Kanzler Estate Vineyard

When it was planted in 1996, Kanzler Estate was one of the first vineyards in the rolling hills southwest of the picturesque town of Sebastopol in western Sonoma County. Only eight miles from the Pacific Ocean, the area was long thought to be too cool and foggy for grape growing. But the site proved to be ideal for the notoriously difficult to grow Pinot Noir grape. Pinot prefers a cool climate and reaches exceptional expression in the well-drained Goldridge soils predominant here. Here, the long summer days are sunny but tempered by cooling afternoon breezes from the ocean nearby. Most nights the fog rolls in to further cool the vines, allowing the grapes to ripen slowly and develop the deep, complex and concentrated flavors for which our grapes are known.

We planted the vineyard on our gentle east-facing slope after doing extensive research. Although we did not come to the project with farming experience, Steve took a crash course in viticulture that included classes at UC Davis and Santa Rosa Junior College and conversations with countless vineyard owners and winemakers who generously shared their time and expertise. He researched rootstocks and clones, eventually choosing several to match the site’s soil and diverse microclimates. The last piece fell into place when Steve met Eric Neil and asked him to become our vineyard manager.

For both land stewardship and flavor, the vineyard is dry farmed and we use organic methods.

Vineyard Specs

Russian River Valley
Year Planted
Total Acreage
Goldridge sandy loam on Wilson Grove formation
101-14, 1103P, 420A
Pinot Noir (Dijon 667, 115, Pommard 4)
Vertical Shoot Positioned, cane pruned
Vineyard Manager
Eric Neil

The Vineyards