The vineyard then and now.
In June, 2017, we purchased Barbed Oak Vineyard, realizing our dream to literally and figuratively return to our roots as we created a place to reflect on the bounty life provided us—and to create a place for our family and friends to spend time together.
The vineyard, which was planted in the late 1990s, was originally farmed to produce volumes of grapes that large wineries used to blend with their own. In the mid-2000s, the previous owners changed direction. They chose to employ the highest standard farming practices to achieve top-quality yields.
First, they grafted Pinot Noir clones onto existing root stock, adding power and structure to wines that the fruit produced. But improving the root stock wasn’t enough.
They began irrigating the vines sparingly, making them work harder, which produced even better fruit. They carefully managed the canopy—pulling leaves as needed to expose the fruit properly to the sun. They also dropped fruit—culling bunches of grapes, which reduced the yield, and further strengthened the quality of the grapes left on the vine.
It was—and is—labor intensive. But it resulted in phenomenal, luscious juice.
Which led to the thought: with juice that good, let’s keep some to make wines for family and friends! And that gave way to award-winning Barbed Oak Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
We retained the Barbed Oak Vineyard brand, and still offer the wines for purchase to wine club members and retail accounts. We also rechristened the vineyards with the name Henry David Vineyards, leaving open the possibility of acquiring other vineyards and expanding our offerings.
But one thing hasn’t changed… We continue employing premium farming practices to produce premium wines.