High desert terrain, timeless mountainside terroir, snow-capped peaks lining the horizon… Why travel to Argentina or Germany to experience a winery set in such a picturesque location when Colorado’s Grand Valley has it all?
With such an ideal growing environment, it’s no wonder that the Colorado wine industry has taken off in recent years. One winery that has been there since before the boom – and is still setting the local standards – is Garfield Estates. Winning numerous awards over the years for all of their wines including their popular Cabernet Franc and Syrah vintages, Garfield Estates is perhaps the region’s most well known winery. Yet it is not just notoriety and numbers that establish a winery’s success, according to Garfield Estates owner Jeff Carr.
Carr explains that there are three essential factors that contribute to the creation of a great wine: good grapes, quality facilities and an experienced winemaker. For Garfield Estates, this translates into growing all of their own fruit with sustainable practices, utilizing state-of-the-art equipment, and hiring a third-generation German winemaker. Now that’s a recipe for success.
Working in the dry Colorado climate has also allowed Garfield Estates to experiment with greener practices than those of most of their traditional California and Mediterranean counterparts. Growing at such a high altitude and low humidity, there is much less pest pressure and rotting problems that normally amount to the need for high volumes of pesticides and invasive tilling. Carr is making a conscious effort to integrate the most cutting-edge and environmentally friendly practices available into Garfield Estates with the hope that these practices will pay off in the long-run health of his vineyard.
Upon examining owner Jeff Carr’s commitment to quality and innovation, it is no wonder that regional wineries such as Colorado’s Garfield Estates are garnering attention without the mass marketing techniques of some of their larger, more established competitors. So how does Carr get the message out about Garfield Estates: “I let the wine speak for itself.” We’re going to let the Garfield Estates Malbec 2008 do just that…