When we moved into our Los Gatos home with a lovely 3 acre hillside view, we thought that the rolling green hills would last all year. Reality soon sunk in when those lovely green hills were replaced with brown grass, weeds and thistles for most of the summer and fall seasons. We tried desperately to control the weeds ourselves and with numerous gardeners who would inevitably quit the next day. We often thought that hillside was meant for something special, and a vineyard would be a much prettier view and it would be productive. Cody and Taylor must have been listening, because soon after thinking about a vineyard we received a mailing about Coastal Range Vineyards. We met with “the boys” and were very impressed with their experience and knowledge about starting and maintaining a vineyard. They were educated in real life and in universities and we felt completely at ease starting a relationship with them. It was clear that they knew how this all worked. Seven years later and we are ready to release our first year’s Cabernet Sauvignon, 2014. We have been blessed with fabulous Cabernet clones we selected with their help, the fertile hillside, our own unique microclimate, and with the fantastic Coastal Range Vineyard team, that our vines have become unbelievably PROLIFIC. Julie and Albert Prolific Vines Vineyard Los Gatos, CA
1803 vines, 100% Pinot Noir grapes. Close pack (8ftx3ft) Planted in ’14 on ~1 acre. We bought our ~17 acre property in ’08. The previous owners were using it as a horse farm, with fields of tall grass for the horses to graze on. In the 20th century it had been an orchard, and before that, in the 1890s it had been a vineyard. After we had settled in, we decided it would be nice to do something productive with the land, which might cover some of the costs of the operation, add value to the property, and be visually attractive. Because of the rising reputation of the Santa Cruz Mountains Appellation we thought a vineyard would be good, but we knew nothing about installing and managing one, so we talked to a number of friends, some whose vineyards succeeded and others whose vineyards failed. The difference was largely in how much expert help they got, so it was clear that we would need to get some expert assistance. When we asked both successful vineyard owners and viticulture experts in the area, many of them had very good things to say about Cody and Taylor Muhly of Coastal Range Vineyards, so we talked to them. Right at the start they were very helpful in teaching us the process of preparing the land, installing the stakes, wires, drip irrigation, and vines including the ongoing management of our vineyard. They were also very flexible, filling in with whatever installation and ongoing maintenance, we chose not to do. When we got started they were quite reasonable on the cost of installation. Together, we mapped out the vineyard. We had the land prepared, and they did the installation including getting the two grafted clones (667 and Swan) from UC Davis. They have continued to help us with the spraying, picking and pruning, while we maintain the groundcover, gophers and water system. They have even helped us find buyers for our grapes. In short, we have a beautiful and productive vineyard that in very large part due to the expertise, timely management and ongoing support of Coastal Range Vineyards. We would highly recommend them to anyone planning to install and manage a vineyard, whether you know what you are doing, but especially if you don’t. Thank-you, David, Larry & Diane Cooke, DaLarDi Vineyards
Whiskey Hill Road, Woodside Named after our oldest child, Nicole’s vineyard was planted when my daughter Nicole was 7 years old in 2004. At an elevation of 375 feet, it is southwest facing on a slightly sloped parcel planted in the French meter by 2 meter style, being 14 rows with 500 plants. In 2016, we yielded slightly more than 1 barrel of delicious fruit forward cabernet. Our original decision to plant was ascetics, “what do we do with this very visible piece of land” on our property?” However, over the years, we decided we really could take the wine to another level. That’s where Coastal Range Vineyards has come in; they oversee everything from farming to winemaking. They are very involved in every aspect, crop management, ground cover, barrel selection, wine making to bottling. Every year our wine becomes better! Can’t wait for this year’s bottling which has been in new French oak for the past 2 years. Cheers, The Schumacher’s
Ascona Vineyards is located In the Santa Cruz Mountains AVA, close to the town of Los Gatos and sited on 32 gently rolling acres on a mountain top above the fog at 2500 feet. First purchased because of the natural beauty of the property, we soon realized the site was perfect for the growing of world class wine grapes. The first 1 1/2 acres of vines were planted in 2001 with another 3 going in 2 years later. We are committed to growing fruit capable of producing wines of extraordinary quality and we continue to experiment with growing techniques that get us ever closer to that standard. The current crop encompasses grapes that the SCM are known for such as Pinot Noir as well as some unusual to SCM that we have found to do well in our soils, altitude, and other growing conditions such as Sangiovese, Syrah, Cab Franc, and Sauvignon Blanc. Increasing demand for our fruit has led to a decision to plant an additional 8 to 10 acres that we have initiated in 2017. Where possible, we favor long-term relationships with our winery partners, so that we can produce fruit that meets their unique requirements. Currently, we are planning our new vineyards in direct consultation with both Coastal Range and our winemaking partners. Coastal Range Vineyards is our partner for growing this extraordinary fruit, for helping us communicate effectively with and support our customers, and for planning to plantings. We have found Coastal Range Vineayrds to be unusually committed to the same quality goals that we embrace, and further, to staying abreast of the latest growing techniques that can get us ever closer to perfection. They operate at a scale that ensures that our crops not only get constant care during the growing season but also can be picked at a peak of readiness, in consultation of course with our winery partners. Besides all that, they are unusually pleasant and responsive to work with. Coastal Range Vineyards has also introduced us to a growing number of highly skilled winemakers interested in SCM fruit. We are excited to be working closely with CRV to plan our new blocks and to manage the installation of our new vineyards. David Nagel Proprietor, Ascona Vineyards
We planted our vineyard in 2002 on what had been an unused sloping area adjacent to our home in Portola Valley. As we were told at the time, you can think of a vineyard either as expensive agriculture or cheap landscaping. We wound up with about 125 vines, a Bordeaux mix of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Our first harvest party was in 2004, and it has since become an annual tradition for our family and friends, who help with the picking and crush and the bottling of the vintage from two years previously. Our "winery" is a prefab air-conditioned shed on our property, and a typical yield for us is about 1000 pounds of grapes and 25-30 cases of wine. The Coastal Range Vineyards team has been with us from the outset: planning and installing the vineyard, handling the elements that we don't want to do ourselves (e.g. trellis maintenance, spraying) and consulting with us on the elements where we want to be hands-on (e.g. pruning, winemaking). I value their expertise and responsiveness and flexibility. I have learned a lot from them over the years, and in the process, our vineyard has evolved from a landscaping project to a very enjoyable part of our lives." Bill and Mary Jane Kelly
In the late 1990s we were living in a nice, expanded ranch home on a 1/4 acre lot in Los Altos. We were hoping that we could find a home on a 1+ acre lot in Los Altos Hills that would be suitable for a small vineyard. We found such a place in 1999. Our lot included about a 1/4 acre of past-its-prime citrus orchard on a southwest facing modest slope with basic irrigation in place. During the next year we learned of, and met with, several companies who offered vineyard installation and management services. On the advice of one of our friends we made our choice and our 126 Cabernet sauvignon vines were planted by March, 2001. We concocted scores of possible names for our new vineyard, but finally chose Soaring Hawk to acknowledge the pair of red tailed hawks that ride the thermals above our vines throughout much of the day. Anxious to "get our feet wet" at winemaking, we made a small (1/4 barrel) batch of Cabernet from our 2002 fruit. We still have some of that wine in our cellar, and after 14 years it's still massively tannic. Over the years we have continued to be hands on participants in the management of our vineyard, while respecting the expertise and advice of our professional vineyard management teams. We've learned a lot along the way, including the skill sets and level of expertise that come with top notch vineyard management. We found that level of skill and knowledge a couple of years ago when we met the team the makes up Coastal Range Vineyards. From the moment of our first meeting it was apparent to us that they possessed the know how to make our vineyard the best that it can be, improving the overall health of the vines, and both the quality and quantity of our fruit. They have tailored their approach to optimize our harvest and have dealt creatively with some of the unique challenges that our site has posed. On top of all that, all of their team are just plain fun to work with. So, as we prepare for our 17th leaf, we are confident that our friends at Coastal Range Vineyards will continue to help us strive to make that barrel of Cabernet Sauvignon that will please and delight our most discerning friends. Cheers, and thanks to our friends at Coastal Range Vineyard. Dave & Susanne Scott Soaring Hawk Vineyard
We purchased our house in May of 2014 and the previous owners had used Coastal Range Vineyards to plant and maintain the vines. We were in year 3 when we moved in and just harvested this year. Also, when we moved in, we looked at a few other vineyard management companies as well to see what was available to us. However, we LOVE CRV. They handle 100% of maintenance and now harvesting, winemaking and bottling. They have been outstanding to work with. Attentive, educational (we have zero experience with this and Cody and Peter have spent hours with us bringing us up to speed) and outstanding service. Whether it's getting nets up, spotting ground squirrels, challenge spots from lawn watering, weeding, etc, they are all over it. I give them an A - solid A - and I am a tough services provider grader. I think they provide excellent value for what we spend. Not only would I use them again, but I wouldn't switch! Couldn't recommend anyone more than I do them. Kirk and Jackie Perry The Covenant Wine
Our vineyard journey started out as a grove of olive trees. My husband, who would love nothing better than to grow his own olives and press his own oil, was sadly disappointed to find out our property, located in the Santa Cruz Mountains, was not in the least supportive for olives. However, it was “world class” for growing chardonnay and pinot. All I could say at this point in our journey was, “Praise the Lord!” I love wine. For more than a decade, I have wanted to grow grapes on our property and now we had confirmation. What to do next? Google of course. I have no idea what I searched for, but I eventually found a company to help us start our vineyard but of course, as providence would have it, they did not serve our area and recommended we contact Coastal Range Vineyards! What a godsend! Cody Muhly came to our place and educated us on the entire process. First off, he recommended we fence off our property to protect against the deer and recommended a company we went with and have since hired for other fence repair. Next, a proposal was given detailing each step needing to be taken to bring about our vineyard. After much prayer, we were on board. It was the fall of 2014 and California was in a drought. Who in their right mind would plant a vineyard in a drought? Planting would not actually start until the spring so we were buying ourselves some time and hoping for the best. We definitely had a peace about moving forward. Once the contract was signed, our site was prepared, our soil analyzed, and our vineyard designed. Next came the trellis installation and irrigation. How exciting! The crew working our place was amazing. They started early, worked hard, and were so efficient. It was a joy watching them work and seeing our vineyard materialize before our eyes. Now we had to wait until the spring to actually plant the vines… which meant more decisions had to be made. As a side, I want to share a little story about going above and beyond. Our vineyard infrastructure was in place. It was now December and we received a call from Cody letting us know that a large storm was on its way and with the steep slope in part of our vineyard, he advised we place waddles in specific places to reduce erosion! He gave us the option of doing it ourselves but of course we took up his offer to get it done for us then BOOM it was done, either that day or the next morning. It had to be done quickly and it was. Those waddles saved us and we didn’t even know we needed saving. This is just one of numerous unexpected services Coastal Range Vineyards has shown us. So now on to the vines. Being a red wine kind of gal, we decided on planting Pinot, but what variety? Of course we wanted quality wine which required quality grapes yet we were novices, what to do? Coastal Range Vineyards to the rescue! We had so many questions. Root stock, clones, organic/non-organic, north/south verses east/west - yikes! Cody was so patient and quick at replying to our questions and clarifying our misconceptions. He offered several suggestions on clones which would do well in our soil, but he also had gotten to know us a bit better and knew we needed a bit more info to help us decide, so he recommended we visit Heart O’ The Mountain, a vineyard in the same micro-climate and elevation as ours and not too far away as the crow flies. We contacted this vineyard and were overwhelmed with the owner’s willingness to see us and his graciousness at educating us. Heart O’ The Mountain grows five varietals of pinot. Bob Brassfield, the owner, opened his heart and his barrels to us! We sampled each variety and then mixed some together. We were blown away - were all the people in this industry so nice? We decided on two varietals which tasted wonderful on their own and exceptional when mixed. The CRV team concurred. Planting time came around sooner than we knew. Once again, Coastal Range Vineyards was here on time and ready to work. Taylor Muhly contacted us to let us know our vines had arrived and would all be planted in one day. He was right, 650 vines were planted in mid May, 2015, the drip system was tested and set to bi-weekly water, grow tubes were placed on each vine, and since we are hands-on kind of people, we were shown how it all worked. Our vineyard felt like our baby. We would listen in the night to hear the drip system go off and look for new growth. We knew the first two years (yes we are novices) would require watering, weeding and watching, so when issues arrived, we would email Coastal Range Vineyards and they would be prompt in taking on the issue usually the next day or calling us and walking us through how to fix the problem (popped irrigation line for example). The weeds, well, try as we might, we could not keep up with the weeding so on an as needed basis, we would call Coastal Range and they would be out weed whacking the vineyard. They worked fast and efficiently, this speed was unexpected - no dilly dallying. Cody worked with us on an alternative to Roundup and showed us that it would actually be cheaper than weed whacking! We love how they have their customers’ best interest in mind! We feel like part of a team effort and this is comforting in our journey to becoming wine producers. We have interacted with Ken a few times but this last year, we have been working mostly with Peter and crew. Peter, like Cody, Taylor, and Ken, knows vines and more importantly, wines! We love interacting with Peter when he comes to check on or work in our vineyard. He is a wealth of knowledge and takes pride in his winemaking ability. We have complete confidence that one day, in the not too distant future, we will be tasting our own "home grown" wine and it will taste superb. We have nothing but gratitude for Coastal Range Vineyards. They havce been with us every step of the way in our journey toward becoming a wine-producing vineyard.