There is something inherently good about seeing someone get a chance to do what they love, and a chance to do it better, bigger, and with more finesse. I feel that way about M2 Wines.
Somehow, I stumbled onto M2 wines a few years back during a visit to Lodi. At the time, the tasting room and production facility were in an industrial building on the outskirts of town. The wine press was in the parking lot and the juice was in the making. I had the chance to meet Layne Montgomery, M2's winemaker. He mentioned their Old Vine Zin came from Lodi Zinfandel vines that were planted in 1916. It was 100% Zin—and that's not necessarily easy to carry off. Well, it was a delicious bottle of wine!
Fast forward, and I finally had the opportunity to visit again. M2 built a swank new winery (in 2014) which is now in Acampo, just a few minutes north of Lodi. This time I ended up meeting Ted Woodruff, general manager and co-owner. I stood in the breezeway and he asked me what I thought about the place. I told him I wanted to live there.
The buildings are set in the middle of a vineyard with grassy areas. The walls are oxidized steel next to warm woods and huge ribbed sheets of recycled plastic. The high ceilings and various seating areas indoors and out continue the peaceful feel, as well as the visual treat. There is even a piece of Alaskan pipe-line that's been turned into an outdoor fire pit. Ted showed us around the winery and then got us up-to-date with M2 wines.
So what about the wines?
In the middle of M2's expansion—in size, influence, production, and volume—they have continued to make their noteworthy wines with finesse.
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