The Laurel Glen Vineyard is steeped in history, and even a little prestige, with records documenting a vineyard first planted in the 1880’s. Replanted in 1968 to Cabernet Sauvignon vines, this is when the ideally located vineyard received its name, it is believed, after the towering Laurel trees that surround the property. For years the grapes were sold to notable wineries such as Chateau St. Jean. While much of the vineyard has since been planted to newer vines, some of the aged vines still grow there today. It is these old vines that received special recognition by UC Davis for being unique Cabernet Sauvignon clones.
Laurel Glen Vineyard really made a name for itself beginning in 1977 when Patrick Campbell purchased the property. A worthy steward of the vineyard until 2011, he brought winemaking in-house and introduced the first Cabernet Sauvignon under the Laurel Glen Vineyard label.
At the 2,463 ft (751 m) summit, Sonoma Mountain offers expansive views of the Pacific Ocean to to the west and the Sonoma Valley to the east. Up until about twelve million years ago, this location was part of the seabed of the Pacific Ocean. In the Miocene era a massive period of uplift ensued. This uplift formed the volcanically based Sonoma Mountains as well as the Mayacamas Mountains to the east. The viticultural area extends up the eastern slopes of Sonoma Mountain to almost 1,700 feet (520 m) in elevation. Laurel Glen Vineyard ranges from an elevation of 850 to 1,000 feet.
The eastern and northern slopes are protected from afternoon heat and hence are more densely forested in oak woodlands. Due west of Sonoma Mountain is the Sonoma coastal plain and a gap in the Pacific coastal range commonly known as the Petaluma Gap. The bulk of the mountain forms a windbreak against the coastal wind and fog intrusions through the Petaluma Gap and thus only the eastern slopes of Sonoma Mountain are suitable for growing Cabernet Sauvignon.
The Sonoma Mountain AVA is one of the smallest in Sonoma County at only 667 vineyard acres.
Today, Bettina Sichel leads a new team at LGV into the future. This group of wine loving friends is renowned in the community and take their duties seriously as they propel LGV to the next level. They are certainly off to a great start as Phil Coturri, Sonoma County’s leading organic and biodynamic viticulturist, has carried the winery to its first major success – organic status from CCOF in 2014. Read about the winery celebrating many milestones in 2021 on the blog.
The Laurel Glen Vineyard Tasting Room is located fifteen minutes from our estate vineyard on Sonoma Mountain in the charming hamlet of Glen Ellen, home to world class restaurants and inns. The winery offers seated tastings, by appointment.