Between the Vines is a biweekly column on wine and wine making in the Livermore Valley region. This column was contributed by John Concannon, the fourth-generation vintner at Concannon Vineyard.
Winery name: Concannon Vineyard
Owners: We are owned by The Wine Group, but my father, Jim Concannon, and I are still at the helm of the winery. Founded in 1883, Concannon Vineyard is the oldest winery operating under the same family label with consecutive harvests and family involvement in the United States.
About us: Family is at the heart of Concannon Vineyard wines. Inspired by four generations of family leadership, Concannon Vineyard's contributions to winemaking have positioned it as a landmark winery with an enduring commitment to creating outstanding, award-winning wine. For us, putting family first also means preserving the land for future generations. This is why Concannon Vineyard was the first of 13 wineries to become Certified Organic in California, and this is why we continue to farm with sustainable, organic and biodynamic practices in mind.
We have a tasting room on the property as well as the Underdog Wine Bar, which features light hors d'oeuvres paired with more than 50 wines from all over the world. We are a popular wedding venue, and we have lush, shaded picnic facilities with tables and chairs. Please visit us to relax and enjoy our award-winning wines.
Our wines: We produce semillon, sauvignon blanc, viognier, chardonnay, pinot noir, tempranillo, Grenache, zinfandel, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, syrah, petite sirah, petite sirah port and late-harvest semillon/sauvignon blanc. We also produce estate-grown olive oil.
Petite sirah is our signature varietal. When we imported this powerful little grape back in 1906, our sole intent was to use it as a blending grape, much like the rest of the world did at that time. It wasn't until a 1961 vintage that we tried producing it as a 100 percent varietal, and it sold out in the blink of an eye. We are proud to say that this was the first 100 percent petite sirah ever produced, putting Concannon Vineyard on the map. Our petite sirah prices range from $30 to $60 per bottle.
Our least expensive bottle is any one of our Select Vineyards wines, which are $10. Our most expensive bottle is our Heritage Petite Sirah or Heritage Cabernet Sauvignon, both of which are $60.
Concannon's winemaker, Julian Halasz, blends the old-world sensibility and wisdom of his Hungarian homeland with new-world technology. In many ways, he's the best-kept secret of the Livermore Valley.
Hours & tasting fee: We are open daily from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and wine tasting is $10 per flight per person.
Location: We are at 4590 Tesla Road in Livermore. Our phone number is 924-456-2505, and our website is www.ConcannonVineyard.com.
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