Kanzler Estate Vineyard

When it was planted in 1996, Kanzler Estate was one of the first vineyards in the rolling hills southwest of the small 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, which prefers a cool climate and especially the well-drained Goldridge soils that are predominant here. In this picturesque, hilly region 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.

Our vineyard, which blankets a gentle east-facing slope that reaches 330 feet at the top, was planted after extensive research on our part. Although we did not come to this 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 diverse microclimates and Goldridge soils. The last piece fell into place when Steve met Eric Neil and asked him to become our vineyard manager.

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