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In 1968, when our first grapevines went in the ground, our family didn’t know much about the crop. In fact, our family was well known for farming something much different: seed corn. Warren V. Bogle frequently won bushel-per-acre awards for growing high yields of corn for Dekalb.
Fifty years later, our knowledge of viticulture and the use of sustainable practices here in our estate fields, as well as around the state, have also been recognized as a leader in the industry. We are so proud of how far we’ve come from just a few acres of grapevines planted just behind the barn.
Bogle Vineyards has been chosen as the California Green Medal: Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership Award winner for 2018. The Leader Award honors the vineyard that best demonstrates the “3 E’s” of sustainability by excelling in Environmentally sound, socially Equitable, and Economically viable practices. The announcement was made on March 29 by a coalition of wine associations across California.
“We believe it is our responsibility to ensure our estate vineyards and our partner growers are implementing the latest sustainability techniques,” says Warren Bogle. “It is vital that we care for the land and resources to ensure future generations can continue to farm as we have.”
The family, along with longtime employees Chris Smith, Eric Aafedt, and Dana Stemmler, accepted the award at the California State Capitol last month in a ceremony led by Allison Jordan, executive director of the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance.
Ryan Bogle accepted the award on behalf of the family. “Sustainability is more than just a buzzword,” Bogle shared with the attendees. “It is at the core of what we do on a daily basis in our farming and winemaking operations.”
Most notably, the winery is proud of a bonus program established in 2010 which paid grower partners more per ton for sustainably grown grapes.
“While we have 1,700 estate acres certified in Clarksburg, Lodi, and the Sierra Foothills, in 2017 over 92% of all grapes that came into our winery during crush were certified sustainable. It is a measure we and our growers are truly proud of.”
To showcase our commitment to sustainability, our wines will soon start to bear a symbol recognizing them as “Certified Green.” Starting with the 2017 vintage, almost all our wines will carry this seal.
The photo above shows, from left to right: Ryan Bogle; Chris Smith, Director of Winegrowing; Jody Bogle; Eric Aafedt, Director of Winemaking; Dana Stemmler, Winemaker; receiving the California Green Medal at the State Capitol on March 29, 2018.
After 20 years, this was really tough. There have been so many moments: good, bad, sad, joyous.
The most memorable time at Bogle for me was the million-case mark. It was truly amazing how everyone worked together to achieve a common goal, and when we all heard we reached it, I think there was just this sudden peace, satisfaction, the high fives with a head nod, and the sense of accomplishment among all the employees, no matter what department we worked in. All the work, building, moving, organizing, events, preparing…everyone gave of themselves to the best of their abilities wherever needed, without question, and you just had a sense of being part of something big. My Grandma used to say “It’s good to bask in the sun but don’t get sunburnt!” Bask we all did…then we knew it was time to continue to reach more accomplishments.
Fifty years of grape growing! Wow, I have been here 20 years of that 50. I love the vineyards! Working alongside Warren and watching his intensity and the pride he takes in his vineyards, the soil, the water, the vine, the grape, and finally to wine has been a privilege and definitely a learning experience. Fifty years shows character, strength, honor, motivation, overcoming obstacles, a focus on being sustainable. The true spirit Bogle puts into their practices is really, just simply put, contagious.
You couldn’t ask for a better place to have Bogle but in the Delta. It is just a wonder of beauty to drive into work and see the tule fog just along the base of the vineyard with the vines just on top of it as to say “here we come.” By far, hands down, the Delta has the best sunsets. The orange, red, yellow hues over the vines, over the river, it is glorious and truly God’s country. With all those factors going for you, I expect Bogle to be here another 50, 100, 150 years!
My biggest achievement, on a personal level, and what I am most proud of is my family – being a wife of 32 years, a mother of two beautiful, respectful adults, and especially a nana has made my heart grow bigger. Pure joy in watching my family grow and of course spoiling the grandchildren. Maybe this is why I love working at Bogle so much…the sense of family, the patience you have to have with your children, it’s just like the patience it takes in the vineyard. The good, the bad, the happy, the sad: you handle it, you move on, and you enjoy every minute of it – well, and of course, a bottle of Bogle helps along the way too.
It all started with 10 acres of Petite Sirah. Why?
“That’s a really good question,” says Jody Bogle, whose grandfather Warren planted those first vines in 1968.
We know that Warren V. Bogle planted 10 acres of Petite Sirah and 10 acres of Chenin Blanc, but the reason behind those specific varietals has been lost to history.
What we do know is that Petite Sirah has come to be known as Bogle’s “heritage” varietal. Once planted all those years ago, the vine took off, establishing roots and a love for the rich, clay soil found in our part of the Sacramento Delta.
As the first red wine bottled by the family in 1978, it came to be synonymous with the winery. For many customers, Petite Sirah was the first Bogle wine they tried. Today, so many years later, Bogle is the largest producer of Petite Sirah in the world.
So there was no question that the 50th Anniversary release would be Petite Sirah.
Handpicked from our estate Quick Ranch on Merritt Island, just a few miles down Elk Slough from our homestead, the grapes for this wine were selected for their quality and concentration.
“This Petite had dark, tightly formed clusters whose flavor was really outstanding,” says Eric Aafedt, Director of Winemaking. “We wanted to showcase the beauty and intensity of the Petite Sirah grape and make something that would age for a long time. Maybe not fifty years, but long enough.”
After primary and secondary fermentations, the wine was placed in French and American oak barrels where it aged for over 24 months. Additional time aging in the bottle allowed the components of the wine to come together seamlessly.
A nose of lavender and violets leads to huge blackberry and marionberry flavors on the palate. Silky, rich, luscious, and luxurious, this wine finishes with touches of toasty spice and voluptuous caramel, essences of both barrel types left behind. A perfect food wine, pairings are pretty limitless, and the wine could cellar for 20 years.
Bottled in a limited edition silk screened bottle and finished with gold wax, this wine can currently only be found at our tasting room in Clarksburg.
Customers not in our local area can call the winery to inquire about shipping to their location…
Arguably the most influential wine competition out there, the California State Fair recently announced its winners…and your favorite Bogle wines were much loved! Excellent scores from Wine Enthusiast and Wines & Spirits have followed. Read below to see if your favorite Bogle wine has earned praise recently.
California State Fair Wine Competition
Cabernet Sauvignon BEST OF CLASS, DOUBLE GOLD, 99pts
Pinot Noir, GOLD, 95 pts
Chardonnay, GOLD, 95 pts
Phantom Chardonnay, SILVER, 93 pts
Old Vine Zinfandel, SILVER, 93 pts
Merlot, SILVER, 91 pts
Essential Red, SILVER, 88 pts
Wines & Spirits
“Top 100 Values” Petite Sirah, BEST BUY, 88 pts