The Phillips family has been farming since our Great Great Grandfather Andrew Harshner and his wife Lucille homesteaded 160 acres near the town of Lodi, following the Civil War in the 1860's. The region's natural affinity for grape growing quickly became evident, and by the turn of the century (the last one), twenty-five percent of California's grape acreage was in Lodi. A generation later saw the demise of many pioneering wineries in the state.
Originally devoted to vegetables, the Phillips' farms evolved to include many different fruits, including fifteen different wine varietals that were shipped throughout the country during Prohibition with instructions on "how not to have the grapes turn into wine". Thereby, Prohibition was good for Lodi growers, with families everywhere keeping up the tradition of wine with meals by ordering these grapes and "juice" to be bottled at home.
These days, Michael and David Phillips represent the fifth generation of growers in Lodi, and things are changing. With 350 acres of premium wine grapes, there is plenty of room for experimentation and innovation. The vineyards are irrigated by the Mokelumne River, which carries crystal-clear water from the Sierra Nevada Mountains, depositing minerals into the rich soils upon which the grapes thrive. Though not certified organic, Michael~David Vineyards strives to use all natural methods including integrated pest management, beneficial insects for pest control, trellising, leaf pulling and natural mined sulfur for mildew control.
Michael~David Vineyards uses only some ten percent of their total harvest for their own production. Their varieties include Syrah, Merlot, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Viognier, Roussanne, Chardonnay and Symphony. Because of the contract production, there is a clear advantage to being able to hand-select specific clusters of grapes to go into their own production. All the wines that Michael~David Vineyards produces remain true to their varietal characteristics. The family is proud of the many medals the wines have earned in international competitions.
Visit the Michael David website