Twisted Roots Celebrates its 100th Anniversary in 2018
Art and Culture Tasting Room Renovation Completed, Expanded Hours, Music Series Announced and More! Salinas, CA, May 22, 2018 - The Schmiedt family vineyard, was first planted with wine grapes in the rich soil of Lodi in 1918. But it took the family 87 years to decide to use those grapes to make their own wines in addition to selling the grapes to winemakers around the state. That was 2005, when Twisted Roots Vineyards was born and Ross Schmiedt produced a Petite Sirah because of an overabundance of the grape. In 2009, production was expanded to include other varietals on the estate, including Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Old Vine Zinfandel.
The winemaking operation was moved from an old farmhouse to their partners at Estate Crush in Lodi, a dedicated custom crush facility for premium wine production that continues to produce Twisted Roots wines from grapes grown at the Schmiedt Vineyards. In 2010, Josh Ruiz partnered with Mike Hodge and Ross Schmiedt to create Twisted Roots Wine LLC. Schmiedt passed away in March of 2014 and his place in the partnership was filled by his wife Susan Schmiedt. Twisted Roots raised a few eyebrows when it opened a tasting room in Carmel Valley in 2013. “At first, some of the other winemakers were leery about having a Lodi winery here,” Ruiz told Carmel magazine,“ but they’ve accepted us.” New Ownership In January of 2016, Ruiz and his wife Julie, who is Schmiedt's niece and Hodge's daughter, bought Twisted Roots from the family. A few months later, the Ruizes brought on board a few college friends to help expand the business. “My wife Julie and I bought the family business in January and in June we brought in three of our college friends, who live in different locations in the state, to help us grow the business,” said Ruiz. “I knew that with a full-time job in the Salinas Valley Produce business, I needed help. These are all trusted friends, who have become like family, and it's all about growing the business. I can't do it myself.” Ruiz, who graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with both a bachelor's and master's degree in Agribusiness, asked his college friends Andy Gulley of Fresno, Matt Brem of Salinas and Neil Amarante of Paso Robles (and Andy and Matt's wives, both named Laura), to join Twisted Roots. Ruiz said the three new partners' skill sets would be invaluable in reaching the company's goals. Gulley is an agricultural pest control advisor, Brem owns Produce West, a Salinas produce brokerage, and Amarante is an agricultural lender. Also joining Twisted Roots as a partner is Matt and Whitney Pridey, who are currently managing Twisted Roots' wine club, events, and general business development. Whitney is also the sister of new partner Matt Brem. Grapes Planted in 1918 According to Ruiz, the founders of the vineyards, planted grapes on their new property in 1918 because their neighbors were growing grapes. The original Schmiedt vineyard was planted to over 100 acres in what is known as the Dairy Vineyard, and later expanded to include the CLR Vineyards, named after the three sons, Carl, Leland and Ross, of Gust and Dorothy Schmiedt (The original visionaries). The eventual name was conceived by Ross, who came across a tangle of old rootstock and mused, “Twisted Roots would make a good name for the vineyards and winery,” and it stuck. The appellation in a general sense is Lodi, but the specific appellation is the “Mokelumne River”, which Ruiz believes makes the grapes and wines produced completely different from the rest of the Lodi AVA’s.
The corner stone of the Mokelumne River AVA is the river itself, which help to keep the Schmiedt vineyard temps just a bit cooler, in the hot Lodi summer days. Ruiz said 2017 has been the winery's biggest year yet, producing 1,000 cases of four varietals, including its signature “1918” Old Vine Zinfandel, created from vines planted in 1918. The other three varietals are the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2012 Petite Sirah and the 2015 Chardonnay. He said Twisted Roots is looking at a “steady growth” of 10 to 20 percent per year, with the new partners on board to reach those goals. “It's still a family operation with roots in Lodi,” says Ruiz. “They really are my family, that's why they're partnering with me. We're bringing it all into the Twisted Roots family.” Tasting Room Renovation: “When developing the design concept for Twisted Roots, it was important for us to deliver a comfortable space where guests feel at home to not just taste wine, but to grab a glass of wine, or two, and relax for a while. Craft Design-Build partnered with several local artisans to deliver custom solutions using elements that represent our unique Central Coast Vibe (Santa Cruz redwood, leather, seagrass, stone, hot rolled steel and glass). “Our goal was to design a space that was visually appealing, but not overwhelming. The monochromatic colors and textures offer subtle interest without taking away from your wine-tasting experience. “A highlight of the space is the 1918 room, honoring Twisted Roots 100-year-old vines. As you slide open the custom steel barn door, you will enter a space with two sophisticated chandeliers hovering above a rustic 10-foot long farmhouse table . This space was created to host many different types of events from intimate tastings, to dinner parties, to viewing sporting events. “It was a true honor to work with the Twisted Roots team to make their dream a reality.” — Jon and Meryl DeYoung Rasmussen, Craft Design-Build Inc. Craft Design-Build is a full-service design/build firm specializing in both commercial and residential construction throughout Monterey County. High Resolution Photos Available For Download To view the gallery click on this link, http://www.richardgreenphotography.com/Chatterbox-Public-Relations/Twisted-Roots-Interior-Shots-4-8-18/, enter password, chatter, lowercase. 100th Anniversary Celebration In 2018, Twisted Roots plans to celebrate 100 years since the vines were planted in Lodi. The festivities will include special events, wine deals, and wine club giveaways, culminating in a glitzy, black-tie, 1920s-style Hollywood party at their tasting room in Carmel Valley, which use to be the Lyons Head Art Gallery, next to Café Rustica. Save the Date for: Twisted Roots Announces Its Summer Concert Series at its newly renovated Tasting Room from June – August 2018! June-Concert -June 10, 4-6PM -No food, Guests can bring snacks -$15 gets entrance, a free glass, live music, FREE FOR MEMBERS -Music: Wild Turkeys (https://www.facebook.com/Wild-Turkeys-166319330279/) July-Concert -July 8, 4-6 -No food, Guests can bring snacks -$15 gets entrance, a free glass, live music, FREE FOR MEMBERS -Music- Rise Up (http://riseupreggae.com) August-Concert -August 12, 4-6PM -No food, Guests can bring snacks -$15 gets entrance, a free glass, live music, FREE FOR MEMBERS Taylor Rae (http://www.taylorraemusic.com)- Twisted Roots will be the wine partner for Peace of Mind Dog Rescue Local’s Wine Night Out at the Hofsas House September 21st. Celebrate National Pumpkin Day on the Twisted Roots Patio. Paint a pumpkin, sip Twisted Roots Wine and support Animal Friends Rescue Project October 24th. Don’t miss out on Twisted Roots Special 100-year Anniversary Winemakers Dinner exclusively at the Whaling Station Restaurant in Monterey November 8th. Twisted Roots will at the Hofsas House Hotel Annual Gingerbread House Fundraiser supporting the Carmel Library Foundation December 8th. Build a house for a cause while sipping bubbles from Twisted Roots. Contact: Marci Bracco Cain Chatterbox PR Salinas, CA 93901 (831) 747-7455 http://www.twistedrootsvineyard.com