mature with while continuing to learn and evolve. Our passion for building homes turned into a desire to make the best wine that we could.
By the 2006 harvest, we had created a winery that excelled in helping several small artisan wineries produce their fine wines. In 2007 we built a tasting room providing visitors the opportunity to taste and purchase some fabulous small production wines made at our facility. Within two years, Wine Spectator referred to our winery as a “Hidden gem in Napa Valley”. During this time, we also created our Ideology label and as we originally believed, our Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard provided exquisite fruit for our wine. This prompted us to consider restructuring our business model to concentrate solely on our own label.
In 2009 we reconfigured the layout of the property, sold off the custom crush portion of the business, while keeping the best vineyards with space for a new winery. We are currently developing plans for a winery specifically for our Ideology Cellars label.
In 2010, our Estate Cabernet (2007) received 95 points from Wine Enthusiast and was #57 on their list of Top 100 Wines of the World. This convinced us that we needed a world-class winemaker. We were very fortunate to convince Gustavo Gonzalez to join our team. Having been the Reserve Red Wine maker for the Robert Mondavi Winery during his 16 years, Gustavo was also credited with making a perfect 100 point wine while he was the winemaker at Ornellaia in Italy. Just the guy we wanted to turn our fruit into the best wine possible.
With Gustavo’s help, we continue to work on the plans for our new winery facility.
The Evolution continues …
Bob & Joni