Here’s a quick geology lesson—and we promise it’ll lead to a good drink. Certain valleys contain something called a wind gap, which is a gap where a river or other waterway once flowed, but is now dry. And here’s where the wine comes in—in Northern California, some winemakers have discovered that this natural erosion can positively influence grapes. According to Forbes, "the wind makes the grapes develop thicker skins and smaller clusters; the phenolic compounds are more present in the skins, so when you change the ratio of skin to juice, you have a more intense flavor." Ready to uncork a bottle? Keep reading.
The History of Wind Gap
Pax and Pam Mahle first arrived in California’s wine country in 1997 and launched Pax Mahle Wines in 2000. Initially, they focused on the Syrah grape, which thrives in the cooler climates of Sonoma and Mendocino counties. Since the early days, the couple have created several brands (including Wind Gap, which was established in 2006) and added other varietals to their lineup, like Chenin Blanc, Gamay, and Carignan.
Wind Gap Company Mission
Since its founding in 2006, Wind Gap has made well-loved Syrah, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay wines without the use of chemicals. The grapes are grown on cooler-climate vineyards that are influenced by wind gaps, and on average, the winery produces 12,000 cases a year. The winery aims to use as little intervention as possible, and ferments the grapes only with natural yeasts.
Benefits of Wind Gap
Wind Gap approaches winemaking holistically, starting with grapes that are grown without chemicals. Instead of crushing the grapes, winemakers use a process called carbonic maceration, which allows the grapes to ferment under their own weight, plus low-sulfite practices. The unique “Soif” blend is harvested from original 1940s vines, and blends Zinfandel, Carignan, Mourvedre, and other varietals. The wine pairs beautifully with barbecue dishes or picnic fare, and tastes its best when slightly chilled.
- Sustainably Farmed
- Made in USA
- No Added Sugar or Sweeteners
Top Wind Gap Products
Soif is the French word for “thirst,” so you can bet after one sip you’ll be eager to reach for another.
Soif Red Field Blend 2016 - Half Case of Wine
Harvested from a vineyard planted in the 1940s, this lively blend combines organic Zinfandel, Petite Syrah, and Dolcetto grapes.
Soif Red Field Blend 2016 - Full Case of Wine
This red blend is ready for anything! Each bottle combines three organic grapes (Zinfandel, Petite Syrah, and Dolcetto) all harvested from vines planted in the 1940s.
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