(Contributed by Matt Medeiros) – I fell in love with wine when I was a teenager because we owned a family vineyard. Growing up around grapes, a vineyard located in the Russian River Valley AVA, with high quality Pinot Noir grapes was a great privilege. I got to see a lot of the work, time, and effort that goes into growing quality grapes for a well-known highly praised wine family. My dad basically managed the vineyard, and oversaw all vineyard operations, which gave a very intimate hands on opportunity to see what goes on. I was raised in Petaluma, so being a part of this region my whole life, I have seen the wine industry grow drastically just in my short period of time on this earth, and it is very exciting to see. Almost anywhere you go here in Napa and Sonoma Counties, it is a near guarantee that there is some sort of vines growing within a mile of where you are standing at all times.
It was easy for me to love wine because I love where I live, and the influence that wine has on where I live makes it a wonderful place to be. It’s also extremely beautiful just to drive through and see all the vineyards. All the different types of vine stocks carrying different varietals. There is just a certain vibe you get when entering the Sonoma Napa areas; the feeling of warm sunshine in the summertime, the occasional rain in the winter/spring, and the cool foggy mornings that are almost year round, makes this place a diverse Mediterranean climate, absolutely perfect for vineyards. The subtle changes that are “micro-climates” here also provide a great way to grow different varietals that thrive under certain weather circumstances. The atmosphere here is second to none in my book.
Growing up around a vineyard, here in Sonoma County has been an extreme privilege, and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. My love for wine truly derives from a combination of the magic that is the vibe when in this region, combined with my hands on vineyard experience. I am so lucky to have been put in the situation I am, and I am forever grateful.
NOTE: This blog posting was written as part of the Millennial series on “How I Fell in Love With Wine.”