Leo and Evelyn Trentadue have always been people of the land.
In 1959, developers were encroaching on their apricot and cherry orchards in Sunnyvale, California, so the Trentadues – seeking to preserve their rural lifestyle – relocated to a then-remote area of Sonoma County known as Alexander Valley.
(Post_script: Today, Sunnyvale is in the heart of what has become the world-famous Silicon Valley.)
The 208-acre Alexander Valley property was blessed with an excellent combination of climate, soil and water. It formerly was the site of Heart’s Desire Nursery, a major supplier of young tree stock to orchardists throughout the West.
Dry farming and horse-drawn ploughs were the norm in Alexander Valley when the Trentadues arrived. Leo introduced advanced irrigation practices to the vineyards, and was among the first to plant new vines in Sonoma County since the repeal of Prohibition.
Like most Italian winemakers (this is a sweeping generalization alert), the Trentadues loved hearty red wines. Over the years, the family has had great success with Carignane, Sangiovese and Zinfandel, all of which have won top awards in major wine competitions.
In fact, the Trentadues have long supplied grapes to Ridge Vineyards, one of the worldâ€™s most acclaimed Zin producers. And today, Victor Trentadue manages vineyard land not only for his family, but also for Ridge.