Since our first vintage in 1999, Windy Oaks driving objective has been to produce world-class Pinot Noir that faithfully represents our unique vineyard terroir, with no compromises. Our winemaking begins in our vineyards, which we farm in a fully sustainable way, using many organic and biodynamic practices.
In the winery, our philosophy is to use a minimal intervention approach to fully preserve the grape quality achieved in our vineyards. Nothing is rushed—every effort is made to let the wine evolve naturally to its best expression. Hence, the winery is all-gravity, wines are aged on their lees in French oak for 17 to 27 months, and all wines are bottled without filtering or fining.
Windy Oaks was founded in 1996 by Jim and Judy Schultze, when they returned to California after living overseas for 7 years in Australia and Europe. On a windy ridge in Corralitos, overlooking Monterey Bay, they planted their first three acres of Pinot Noir. With Jim as Winemaker, they produced their first vintage of Pinot Noir in 1999. The next year, they built the new winery building and continued to expand their Pinot Noir plantings, while also planting an acre of Chardonnay. Today, they farm a total of 26 acres of Pinot noir and their original acre of Chardonnay.