2018 marks Bargetto Winery's 85th anniversary! As one of the oldest top 10 wineries in California, and with bragging rights as the most historic winery in the Santa Cruz Mountains area, Bargetto winery has much to celebrate!
John Bargetto, Director of Winemaking, shared with me some of the family history...”In 1020 the immigrant brothers purchased a 4 acre parcel along the Soquel Creek, which is the current Bargetto Winery property. Then in 1922 they bought a 52 acre site in the hills above the winery.”
During Prohibition, the brothers continued to make and sell wine on a somewhat friend-to-friend basis. But even with the low-key operation, there was a police raid on the Bargetto's winery in 1926—complete with costly fines. That's all part of the family history. And if you like history, the current John Bargetto has written and published a book on the Bargetto's family and winemaking history complete with historic local pictures and details (available for purchase in the tasting room.)
Throughout Bargetto's story you'll see innovative winery practices. In the late 1950s John's father, Larry Bargetto, was offering complementary tastings at the winery—unheard of at the time. And from the very beginning the Bargettos had labeled their wines by varietal.
This was a new idea in the wine industry,
not yet trending at the time.
In a nod to the winery's roots, they've brought back the original label art from the 1940s for the Retro Label line of wines. These budget friendly, everyday wines are sold in local stores, and great for a grab-and-go on the way to a dinner, a picnic, or a community meal.
Look for Merlot, Zinfandel, Chardonnay, a
cost-friendly Pinot Noir, and best seller, Pinot Grigio.
Bargetto's Reserve wines are sourced form their very own Regan Estate Vineyards in Corralitos, and thoughtfully named after John Bargetto's mother, Beverly Regan. Premium grapes for their Reserve Estate wines and over 12 varietals/clones are grown on the 40 acre vineyard with sloping views of the Monterey Bay. Other accolades; the vineyard was Certified California Sustainable this year.
While all the wines are special to Bargetto's, I had the impression the grand dame of the wine family is the Pinot Noir. A Reserve Pinot Noir is made each year and exemplifies the terroir and persona of the vineyard. The latest release will be a “Dijon clone” and will play tribute to Bargetto's 85th anniversary. The Regan Vineyard's warm days, cool nights, and long temperate growing season are ideal for growing Pinot Noirs with layers of flavor.
The handful of times I've been to Bargetto's, the tasting room staff are always welcoming and friendly. There's a calmness to the property; set along the stream with outdoor seating areas and trees arcing this way and that. The winery also hosts weddings and large events, so for those times, bring your dancing shoes.
When I visited Bargetto's, John shared about the winery with a
fondness almost akin to talking of a much loved family member.
The wine heritage passed down over the generations is a living inheritance.
Next to that is an enthusiasm for the future of wine. “Wine has become part of the social and dietary fabric of the nation. We are a wine consuming nation. It's about health and moderation.”
Working hard, enjoying family and friends, and taking time for those around you...this is the legacy I see lived out at Bargetto's winery, and what I felt as a guest enjoying their wines.
Best to you and your family wine jaunt,
For your next outing, bring along some tasting room tips at Tasting 101.
Join me at California Wine