We have a rich life thanks to the nature that surrounds us. And with that richness comes the responsibility to share it with others both today and in the future. This means we must factor in land conservation, restorative agriculture, and climate change mitigation in literally everything we do. Our goal and our commitment is precisely this: Grow the best fruit and make the best wine, while also remembering that our greater legacy will come from our work to conserve our land, restore our soils, and limit our carbon footprint.
In 2010, Hal Hinkle bought two adjoining ranches in Geyserville, the heart of Sonoma’s Alexander Valley. By 2014 he had restored its creeks, replanted the vineyards, repaired the existing roads and started his first vintage. Working with Jesse Katz (now of Aperture) from 2014 to 2018 and with Kate Nowell-Smith, starting in 2019, he has set about to make the highest quality Bordeaux varietal wines, that are most fitting to the Alexander Valley, in the most earth friendly way. High-end viticulture is inherently an intense farming activity that can be very hard on the land. Through careful, yet unrelenting practices, Hal has pushed the envelope on sustainability from organic, to fish and bee friendly all the way to climate friendly. Today, Sei Querce is working to produce the first certified carbon neutral wines in the United States.
Jesse Katz, our initial consulting winemaker, was buying the fruit for his award-winning Malbec from an adjoining property. He wanted to buy fruit from us but since we were preparing to redevelop most of the vineyards, we had none for sale. Based on his travels and experience, Jesse thought our ranch was one of the best sites to produce premium Bordeaux varietals in Sonoma County. We decided to engage Jesse’s passion and insight by hiring him to help guide our replant and to make our first vintages (2014-2018). Based on extensive soil and solar aspect analysis in each block, Jesse helped pick each rootstock and each varietal and clone. Based on his unique talents, Jesse’s recognition has continued to grow globally as he now leads his own winery, Aperture Cellars. And he continues to buy our fruit.
Kate Nowell-Smith – Winemaker
While working at one of our fruit buying wineries, Kate got to know our site, our vineyard blocks, and our farming practices. After two harvests working with our fruit, she approached us and shared her vision of developing a program of small lot, minimal intervention, and highly sustainable wines. Our plans to push toward a carbon neutral vineyard footprint were compelling to her. She was sold on us, and we were sold on her. We totally love her first vintage (2019) and can’t wait to release the wines. Delightfully, Kate’s first vintage also included creating a spectacular Vermouth from our 2018 Sauvignon Blanc, showing her quick talent and insight into blending natural tastes and flavors.
Wines from Sei Querce, Geyserville, CA, USA
2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Ranch House
Blend: Cabernet Sauvignon
This is a velvety, rich wine, warm and inviting. You will find dark ripe raspberry and boysenberry here, along with Marcona almond and hints of toast coming from the French oak. There is a touch of sage and orange peel on the mid-palate that keeps this wine floral and lively. The finish goes on for a mile and is smooth to the end.
*Winemaker Notes: There is incredible structure to this vintage, and the wine is wonderfully concentrated, due to the low yielding vines, very small berries, and loose clusters. – Jesse Katz
2015 Six Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon
Blend: Cabernet Sauvignon
2020 Faye Creek Sauvignon Blanc
Blend: Sauvignon Blanc
Organic & Unfiltered Vermouth
This gently fortified wine is fun and serious, complex, and delicious. It is modestly sweet and carries a delightful sense of the freshness of Meyer lemon and pink grapefruit, on top of the fuller body that comes from the fortification. Our limited production vermouth plays at the very high-end of richly flavored vermouths that can be served neat, on the rocks, or in combination with fruit-based cocktails or a premium organic vodka martini. We all love this vermouth, and it could be years before we can create another winning treat such as this!
Winemaker notes: 2018 was the first harvest for our white varieties, and the crop was so small that we decided to co-ferment all our white grapes together, with a view towards making a vermouth. We fermented and aged the base wine in French oak barrels for 18 months, while conducting numerous trial infusions using only organic fruits, herbs, roots, spices, and flowers. Our final recipe is not only delicious but is truly greater than the sum of its parts. – Kate Nowell-Smith
Sei Querce, Geyserville, CA, USA Tech Sheets:
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