" In the case of those interviewed for this story, the answer always came down to their value system, to what they believe in as a way of life, rather than the bottom line. According to Jean Arnold, the winery president, current production is about 3,000 cases.
Over the next five years, production is expected to top out at about 7,000 cases as a recently built production facility comes into full production.
"We did not think some of the other barrels were appropriate. I was able to gain approval for the decision with a five minute phone call with the owner." The declassified wine is sold on the bulk market, although Arnold said most of it was good enough to bring $30 or $40 a bottle as a second label.
Looking at the larger picture, Arnold said she is "deeply concerned" about the future for many artisan wine producers around the world.
I know this sounds trite but it is not, here," she said.
As examples taken from the vineyard side, Arnold said, "We prune rigorously to set the low yield we like for our vines.
The singular artisan producer of wine is an oasis in what has become a hyper-capitalist culture," he said.
Terrien said his decision to come to Hanzell had a lot to do with the history of the winery--it has the oldest Pinot Noir vines in California, and was the first New World winery to use all French barrels.
Hanzell owns 42 acres of vines and all wines are grown, produced and bottled on the property, a rare example of a completely estate winery in the European sense of the word.
Asked what particular issues with viticulture and wine production come with the territory of being a boutique producer, Arnold said: "The issues with viticulture and production with our size is that everything is done either by hand or in small-production scale.