Hafner Vineyard

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Our French Intern

Guillaume - our French internA new set of hands has been working with Ricardo and me in the cellar for the past couple of months. He’s fun and he’s French…he’s Guillaume, the intern! He arrived in California on June 10th and lives with my wife, Sarah, and me on the property here in Alexander Valley. Guillaume has been helping Ricardo and me in the cellar as we get ready for harvest. He and Ricardo make a great team. I often walk into the caves and hear them working away, but also laughing hysterically. Guillaume said he’s teaching Ricardo a few choice French phrases and Ricardo’s helping him perfect the art of Mexican Spanish. Read more about Guillaume's adventures!

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Malolactic Chardonnay "Starter"

Harvest 2016 at Hafner VineyardIt's here! Today marked the first (though unofficial) day of the 2016 Harvest. Each year, the vineyard crew handpicks a small amount of Chardonnay, so that we can create a malolactic “starter”. This is a similar idea to how bakers make sourdough bread. We grow a small batch of malolactic bacteria which will in turn be used to inoculate larger lots. Eventually we will inoculate about 40% of our main Chardonnay and 100% of the Reserve Chardonnay. 

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Next Gen BlogEach July, a little reminder pops up on my calendar at work: “Next Gen Ahead! Start brainstorming!” This notification sets off excitement across the entire Hafner Vineyard team. When I joined the team four years ago, Uncle Scott charged me with cultivating my generation and bringing in new patrons. One way we do this is by hosting a gathering here in Alexander Valley each October that we call our Next Generation Harvest Party. What I am always excited about is seeing how many of the “Next Gen-ers” are children or grandchildren of longtime patrons. They’ve grown up with Hafner wine on their family tables, just as I have. It reminds me that we are in it together

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Summer Colors in the Vineyard

Sarah and Annie the yellow labEach season in our Alexander Valley vineyard has its own distinct characteristics and color. While most think of Spring as bright and exciting with all of the vineyard’s new growth, it is early Summer that I enjoy most. The vines have bloomed (small berries begin to appear under the shade of its leaves) and are beginning to grow exponentially. When you picture a vineyard, you see it as a blanket of green, but when you walk through a vineyard, there are a vast number of hues, perhaps as many as 50.

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Biking in Healdsburg

Parke and his biking friendsEach weekend morning, I join my friends for a bike ride around Sonoma County. It’s a fun way to get some exercise and enjoy the beautiful country where we live. To take advantage of the early morning fog and empty roads, we hop on our bikes in Healdsburg around 8:30 a.m. We have several routes to choose from, but two of our favorites takes us through the wine regions of our area: Alexander Valley, Dry Creek Valley and Russian River Valley.

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