Conversations with Hanzell’s Michael McNeill
Welcome to Part 2 of my conversation with Michael McNeill of California’s Hanzell Vineyards. Today, McNeill discusses Grand Cru farming practices and the ways in which Hanzell has been a leader in winemaking innovation thanks to Brad Webb, its first winemaker, and founder Ambassador James Zellerbach throughout its 62 year existence.
Hanzell Vineyards, located in Sonoma, is celebrating both its 50th vintage and the fact that it now possesses the oldest, continuously producing vines in North America. The winery is small and very much a hands-on operation in almost every aspect of the winemaking process. McNeill, winemaker emeritus Bob Sessions, and owner Alexander De Brye, strive to produce classic Burgundian-style Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines just as Ambassador James Zellerbach set out to do in 1948.
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