The Abacela Plan
To realize their dream, Earl and Hilda Jones set in place a series of bold moves to ultimately produce an American varietal Tempranillo. This required that Earl, a physician-scientist-educator and Hilda a medical technologist, would give up their jobs and develop skills in an entirely new arena for which they were not formerly educated. The Abacela plan began with a tremendous amount of research into climate, soil, grape varieties, and the wine industry and required that the family move to wherever the dream could be born.
The steps, oversimplified for brevity, were;
- Understanding that the principal quality factor for production of fine Tempranillo in Spain was the requirement of a distinctive growing season climate. That climate was characterized by a cool spring, a dry-hot summer and a cool early autumn. Low growing season rainfall and mild winters further define the climate.
- Next, identify a very similar climate, e.g.holoclime in the USA.
- Select from within that holoclime a suitable vineyard site.
- Move to that location and establish the vineyards with full knowledge that no one was growing the varietal(s) anywhere remotely close.
- Acquire and develop the required skills in viticulture.
- Plant Tempranillo and all other winegrape varietals required to produce a Spanish style Tempranillo wine comparable to those of the Rioja and Ribera Del Duero.
- Conduct trials to define optimal cultivar planting characteristics and management practices.
- Explore the possibility of growing other winegrape varietals.
- Build Abacela winery to incorporate the concepts of gravity flow and minimal handling.
- Develop the required skills in enology with a focus on utilizing the techniques of cold soaking, manual punch downs and a basket press.
- Strive to produce varietal wines reflective of their terroir.
- Sell these wines at the tasting room door and in distribution.
THE CLIMATE -->