- By Kimberly Horg •
m2 Wines opens a new Tasting Room
Last year, m2 Wines opened a new winery and tasting room on Peltier Road in Acampo. Bigger is often better; the “industrial chic” bar is three times larger than the old place so customers can spread out and enjoy the wine. The winery has metal accents with high ceilings and windows with modern furnishings, hidden inside a large industrial building.
The winery originally opened in 2006 but over the years it has grown; now producing around 3,800 cases a year of small-lot single varietals and blends including the 2012 Trio Red Wine which is 60 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 35 percent Syrah and 5 percent Petite Syrah. It is complex and multi layered and pairs beautifully with most grilled dishes.
Great Lodi Zinfandels head the Line-up of Varietals
Also bottled last year was the 2013 Viognier, which is crisp, clean with racy acidity. The vibrant aromas of green apples, pear and grapefruit can be tasted in every sip. M2’s flagship wine is the 2012 Old Vine Zinfandel. This Zin comes from the oldest block of Soucie Vineyard, which was planted in 1916. Rich and fruity, velvety smooth with beautiful notes of American oak, toast and spice, it is bold yet jammy.
Their current lineup also includes 2012 Petite Sirah, 2012 Select Block Zinfandel, 2012 Granite Ridge Syrah, and 2012 Tormenta Tempranillo.
Founding Partner and Winemaker
Layne Montgomery, founding partner and winemaker has been making Zin since 2002. He started making wine in 1999 as a hobby and began in 2004 professionally at m2.
“I can’t imagine doing anything else,” he said.
The former broadcaster says the Trio blend is his favorite wine to make but says the Zin is incredible. According to him it is an “American grape” and Lodi is the best place in California to grow Zinfandel. His version is a much richer and stronger varietal than others.
“My favorite is the Old Vine Zin, it is a wonderful fruit forward wine,” Roberta Sparkman, m2 wine pourer, said. After enjoying m2 as a wine club member for the past six years, Sparkman started working in the tasting room a couple years ago. She loves talking to people about her passion for m2 Wines.
She says the new location is fantastic not only because they needed more room, but because it is off the main drag, convenient for wine enthusiasts to enjoy.
“I was pleasantly surprised when I walked in. When I pulled up I didn’t know what to expect. Needless to say, I am very pleased,” m2 customer and Los Angeles resident Kathleen Flores, said.
A Winery in a Vineyard
Co-owner Ted Woodruff says when he sat down with the other six owners to plan out the new spot; he had an idea in his mind of what they needed.
“I wanted a winery in a vineyard, amongst the grapes. I didn’t want a winery in a gift shop because our focus is on wine,” he said. “I had the concept and took it higher because this is the most beautiful tasting room in the valley.”
Montgomery agrees, the Soucie vineyard has proven to be in the top five in the area. The vineyard is one of the most unique in the region and is consistently one of the best. “I have been working with the vineyard for so long that I know each year it is different,” Montgomery said.
The vineyard blocks are hand harvested. Sometimes they’ll harvest a vineyard twice; first to ensure acidity (which gives brightness and longevity) and a second time to capture the full flavor.
To celebrate the new space, m2 planted Zinfandel vines on the new winery property. These vines are growing healthy expecting to reach fruit-producing maturity in three years. When it is ready, m2 Estate wine will be added to their portfolio. Future plans also include installing solar power.
The new tasting room can be found at 2900 East Peltier Road; open Thursday through Monday from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. For more information visit m2wines.com or call 209-339-1071.