There is a sense of place here. At Boeger Winery the grounds feel calming and restorative and offer a visual, historical, and tasting delight. Once at the entrance to the driveway, you'll see vistas of rolling hills and vineyards. As you round the corner you'll see the modern tasting room that respectfully fits into the landscape, instead of competing with it.
The outlying historical buildings, pond, and rolling, grassy picnic areas draw you in. Then, walk into the tasting room and discover how welcoming the Boeger staff are. This is not a time to rush.
While I was at the winery, the owner, Greg Boeger offered to show me around. Greg is a true pioneer in the Placerville area, and in El Dorado County in the California Foothills. In 1984 he was instrumental in the birth of the El Dorado Wine Appellation (AVA.) In 1972, he and wife Sue purchased the land. They planted grapes after the pear blight and started the first post-prohibition commercial winery in El Dorado County. This year he is the recipient of the 2018 Wine Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to the wine industry and for placing California wines on the map—domestically and internationally.
All these achievements are an extension of who Greg is. There is not a trace of pretension. Just a humble guy who likes to farm and who's made a landing pad for family and community to flourish.
The community-forward perspective can be seen in the Blacksmith Shop on the property. A couple local blacksmiths were needing a place for their business, and the Boeger's offered a site on their property and the reclaimed wood from an old building . The guys built the structure and now have a work space that is open for the public to visit.
Greg made the Boeger wines for 30 years, and now son Justin is winemaker for Boeger Winery. Continuing the craft, Justin is next in the family line of generations of winemakers. I had the chance to meet Justin previously at an event, and during my visit to the winery he was in the throws of bottling with his team. Sue, Greg's wife, handled the business and finance part of their winery for years and now still oversees this area of the winery. The beautiful property is a testimony to her savvy skills in running a business. Additionally, Sue's sculptures grace the office areas.
Daughter, Lexi, is an artist and oversees the graphics and branding of the winery. You'll see her creativity on the wine bottle designs. The Boeger logo, an arrow, means Skilled Archer in German. In her spare time, she works in her artist's studio on the property, and is the President of the El Dorado Winery Association!
The family winemaking and farming story stretches even further back to the Nichelini family winery; established in 1890 in Napa, which is still family owned. Greg spent time in Napa, working in his family's vineyard. He also worked his summers at his Uncle's apricot and prune ranch in San Jose. For more on the Boeger's rich history, visit their website for a three part Father/Daughter conversation...link.
Boeger Wines, Varietals & Blends...
The wines are made primarily from Estate grown fruit, including grapes from their 100 year old
pre-prohibition vineyard, which does indeed include old Zinfandel vines.
Visit for a tasting or become a wine club member and enjoy gorgeous varietals such as:
Primitivo, Tempranillo, Zinfandel, Petitie Sirah,
White Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Merlot, Barbera of course, and more.
and acids will stand up to grilled squash and grilled tri-tip or pork.
Boeger Winery offers their own blends with a clever theme...
You may look at all those varietals and swoon with joy; or feel overwhelmed by which to try.
No worries. The Boeger staff are great at listening to your food and wine flavor
interests and can offer you tastings geared to your preferences.
So if you're heading up to Sacramento or Tahoe, a visit to Boeger Winery will add to your experience.
But give yourself time to savor the place and the wines.
Best to you while exploring new wine regions in California...
and your jaunt to Boeger Winery.
For more tasting in the California Foothills, see my visit to Terra d'Oro Winery.
Join me at California Wine