Get the Dirt about Imagine Wines with Ross Jay Rankin

15 Jun

ImaginePeople1. What was your first vintage year? 2004

2. How many cases do you make per vintage? Approximately 1000

3. Do you have a Tasting Room? Yes. It is located at 3563 Numancia Street Santa Ynez, CA 93460. We are open from 11am-5pm daily.

4. How did you get your start in the winemaking business? Went to Allan Hancock College, then worked with several winemakers for 2 years. I started Imagine in 2004.

5. What wine made you want to become a winemaker/start your own winery? Daniel Gehrs 1997 Briddlewood Syrah

6. What varietals do you work with? Which varietal/wine is your favorite to make? Why? We currently make French Colombard, Viognier, Barbara, Grenache, Zinfandel, Cabernet, and Syrah. We are known for our Paradise Mountain Syrah. We are currently selling our ’07 which was aged in Oak for 6 years. Syrah is what we are known for.

7. What vineyards do you source from? Why? If estate, why did you choose the spot you’re in? Paradise Road (we call it Paradise Mountain), Sunny-slope Vineyard Paso Robles, Louie Lucas, Demetria and others.

imaginebottles8. What type of oak treatment do you use? We use 70% French, 25% Hungarian, and 5% American for most Reds. Our wines are “Aged by Design®”. We age our wines 3-6 years in oak before release.

9. What do you love about your winemaking region? What makes it different special? Flavor! Due mostly to the heat during harvest. Also the fact that we age our wines in the barrel and bottle before we sell them. We are almost the only ones left doing so.

10. What’s the story behind your name/label? Imagine Wine was named for the life experience my wife and family have had in starting and owning a number of companies both domestically and international in the Medical field and then choosing to start a winery; all of which took imagination.

11. What’s the one thing you wish someone had told you about the wine business before you started your own winery? Open a tasting room immediately and then build the Brand.

12. What do you love about small-lot winemaking? Anything you DON’T love about it? It allows for the kind of winemaking control that preserves the flavor and allows complexity. The down side is that the wine industry has become “fast and furious” and totally price driven.

13. Do you still have a day job? If so, do you mind sharing what it is? We own a medical company specializing in storage system in hospitals.

For more information about Imagine Wines, please visit their website or follow them on FACEBOOK and TWITTER.

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