Mike Benziger is often seen in the role of Biodynamic evangelist. While that's wonderful - and needed - it's also a great pleasure to hear his own story, told in intimate detail, in this new video series, Sonoma Legends, sponsored by the Sonoma Valley Vintners & Growers Alliance.
This is not yet another tedious winery video talking about family, tradition and terroir, but amazing life stories from people who've spent a lifetime in Sonoma in the wine industry and who collaboratively created the Sonoma wine culture that exists today.
The next video in the series (coming in a few months) features organic vineyard expert Phil Coturri in conversation with Sonoma vintner Richard Arrowood, renowned for his Moon Mountain District Cabernets (and his earlier Sonoma Valley Cabs) - which come from vineyards Coturri has farmed organically for several decades, both at Arrowood and at Amapola Creek. Coturri, a pot smoking leftie, and Arrowood, whose politics are the opposite of Coturri's, agree on one main thing - that organic farming yields more flavorful and nuanced wine grapes and wines.
Interestingly organic and Biodynamic growers play a prominent role in this new video series - far more than their relevant weight in the region.
In terms of numbers, three out of the initial four interviewees have relied on organic farming practices to create many of Sonoma's finest wines. For a county where so few acres are certified organic - 2.4% (or 1,400 acres out of 58,000) - that's nice to see.
Mike's story has so many interesting twists and turns - enjoy the show! And thanks to the SVVGA for creating and sharing these histories.