Almost 20 years ago, we began to look for a rural setting as a retreat from the hustle and bustle of city and careers when we came across a small home and piece of land in the Napa Valley. We planted our first Chardonnay vineyard in the Oak Knoll district, north of Napa.
We used a new Dijon clone and also broke Napa tradition by close-row planting, which required that the vineyard be entirely hand tended. In other words, no tractors. Randy Lewis, an ultra-premium winemaker in the valley, showed immediate interest. Every year, the Chardonnay he has made using that fruit has received stratospheric scores.
Taking the next step, we acquired a much larger vineyard about a mile from the first one. After substantial improvements to drainage and vine care, we were rewarded with excellent Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Pinot Noir. We have planted more Chardonnay as well.
Initially, we sold all of our fruit to top wineries like Lewis Cellars and Mumm. Now we have certain rows or blocks that we retain to make wine for our “LOBO” label. Annually, we produce about 100 tons of grapes.
In 2007, we found our dream property on Atlas Peak, 42 acres on the eastern ridge of the Napa Valley. In addition to indescribable views, the 1350 foot elevation along with rocky, volcanic soil and southwestern sun exposure make ideal conditions for superlative Cabernet Sauvignon.
The LOBO wines now include Chardonnay, a Rose of Pinot Noir, a proprietary Red Blend called “HOWL,” Pinot Noir and two Cabs–one from the valley floor and one from Atlas Peak. Randy Lewis makes the Chardonnay for LOBO and rising star, Victoria Coleman, makes the rest.
We are also now part-owners of a wonderful winery–The Caves At Soda Canyon–with 20,000 square feet bored into the mountaintop overlooking Napa’s Stags Leap appellation. It’s a great place to tour and taste.
Inspired by a family trip to Provence, this Rosé is made from some of our favorite Pinot Noir grapes at our Oak Knoll vineyard. Crafted with whole cluster press and fermented in stainless steel, we leave skins on just long enough to produce the beautiful salmon color and age 50% of it in neutral French oak barrels, providing texture. It is allowed to retain its natural bright acidity keeping it crisp and clean, with modest alcohol level.
This vintage year’s production was increased from previous years to keep up with the growing demand for this exceptionally refreshing and crisp wine. Perfect porch/patio or pool “pounder” and pairs with the widest array of cuisine.
2016 Napa Valley Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon
Grown on rocky volcanic hillsides at 1350″ elevation in Napa’s “Atlas Peak” appelation, the estate grown vines that produce this wine must struggle. Yields are lower but the fruit quality is exceptional. The concentrated flavors of blackberry and boysenberry meld with an assortment of spices, espresso and cocoa for an absolutely delicious wine. Small amounts of Merlot and Petit Verdot, grown at the same site for blending versatility, add color, structure and silkiness to the finished product. In addition to the 94+ pts from Wine advocate, the wine receicved 93 pts from James Suckling and 92 pts from the Wine Spectator, all confirming its extraordinary quality.
2017 Napa Valley Pinot Noir
2019 Napa Valley Chardonnay
A warm and welcoming nose of creme brulee, toasted pineapple, and fresh apple pie. Its richness allows decadence with balance. Warm baking spices lead the palate with a zing of ginger, elevated by the acidity. Flavors of vanilla custard, lime zest, lemon curd, vanilla bean and fresh apple pie with some luscious tropical fruit and crumbles of toasted hazelnut.