The Tractor Chronicles - Tales of Farming the Narrowest Vineyard Rows in Sonoma

by Peter Mathis on December 05, 2013

The 2013 Harvest may be over, but there's still a lot of work to do in Mathis Vineyard to ensure I always get the best Grenache from my vines. Here are videos of my preparation for the dormant winter period in Sonoma Valley. In early November it began with discing the rows. See for yourself in this preview of "The Tractor Chronicles."



Meet my tractor! Learn why my vineyard rows are so narrow and why I make my own farm equipment: 


Here's the official Episode #1 of "The Tractor Chronicles." It was a gorgeous day in Sonoma. Meet my disc harrow that cuts through the dirt between my vineyard rows of Grenache.


In Episode #2 of "The Tractor Chronicles" there's a bit more discing, but it's really about preparing for planting my organic cover crop. I explain in the video: 


Now you know the plan: Loosen the soil with my disc harrow in preparation for planting organic cover crop. In Episode #3 of "The Tractor Chronicles" (below) learn about the composition of the cover crop and how it's planted. (Hint: Sometimes I have to do things the old-fashioned way--on my feet!)


As you now know, my soil preparation and planting method is a bit imperfect. In these outtakes of "The Tractor Chronicles," I wanted to show you how some seeds get missed and don't quite get buried, but Lily, Mathis Vineyard Dog, had other ideas while I was filming. 

Stay tuned for Episode #4 of "The Tractor Chronicles." To see all of my videos, be sure to visit and subscribe to my YouTube channel.

Introducing the 2013 Mathis Red Blend

by Peter Mathis on October 17, 2013

Here's a new video introducing a new blend I'm working on. It's mostly half Petite Sirah and half Grenache (of course). But it does include some Alicante Bouschet and Carignane, plus about 20 vines of the little-known Graciano and Marzemino. Take a look: 

Fermenting the 2013 Mathis Grenache

by Peter Mathis on October 03, 2013

Harvest has been busy the past couple of weeks, having brought in three separate picks of Mathis Vineyard. In the video below, I'll show you how the 2013 vintage of Mathis Grenache is doing, fermenting in a tank.

Pardon the ambient noise in the video; the winery has a lot going on with continuing deliveries of freshly-harvested grapes to bins getting hosed out as they are readied for the next batch of arrivals.

Can't wait for you to get to try the 2013 Mathis Grenache, but it will have to wait a couple of years. I'll take another video of racking the wine. (When the fermentation is complete it comes out of the steel tank and goes into neutral oak barrels for a couple of years to age.) Let me know if you liked the video or have a question below.

Block 100 of Mathis Vineyard: Home of Premium Grenache Grapes

by Peter Mathis on September 18, 2013

In the last post's video I showed you where the rosé comes from in Mathis Vineyard. This time I'll show you where the red Grenache wine comes from in the vineyard -- block 100. The vines and grapes are different in this area. Take a look:

I actually began harvest at Mathis Vineyard over the past weekend. But I only pick what's ripest. So there are several more picking sessions to go.

Soon-to-be 2013 Mathis Grenache

by Peter Mathis on September 09, 2013

There's little time to write with harvest already in swing in parts of Sonoma for vintage 2013. Hence, you're more likely to see video content here than a lot of words!

Cutting to the chase: Here's a less-than-2-minutes video from the vineyard on getting ready for the 2013 harvest. It was taken Saturday with temperatures nearing 100 degrees (but not quite). And pardon the no-shirt look. I was hot! Mathis Wine is not a "no-shirt, no-shoes, no-service" operation! LOL

What do you think? Leave a comment below.