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Natural Beekeeping

Natural BeekeepingWhat the heck is “natural beekeeping”?! After a class at Shed in Healdsburg with Ariella Daly, Martin and I were sold on natural and sustainable beekeeping. It takes a holistic and hands off approach. We use a top-bar hive made from Bee Built in Oregon because they are deeply focused on reducing environmental impacts. A main difference between conventional and natural (or sustainable/organic) beekeeping is the comb. Natural beekeeping allows the bees to build their own comb as they would in nature, instead of living in pre-built plastic comb. It has been very fun learning about bees and their community. They are teaching us patience and reminding us that we share this land with many other species. 


Barrel Fermented Chardonnay

Caves in Alexander ValleyThe technique of barrel fermenting Chardonnay has been used for centuries in France but was first introduced to me in 1979 when I worked at Chappellet winery in Napa Valley. My time working at Domaine des Comtes Lafon, in Meursault, France two years later continued to expand my understanding and appreciation of barrel fermentation. As a result, we began fermenting Chardonnay in barrels with our first vintage, 1982. Barrel fermentation of Chardonnay results in a very different flavor profile of the wine compared to tank fermentation. Barrel fermentation allows the flavors contributed by the oak to be gently integrated into the wine resulting in a softer, creamier wine than if you tank fermented the wine and then barrel aged it.


Meet the Team - Michele

Michele Osborne"Meet the Team" is our blog series that introduces each of the Hafner Vineyard team members. We answer a series of questions about ourselves and our time at Hafner Vineyard. Michele Osborne is third generation Hafner Vineyard team member. Her grandmother helped with mailings in the '80s and her mom worked here for 10 years. Michele is also a fifth generation Alexander Valley resident! A dedicated mother of two, she and her husband spend their weekends helping their daughters race in the "outlaw go kart" races. As a teenager, Michele worked the bottling line and shares some fun memories of working on the line with Parke. 


6 Months after the Fires

Tubbs Fire RecoveryIt’s been six months since the fires ripped through Sonoma, Napa, Lake and Mendocino Counties. Every day, we are reminded of its impact on our community and landscape – traffic jams through Santa Rosa where the fire crossed six lanes of highway, dump trucks filled to the brim with debris from burned homes, charred trees spot the hillsides, and each day new stories are shared. Everyone has a story of their experience with the fires. Everyone was impacted in one way or another – some much more than others. On our blog, we wanted to share what it has been like during the past six months. We are so grateful for the outpouring of support both during the fires and continuing to present. Thank you.


A Day in Geyserville

GeyservillePatrons and friends often ask us, "What should I do in Wine Country that's off the beaten track?" We've created a day's itinerary of fun things to do in Geyserville in Sonoma County. We share places to eat, wine taste, shop and hike. We always love helping to make trips more memorable, so hopefully you will enjoy a few of these places. Watch for future itineraries in other Sonoma County towns.