Alex Krause and John Locke founded Birichino in Santa Cruz in 2008. Drawing on a combined four decades making wine in California, France, Italy, and beyond, they are focused on attaining the perfect balance of perfume, poise, and puckishness. Sourcing from a number of carefully farmed, family-owned, own-rooted 19th and early 20th century vineyards (and a few from the late disco era) planted by and large in more moderate, marine-influenced climates, their preoccupation is to safeguard the quality and vibrance of their raw materials. Their preference is for minimal intervention, most often favoring native fermentations, employing stainless or neutral barrels, minimal racking and fining, and avoiding filtration altogether when possible. But most critically, their aim is to make delicious wines that give pleasure, revitalize, and revive.
Birichino Old Vines Chenin Blanc 2017, Jurassic Park Vineyard
This pretty wine sports a perfume of orange blossom honey, apple butter, brimstone, and fresh cut lilac. Fermented in stainless steel without inoculation, and was aged in 8 stainless and 2 neutral Hungarian oak barrels.
Birichino Vin Gris 2020, California
A blend of Grenache 62%, Mourvèdre 12%, Cinsault 11%, Carignane 9%, and Vermentino 6%. Aromas of stone fruits, hibiscus, and watermelon dominate the perfume, with the ever delightful Cinsault contributing the violet top note, and a small quantity of particularly fresh and vivid Vermentino from the Napa side of Carneros adding some zest. Entirely the product of a very gentle direct press in 2020, the Vin Gris is fermented to dryness in one long, sequential fermentation in stainless
Birichino 'Scylla' Red Blend 2018, California
93 Points - Wine Enthusiast
91 Points - Vinous
Composed of 50% Carignane, 48% Grenache, and 2% Mourvèdre. Aromas of soil, game, and freshly crushed cran-raspberry and strawberry. There's a rugged, meaty tone to the sip, which is offset by bright and snappy pomegranate flashes, leading into pepper and herbs toward the finish.