Winemaking
 

ROAR Winemaking

During harvest, the grapes travel a short distance from the vineyards to our winery in Monterey County. We recently moved into a new facility, built for our size and workflow. Here, winery manager Nick Franscioni and winemaker Scott Shapley use craft to guide the grape clusters to the finished wine in the bottle. It’s easier said than done to create a consistent product that authentically showcases each vineyard from one vintage to the next.

Working Hand in Hand

Working Hand in Hand

Year-round collaboration keeps everyone in step. Scott shares that “The vineyard and winery work hand in hand throughout the year - the benefits of a family-run team with a hands-on approach.” Gary and Adam regularly check in at the winery, and Scott and Nick spend time among the vines throughout the season. This constant communication ensures we are nimble and working in tandem.

When time comes to blend the final wine, it’s all hands on deck. Scott and Nick begin by assessing each barrel's quality and uniqueness, followed by a rigorous process of crafting preliminary blends. Then Gary, Rosella & Adam join in at the big table to compare, discuss, and refine the blends. Votes are cast, but no matter the majority opinion, every blend must receive Rosella’s approval. A true ROAR wine!

Minimal Intervention

Minimal Intervention

The vineyards speak for themselves through our wines. “We try to avoid doing anything that will override what we’ve done in the vineyards to grow fantastic fruit. Oak is meant to be complimentary, and cellar operations are designed to enhance vineyard expression and maintain complexity,” Scott says. ROAR’s technique guides the fruit to its best expression with minimal intervention.

We diligently sanitize and scrub every surface, hand-sort each cluster that slides across the table, and consistently assess the health of each fermentation. Punch downs are our main function of cap management, as well as tasting and assessing the extraction of flavors and aromas through fermentation process. The rest is left for the yeast to run its course.

Small-lot Winemaking

Small-lot Winemaking

Small-lot fermentations allow for innovation while maintaining consistency. Our fermentation vessels are wide, yielding a greater skin-to-juice ratio in the red wines. This extracts flavor, texture, and color that are signature to our style. White wines are barrel-fermented, finding an earlier experience with oak. This helps soften the more pronounced flavor and tannin from the oak, allowing a seamless integration during aging.

Part of the fun of winemaking is trying new things that promote creativity in our wines while preserving vineyard expression. As fruit arrives during harvest, Scott, Nick, and the team utilize 1-ton bins to experiment with smaller fermentations. Two examples this past year include fermenting and aging Pinot Noir in concrete, as well as co-fermenting multiple clones to drive complexity earlier in the process.