Urban Wineries


Green acres is the place to be; Farm living is the life for me?  Well, it’s true that rural settings are usually where you’ll find vineyards and wineries.  But, maybe it doesn’t have to be that way.  If you live in the city or the suburbs — how about making wine right there in your own neighborhood? 

Join us as we sit in with Michael Brill (CrushPad), Tracey Brandt (A Donkey and Goat), Sasha Verhage (Eno), and Andrew Vingiello (AP Vin), four urban winemakers from the Bay Area, to discuss how they got started, and the advantages and disadvantages of making their wines in the big city.

– Crushpad: www.crushpadwine.com
– A Donkey and a Goat Winery: www.adonkeyandagoat.com
– Eno Wines: www.enowines.com
– AP Vin: www.apvin.com

Sponsor: Custom Crush Napa: www.napainvestors.com

Click Below to Play the Show:

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Show #111
(1:21:07 min 38 MB)

Above: (l to r) Michael Brill (CrushPad), Tracey Brandt (A Donkey and Goat), Sasha Verhage (Eno), and Andrew Vingiello (AP Vin)
Below: CrushPad facility


14 Responses to “Urban Wineries”

  1. 1 Jerry Sparrow Sep 25th, 2006 at 10:34 am


    First congrats on winning the “podcast of the year”.

    Also I realy like these extended formatted shows. They take a littl longer to go through but a well worth it. I love the roundtable – Clearly everone had a great time. -J

  2. 2 Max Jensen Sep 25th, 2006 at 11:20 am

    Hi All, way to go on the award,that’s huge !

    Also,thx for the mention on the Washington wines at the beginning of the show. As a small winery owner myself in my 2nd year I just happen to be a stone’s throw away from Quilceda Creek in Lake Stevens, Wa. I however don’t have any of their 100 pt wines. I do have have my own new release wines and I can totally identify with the urban wine folks as I have my production in a 2 car garage, all 300 cases. Keep up the great podcasts ~

    Cheers !! ~ Max
    Griffins Crossing Winery

  3. 3 Sasha Verhage Sep 25th, 2006 at 1:31 pm

    Haven’t had the a Quilceda Creek wine yet… looking forward to any opportunity.

    Max, glad to hear that you are making use of your garage- perfect for topping of barrels between commercials. As a home winemaker I did that in San Francisco (which because of the fog) had natural air conditioning. By the way, where do you park your cars?

    Eno Wines

  4. 4 James Sep 25th, 2006 at 3:18 pm

    Sasha (and Max)-

    This is my second harvest as a home winemaker and I was hoping you could answer a few questions for me. How long were you a home winemaker before you decided to go all-in on starting a winery? How did you grow your knowledge as a winemaker? How did you buy your fruit? Direct from growers? Broker?

    I wish I had the natural air conditioning you enjoy in San Francisco. I’m out in the foothills and my garage is an oven most days. As a result, my carboys spend a lof of their time in our coat closet!

    Great show! I really enjoyed it.


  5. 5 Steve Johnson Sep 25th, 2006 at 7:33 pm

    Strange love. A Donkey and a Goat…Wine made within yards of graffiti. I was laughing out loud at my desk while listening to this show!

    If anyone ever calls you guys wine snobs, email them a link to this show.

    If anyone questions the love of two fully grown mammals, email them a link to this show.

    I checked the ADAAG web site and found a retailer that carries their wine…like two miles from my house.

    I’m heading over there this week to buy some wine…

    I LOVED this show. Bet someone $20 Randall Graham drinks this wine.

  6. 6 Tracey Brandt Sep 25th, 2006 at 8:54 pm

    Hey Steve-

    So glad you enjoyed listening to the show. I know we enjoyed getting together – wish we did it more often. Drop me a line and let me know what you think of the wine.


    PS – I’ll take that bet and would be thrilled to pay up!

  7. 7 Andrew P. Vingiello Sep 26th, 2006 at 7:37 am

    Hey All!

    Thanks so much for listening to the roundtable! It was a real pleasure for me to create a sense of urban winemaking for the listening masses.

    I still crack up everytime I hear Tracey chattn’ about the reefer! 🙂

    James…if ok, thought I might provide you some answers:

    I (personally) was never a home winemaker (but I was a home wino!)…I had a bottle (actually several) of Tarius Pisoni pinot a few years back that just pushed me over the edge…like a light bulb I was hooked…contacted Brian Loring and the rest is history. Thanks Brian!!! 🙂

    Grew my knowledge in the cellar and mentoring with Brian, as well as learning from many other CA pinot producers. Lucky me!

    I bought my first fruit from Gary Franscioni…Brian introduced me to Gary…I expressed interest in fruit (acutally begged and pleaded) and Gary must have seen something in me and sold me fruit. I still pinch myself everyday!

    Hope those brief answers help a bit…


  8. 8 Max Jensen Sep 26th, 2006 at 12:36 pm

    Hi James ~

    In response to your request. I actually started commercially working on the bottling line for the first year before the asst.winemaker would trust me to top barrels,clean tanks or move wine around. I was very persistent so they finally let me help with the production side. I spent five years there gathering as much hands on knowledge as possible and then started moonlighting at another winery as a pseudo asst.cellarmaster, I quit the first winery after 9 mo’s of moonlighting and took on a fulltime day job to pay the bills and continued working at the 2nd winery after hours. I worked there for another 5 years and was getting tired of working 80 weeks, so I decided to go out on my own since I already had vineyard contacts and a pretty good head for the winemaking side of things. Also took a few Davis classes along the way, but nothing is better than getting hands on with someone you respect and enjoy hanging around with, also if there is a local winemakers club, that can be a good resource. Hope that helps, and follow your dreams ~!! Max

  9. 9 James Sep 27th, 2006 at 8:01 am

    Andrew & Max-

    Thanks for sharing your stories and advice. Sounds like finding a good mentor has been key for both you.

    Continued success to you both.


  10. 10 GrapeRadio Bunch Sep 27th, 2006 at 11:04 am

    Hey Steve, I knew you’d get a kick out of this show. I was LOL listening to it myself!


  11. 11 David Buttrick Sep 30th, 2006 at 9:21 pm

    Just a quick note to say that I loved this show, thanks for spending the time to this!
    I also really appreciated the show about Barrel making.

    The show is really great, and i’m addicted!



  12. 12 Eric Rayburn Oct 1st, 2006 at 5:01 am

    Congrats on the award, guys! Now we know you’ll keep doing the show!
    Great show, very enjoyable and informative. It’s good to have a topic a litle off the beaten path.
    Keep it up!

  13. 13 Lisa Liberati Dec 27th, 2006 at 11:31 pm

    I just listened to this podcast on the way home from xmas with my family and found it, well, inspirational. Since my garage is shared, I’m wondering if anyone knows of any facilities like CrushPad closer to Santa Monica than San Francisco…

  14. 14 GrapeRadio Bunch Dec 28th, 2006 at 8:56 pm

    Lisa, I will check on that for you.


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