Just down the road from the Old Mission Santa Ynez “La Presa Vineyard” sits on a gentle slope overlooking the Santa Ynez River. The Land once used for seasonal cattle grazing between the mainland & the Channel Islands now nourishes nine grape varieties. Owned by Wendy Caldwell-Altman’s Family (Eric & Carleen Caldwell) since 1972. The first grapes were planted at La Presa in 1974.
Over the years an evolved understanding of the specific soils, terrain, micro climate, sunlight exposures and moisture conditions, the expression of the fruit is continually being refined. Albarino, Chardonnay, Grenache Blanc, Grenache Noir, Marsanne, Petite Sirah, Riesling, Rousanne, and Sauvignon Blanc are cultivated on the estate.
Wendy and Mike Altman made their first wine from La Presa grapes in 2002 when the fruit from the first planting of Petite Sirah developed mature fruit. That wine made such an impression that the course was set. In 2008 Altman Wine was begun and Petite Sirah is our flagship variety.
Wendy’s family continues to live and work the La Presa property, Eric & Carleen host extended family and friends for wine and food. Eric is a self-taught gourmet cook, prolific gardener and wine grower, Carleen is a consummate hostess, decorator and grapevine entrepreneur.
The Altmans and Caldwell's now host tastings, Plein Air Art workshops, Lunch & Dinner tasting events for friends and small private groups by invitation at the Vineyard.
"The connection between us, the land and the people involved with the wine and food we love is always in focus" - Mike Altman.