We started making wine in 1999 when Mats showed up at Ray's house with 1/2 ton of grapes and a used barrel from Etude. The grapes were from his patient at St. Francis Hospital (John Louvau). They got talking about wine and John suggested to Mats to try making some himself. We made wine in Ray's living room and in 2000 included a full barrel of Syrah from Watts Vineyard in Lodi. In 2003 we found John Pinder in a small warehouse in Campbell. It worked out like a charm. In 2005 we became fully bonded as Travieso. Our philosophy is to keep tight control over the grapes in the vineyard by purchasing only by the acre. Maintaining a close working relationship with the grower is key.
We harvest physiologically ripe and enjoy seeing long hang time when we can get it. We have seen others try to make French wine in CA, but we want to make California wine in CA. We use minimal sulfite addition during crush and allow many of our fermentations to take with wild yeast. Ferment times range from 7 to 18 days and we usually let the must rest for additional skin contact before pressing. We press into 30 to 50 percent new French Oak and let the wine age on the lees at least a year and sometimes for two. Our standard aging regimen is 24 months but some of our wine is held back an additional year for our 36 month barrel aging program.