The Ballard Canyon Bottle: Syrah Identity for the Syrah Territory


Ballard Canyon, the only American Viticultural Area dedicated to Syrah, now has its own custom bottle. The words BALLARD CANYON encircle the shoulder of the glass, with the letters raised above the surface. Only Syrah will be put in this new bottle, honing Ballard Canyon’s identity for the varietal, which accounts for over half of the planted acreage in the AVA. The Ballard Canyon Winegrowers’ Read More →

Fighting for Balance in the Drought and Heat


  The entire vineyard has entered a finish-line sprint to harvest. We recorded only 6.5 inches of rain this winter and the vines sensed the dryness even before budding. Shoots grew quickly, but then stopped, transferring energy earlier than normal to ripening fruit. Without water, the vines work to ripen the grapes quickly, before they run out of energy. We are seeing Verasion all over Read More →

Grenache Noir = Grenache Nouveau


Over the past few years, Grenache has quietly gone through a revolution in California and Stolpman Vineyards’ program mirrors the change. Jon Bonne wrote an article back in March of 2011 {READ ARTICLE} about Grenache’s promising future and followed up on the varietal earlier this year {READ ARTICLE} Friends like Russell From of Herman Story make Grenaches so juicy and inviting, they’re hard not to like. The Read More →

Mother Vine’s Offspring: The Second Generation


The most revolutionary vineyard block at Stolpman looks great in its second year! B A C K G R O U N D Ruben planted the Mother Vine Syrah cutting on February 15th, 2013. The Mother Vine, the healthiest of 50 special cuttings, grew alone on the hillside in order to leave room for its expansion. In March of 2014, Ruben, aided by his 4 year Read More →

Peerless Wine: 2012 Estate Syrah


T H E  L E A D  U P 2012 was a dream vintage in which nature seemingly telegraphed every move. Ruben and Sashi coordinated La Cuadrilla in routine all-night pickings through late October to deliver fruit at the peak of bright-ripeness. When Ruben Solorzano handed off the last load of 2012 Syrah to Sashi Moorman he reported to me with a broad smile “I gave Read More →

Ballard Canyon Chardonnay: The AVA’s Poster Child of Diversity


C H A R D O N N A Y Looking up and down the California Coast, the best Chardonnay vineyards are planted in cool climates, usually right up against the Pacific. Most assume Ballard Canyon lies too far inland for great Chardonnay, but all bets are off when it comes to the East-West Santa Ynez Valley maritime chute. When Wes Hagen wrote Ballard Canyon’s Read More →



B A C K G R O U N D Tales of old Tuscan wines inspired us to make the 2013 Carbonic Sangiovese. Traditionally, villagers didn’t want to wait for their wine to age in order to enjoy. Their solution was simple: press wine before the end of fermentation to avoid rough tannins on the finish. The Italians apparently didn’t mind sacrificing the deep color Read More →



A once in a lifetime opportunity! 12 different bottles ranging from 12 to 17 years old pre-tasted and packaged to enjoy velvety, integrated, and mature. For our customers who don’t have the patience to age their wines or for those new to wine collecting; this mixed case instantly creates a deep cellar! $40 per bottle for non-club members and $30/bottle for club members these wines Read More →

Ruben’s 2014 Gamble


While we live through yet another season of frost danger, Ruben boldly risks devastating losses in the name of quality. In early April, Ruben commanded La Cuadrilla to pass through every block of Syrah and nip off secondary clusters. All that remains: just one tiny grape cluster per shoot. By doing this before bloom, when the green orbs flower into even smaller grapes, Ruben concentrates Read More →

Cool Climate is Perfect Climate for Syrah. Period.


Proof that Cool Climate is the Perfect Climate for Syrah? Over the past fourteen years, Sashi Moorman has become more confident in our maturing vineyard. Gradually, he has asked Ruben Solorzano to pick earlier in the season. The resulting Syrahs show off our bright, balanced, Limestone-driven fruit profile. In the winery, Sashi slowly decreased the amount of new French Oak and increased percentages of whole-cluster Read More →