Our friend Jake Zylstra invited us up to the vineyards of Solminer Wines in Los Olivos, where he introduced us to the natural wine movement fermenting along the central coast of California. To return the favor we kitted Jake out with key styles from our SS18 collection and traded a little R&D: wine tasking and gear testing.
After spending a couple foggy mornings, splendid days, and mellow evenings with Jake and Solminer Wine owner, David DeLanda, we saw first hand how natural and organic farming practices yield much more than trendy bragging rights.
David explained how, "If you control what your sheep and donkeys eat, you control what they produce, and what they produce turns into your fertilizer, your fertilizer then shapes the soil, which is one of the key aspects in how wine taste varies.”
Jake hand sprays homemade fertilizer from his antique looking copper tank. He explained that the copper was an essential detail. “If we were to use plastic, wood, or even some other metals, over time the the fertilizer solution could be contaminated by some of the particles.” Witnessing how every detail of the wine production was obsessively considered and optimized, and after tasting the results, it was no mystery how Solminer has developed a stellar reputation after only six years of operation.
At the end of the day, over a glass of the famous Solminer Syrah, we asked Jake about his thoughts on the Coldsmoke gear he'd been working in. He described it as “functional, without looking functional.” Exactly what we wanted to hear.
Visit Solminer Wine at Solminer.com