Q. What will you be pouring at The Garagiste Festival?
A. I will be pouring 2008 La Filice “Convivio”, (a Proprietary red wine blend) and 2007 La Filice Petite Sirah.
Q. Tell us something about La Filice Winery.
A. Our beginning’s were as La Forza Winery, making wine in a Garage located in Gilroy. La Filice Winery was born from a consuming passion for Syrah grown in California’s “Rhone Zone”; The Central Coast. Working with several grape growers, we began crafting 1-3 ton lots of syrah and petite sirah.
Q. How did you get started making wine?
A. My first experience in the world of wine began as Tasting Room Manager for the Family winery. I became absorbed with the world of wine, literally, taking a General Winery Worker position with The Monterey Vineyard in 1977. Following several years of paying my dues pulling hoses, and pushing pumps, I was promoted to Winemaker in 1985. I craft La Filice wines because “it’s what I do”. I am gainfully employed as Winemaker, Central Coast, for the Purple Wine Company.
Q. What do you hate about making wine?
A. As much as I love making, and enjoying the wine I craft, the “selling” part is most-challenging.
Q. Besides your own, what is your favorite wine region in the world?
A. A difficult question; I’d have to give a tie to the Northern Rhone, and Spain’s Priorat.
Q. Old World or New World?
A. Many fine wines are unrealized due to being over-made, or by following recipes. I really try to acquire the best fruit available, and stay out of the way, as much as possible.
Q. Any insider news you’d like to share?
A. Looking forward to bottling my 2009’s. The Watch Hill Syrah and Shell Creek Petite Sirah may be my best yet.
Q. Any advice to offer aspiring winemakers?
A. Get enthused, stay enthused. Bring lots of cash; sometimes small is just small. Good wine is not hard to make, but, very hard to sell.
For more information about La Filice Winery, click here.