ABOUT THE VINOUS CALIFORNIA VINEYARD SERIES
Since 2015 we have been working on a large-scale project to map the vineyards of California. To date, we have published seven regional Napa Valley maps and have several more in the works, including a five-map set of Sonoma Valley and a map of the Santa Lucia Highlands, both of which are nearly finished. Although travel restrictions related to COVID-19 have delayed final, on-the-ground checks that are such an essential part of the quality control process, we are eager to share our work and show you a little bit of what we have been up to through this series of excerpts. We will have much more on Vinous Maps in 2021.
With its undulating hills and striking contours, Kamen is one of the most evocative estates in Sonoma. The vineyard is just a short drive from the town square, yet it feels very remote. Screenwriter Robert Mark Kamen bought his property in 1980, mostly for the views, as he tells it. “I had just sold the screenplay for The Karate Kid and I wanted to celebrate,” Kamen told me recently.
At the time there was no road, no electricity and no power. It is hard to imagine how anything at all was developed back then in such rugged terrain. Vineyard manager Phil Coturri planted the first vineyards in 1982, 34 acres of Cabernet and a bit of Sangiovese, on a large, expansive ranch that covered 300 acres. Coturri was an early advocate for organic and biodynamic farming at a time when sustainable approaches to viticulture were considered well outside the mainstream. Today, that expertise has made Coturri one of the most sought-after vineyard managers in the United States. Sadly, a large part of the property was destroyed in 1996 when a downed PG&E power line caused a large fire that devastated a number of estates on Moon Mountain. Kamen rebounded quickly. He replanted damaged blocks and then started his own label in 1999.
--Antonio Galloni, California Vineyard Series: Kamen Vineyard, May 2021
To read more about Kamen and take a look at the map block by block, check out the full article on Vinous now.
Check out Monte Rosso here .