Starting with 2 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon in the spring of 1986, Newsom Vineyards now grows a total of 148 acres, 19 varietiels and supplies fruit to 12 wineries in the state.
The farm is located on the Texas High Plains AVA ( American Viticulture Area) near the New Mexico state line. The elevation is 3,700 feet, which is higher than most viticulture areas in California. The land has shallow, low-vigor soil, which forces the vines to struggle a little bit and produce better fruit.
Given our semi-arid climate, there are almost no disease issues like cotton growers have. Although we do have weather challenges. In Texas its either too wet, too dry, too hot, or too cold. Hail storms during the harvest season can be disastrous.
The typical day working on the vineyards varies based on the season. In the spring, its vine management season. We have 25 seasonal field workers, and my son, Nolan, is my right-hand man all year. We prune and train the vines and kill the rye cover crop we planted during the winter so that theres no competition for moisture.
We harvest during the late summer. Harvest is a crazy time. Because of our altitude, it is very hot during the day, but it can cool off to well in the 60F by the early morning hours, which is when we pick the grapes. We start around midnight, and well often work through sunrise. In one night, we are able to fill one or two refrigerated semitrailer trucks with grapes. We bring them to our large barn, and Janice organizes the different bins on the trucks according to which winery gets certain grapes and which delivery will be first. From there, things happen pretty quickly. You usually have six to eight hours after harvesting to make the deliveries before the heat starts changing the grape chemistry.
We currently contract grow many wineries, some of these since we started. Our grapes have almost always wound up in every winery reserve program with vineyard designation. We have won several international medals (Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego & Switzerland), and gold and silver medals in most regional events that we have been entered into by our wineries. Visit the wineries using our grapes, and see whats been In the News about our vineyards.
Visit these wineries to enjoy wines created with Newsom grapes by some very talented winemakers… Texas Hills Vineyard * Inwood Estates Vineyard * LLano Estacado * Bending Branch Winery * Slate Mill Wine Collective * Calais Winery * Kerrville Hills Winery * Pedernales Cellers * Saint Tryphon Farm & Vineyards * Driftwood Estate * Flat Creek Estate * Siboney Cellars * Hawk’s Shadow Winery * Adega Vinho Winery * Ab Astris * Rancho Loma Vineyards * Valley Mills Vineyards * Bar Z Winery * Kuhlman Cellers * Longhorn Cellers.