Hey, SoCal friends! If you missed last year's inaugural Nat Diego festival, now's your chance to come have a taste on July 27-28 – this year's will bring more than 60 producers from around the world to America's Finest City for two days of sun, fun, and natural wine. We'll be there chatting on winemaker panels; pouring the goods; and hanging out with all you beautiful people. Take a look at the schedule below, and grab your tickets while they last!
Here's the story.
Many thanks to the wonderful city of Charleston, SC, and the organizers of Charleston Wine + Food Festival, for hosting us as a 2018 featured winery! It was an absolutely fantastic time; packed with events, incredible food, and the nicest people you could ever want to meet. Below: a few of our favorite moments from the whirlwind week. Cheers!
Did we say Chardonnay? We might have. Not on purpose, you see, but when a vineyard calls out to you, well, if you're lucky, you accept the honor of working with whatever it has to offer.
So much California, here. Oh, our beautiful, beloved, golden state. These Gold Country vines are 43 years old, and have forged their whole lives plunging roots into limestone and schist; weathering the regular 50+-degree diurnal shifts of the Murphys climate (HOT in the day and COLD in the night); shrugging off fires and frost like nobody's business.
The wine their gorgeous fruit from 2016 made in our cellar is GROWN, y'all, with no time for any nonsense. So don't bring any. Just get it if you want it. This is liquid gold; 100 percent
C A L I F O R N I A L O V E.
- neutral-barrel fermented
- full malolactic
- 13 percent alcohol
- 48 cases produced
- lord do we love this wine
- coming to the mailing list July 24
- sign up if you'd like some
It's event season! March will bring all sorts of delightful fun in which our fellow Californians (and those visiting from parts elsewhere) can come and drink the wines with us, out and about. First stop: our beloved Bay Area for Brumaire weekend! Here's what's up:
Friday, March 10, 6-9pm: Winemaker dinner at Del Popolo, San Francisco. We'll be there to meet and greet all evening; the three new spring-release wines will be available by the glass AND to take home at retail pricing. Get on out and drink the Naughty Goblin Bubbles with a pizza!
Saturday, March 11, 2pm: We return to Table Wine, our favorite wine shop in all of Pacifica, to join the beautiful Brookshire family and pour the new releases in-store. Come have a taste! TW is the very first retailer in the area to get their hands on these wines.
Sunday, March 12, 12-5pm: Brumaire. We're pouring alongside a crew of natural winemakers from near and far at this event; it's sold out, but they're keeping a waiting list.
More appearances are coming up in San Diego and Los Angeles; stay tuned, and come out!
Each year, the strands of globe lights strung under the patio cover in our backyard prove irresistible to hummingbirds looking for a perfect place to build a nest and raise a family. Our yard is full of blooming flowers, their sweet nectar a lifeline for these hard-working mama birds. The latest nest yielded one baby bird, who's getting bigger and bigger by the day; it'll be learning to fly just in time for spring.
We're almost all set to send our latest fledglings out of the winery nest and into the world, as well. Three delightful, fresh wines from the 2016 vintage, perfect for the warm, longer days ahead, will launch the week of February 13. In the spirit of springtime, we're very excited to share these with everyone! If you'd like to know more, join the mailing list to receive the release email.
Happy Spring and Only Love,
Emily & Jody
We wish everyone a wonderful season, and can't wait to bring you all sorts of deliciousness in 2017. Hug your dear ones extra tightly; open that special bottle you've tucked away; take a leap of faith. Now and always, love and only love.
What a whirlwind! Once harvest begins, it's all a blur of hello-goodbye-take-the-kids-to-school-and-do-punchdowns (not to mention scheduling logistics, driving trucks hundreds of miles, cleaning equipment, sorting, foot-treading, pressing, fixing something or other, cleaning again) ... that's where we are at the moment, working hard to make the new wines. Oh, and to release some that are ready to meet you, too! Read all about our newly released goodies ... we'd love to share them with you.
So! June was absolutely packed with California wine events! We've chronicled each of them here, so that if you missed anything, well, it'll be almost like you were there... just without the food and wine (sorry).
June 25-26: Wine Not! at Ace Hotel & Swim Club,
June 18: Tehachapi Grain Project Fundraiser
by MAGO Events, Culver City
June 11: Outstanding in the Field Dinner, Aguanga
June 7: Pairing Dinner at Barbrix, Los Angeles
We're happy to confirm that for the third year running, there will once again be Riesling pét-nat fizz; with a little help from our friends, we managed to wrest the 2015 Cobolorum/Naughty Goblin Bubbles into bottle to officially close out the harvest season. The baby bubbles are tucked away now for a long winter's nap to complete their conditioning, so keep your eyes open for a spring 2016 release. As properly befits the Goblin, this version's capped with a GREEN crown. Green and gold and glorious goodness!
We're headed toward the final pick of Harvest 2015 now; since the last update, we've brought in beautiful Syrah from Alamo Creek Vineyard in Santa Maria, which was deftly foot-trod this year by the boys of the j.brix crew. It'll be completely whole-cluster fermented for the first time since 2011; the fermentation already has a deliciously savory aroma, tempered with dusky rose petals.
For the fourth year, we welcomed San Diego's McCormick Ranch Carignan to the winery. The rustic survivor vines at the base of Palomar Mountain ripened earlier than ever before; the San Diego Union-Tribune was there to document the story.
Everything's progressing wonderfully in the winery, and though yields are down across the board in all of our vineyards, we're expecting great structure and flavor from the vintage. If you're in the San Diego area and would like to taste with us, please come on out to The 3rd Corner Encinitas on Tuesday, September 15 between 5-7pm. We'll be pouring lots of treats, including the brand new, as-yet-unreleased vintage of the Rougarou Carignan, the U-T's Wine of the Week. Hope to see you all there!
Harvest Update #2: One of our favorite picks every year, the fifth J.Brix/Forlorn Hope Kick On Ranch Riesling Goblin grab on September 1 did not go off without a hitch (it NEVER goes off without a hitch), but the fruit is oh, so lovely and delicious; I'm sure in a few days, we'll forget all about the grumbling and the grumpy winemaker vineyard faces (no photos of those). Our 2015 Goblin (form of: The Augur & Cobolorum for J.Brix; Amerikanischen Kobold & a to-be-released serious sparkler for FH) is going to make some really exciting wines. As it does.
We ushered in the 2015 vintage - our seventh year of winemaking! - on August 19, with Pinot noir from Kick On Ranch Vineyard in Los Alamos, and Pinot gris from Sierra Madre Vineyard in Santa Maria. As we made our way up Highway 101 in the refrigerated truck the night before, a sliver of a crescent moon hung in the sky, smiling on the fruit's final night on the vines. This growing year seemed the quickest yet; it has been quite a few years since we felt Fall come before the fruit. The grapes are lovely, with tiny clusters and berries. We expect the 2015 wines to be truly delicious. And now, onward to the next pick!
Well, unlike some of our northern winemaking friends, we made it to August without a pick, but now it's time to wash the bins and forget about sleep for awhile... all signs point to T-minus one week (or so) until our harvest begins. The first pick's been steadily earlier each year since 2011, as the warming weather's brought both early spring budbreak, and accelerated ripening. We live by the season; an entire growing year culminates here. Watch this space for updates (and for more immediate gratification, our Facebook, Instagram & Twitter)!
Sunshine and pink wine? Yes, please. Friends, the Uncontainable v.2014 is about to launch, and summer's about to get that much better. In its fifth incarnation, the vinous expression of That Which Cannot Be Held Captive is, perhaps, the most delicious yet. Lightly foot-trod and pressed to neutral French oak, this one made us wait. But don't you wait, if you'd like to get your hands on it; a mere 99 cases are all that exist. Mailing list members get the first chance, so join if you haven't!
The vines are fully awake now, stretching out their arms, boldly flinging leaves and flowers toward the sun. It is time to grow.
They are vulnerable, and tender. With each sunrise and sunset, they build strength, laying the path for the delicious things to come. It is all they know. It is life. It is.
Hello, friends! We're setting out for a few glorious days in San Francisco, with tasting appointments April 8 & 9 (trade: email Scanny if you're keen). It's one of our most favorite places. We were born to fall in love!
Sunday, March 29: Come on out and see us, along with lots of other small-production wineries, at The Garagiste Festival in Solvang. It's going to be all kinds of fun! The Santa Barbara Independent thinks so, too. We're pouring FIVE delicious things:
- 2014 Nomine Amoris Pinot Gris Rosé, Kick On Ranch
- 2013 The Augur Riesling, Kick On Ranch
- 2013 Audire Pinot Noir, Kick On Ranch
- 2013 Rougarou Carignan, McCormick Ranch (San Diego County!), AND
- the no-wallflower-but-never-ostentatious secret-life-of-the-party, our newly released 2013 La Libresca Grenache, a Santa Barbara Highlands beauty.
Perhaps, under the table, will be these for those who ask nicely:
NAUGHTY GOBLIN BUBBLES. Come and get 'em.
We're busy these days at the winery getting ready for a bottling run that will include something for just about everyone, whatever your pleasure, so if you haven't yet joined the mailing list, get on it to have first dibs on the deliciousness!
Plus, we still have a very little bit of Pinot Noir, Carignan & Riesling left in the cellar, which you can order here.
Cheers to you from the j.brix crew,
Emily & Jody
Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard. Doves, at daybreak. (Could Grenache be coming to your glass soon? Maybe so...)
Fresh off pouring at the whirlwind Opening Round tasting of the Garagiste Festival (so nice to meet so many new friends of the j.brix!), we're greatly anticipating the holiday season and all the delicious food and wine it promises. We'd be happy to have our wines on your holiday table, and so we've put together a little offering that provides a wine to pair with every flavor you'll be cooking up.
Riesling and Pinot Noir; holiday classics, to be sure, and ours are so food-friendly, you'll want to refill your glass a time or two throughout the meal. At just 11.2 and 12 percent alcohol, respectively, you can enjoy without wooziness. Carignan is likely to be a newcomer to your table, and with its warmth and structure, will deftly handle anything that's roasted. (Also, we made just 57 cases, and it's nearly sold out.) California, order yours here - the forecast looks great, so as of now, we can ship without delay. Happy holidays!