The Palmina Blog

Steve Clifton
December 10, 2019 | Steve Clifton

Celebrating our 25th Harvest

I can still feel the excitement that overcame me the day I picked up the grapes that would ultimately be first Palmina wine. It was 1995 and I was able to purchase a small amount of Sangiovese from the Santa Barbara grape pioneer Joe Carrari! I drove my old Ford pickup to Los Alamos to meet Joe at his staging “yard” and took possession of 1 full ton of sangiovese grapes. Joe handed me a shovel and I transferred the fruit to two 500 liter barrels that I had converted into fermenters. When I got them home, I shoveled them one more time into the vessels I had prepared in my basement. I was underwhelmed with the color of the juice and thankfully, was able to purchase some merlot from Rancho Sisquoc Vineyard to bolster the concentration. Now, having just completed the 25th harvest for Palmina, I opened a bottle of that very first wine with some dear friends. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised and full of immense gratitude with how well that first vintage showed.

So many things have happened over these past 25 years. One of my greatest sources of pride was growing Palmina and Brewer-Clifton side by side for 20 years. Winemaking has allowed such an incredibly full life of adventure and experiences. Through this profession, I have been able to travel around the world selling wine in Japan, Canada, throughout Europe and of course in many States. I’ve had the opportunity to work on wine projects in Italy, Argentina, Washington State and throughout California. I feel so blessed to have found something that I love so much and to be able to call it “work”. The “wine community” has been truly amazing! I have made such
wonderful friends and have worked with so many inspiring colleagues. It’s strange how small the world becomes when you share a passion with people around the globe. Through the years we have welcomed interns from Italy, Argentina, New Zealand, Japan, Mexico and Washington. I hold each of those unique experiences and friendships so close and so dear.

Another incredible part of the journey has been to have the privilege to work with such an enlightening cast of staff over the years. So many fantastic individuals have given so much of themselves to this endeavor. Palmina has always felt like a true family atmosphere. I can’t begin to express the immense gratitude I feel toward all these amazing people who have given so much of themselves to Palmina. From those in the cellar, vineyards, tasting room, office and on the road for sales, each person has left a lasting mark on this dream come true.

But, none of it would be possible without all of you! I am so deeply grateful to all of you that have remained so loyal as part of the Palmina family. We’ve made so many wonderful friends over the years, had so many parties, and enjoyed lots of food and wine together! And, we are excited to continue those traditions! This next year we are intent on expanding our tasting opportunities and having some fun and exciting new events to share with all of you!

We hope you enjoy this season’s recipes and these newly released wines. We wish you a very Happy Holiday Season and would love to help with any holiday wine needs you might have. Please check out our great gift package ideas and take advantage of our holiday shipping specials. We look forward to seeing you over the Holiday Season and in the coming New Year. We send all of our best wishes to you and your families and want to express our sincere gratitude for being part of ours.

Tanti Auguri!

Steve Clifton

Time Posted: Dec 10, 2019 at 1:40 PM Permalink to Celebrating our 25th Harvest Permalink