Meet Ron Davis

The Good Life
Saturday, May 19th

Guy’s guest in this week’s adventure in food, wine, & fun for your ears is Ron Davis. Ron is the Executive Winemaker at Jordan Wineries. 


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Good afternoon welcome the program led to stop I can SS every Saturday noon to one it's good left guy and threw one and punters. I have done so many programs where I could say I wish you were here. This of course is certainly one of them we've been having a wonderful comments Sonoma. In the spring by breaking happening down in cows go to and gradually work up north I think by the time we leave little start being really agree down south. We're Jordan Weiner a you know it you've seen them wine list and your favorite restaurant. And hopefully you use some of your one budget and enter lives with some Jordan products. And it's attributable not only to an entire team of people. But to one guy in particular and Rob Davis is nice not to join us today the long time and forever one maker of Jordan rob welcome to the gutless as pleased to be your guy necessities in these lines yet and we'll talk about those but I told you this is your life. And we were just trying to think troll like him for the longest time held the position of being kind of the longest. 1 maker of Pacific property. And there was a couple of others but I think you've passed everybody now let's hear we've. 39 years. We're too. 42 I started in 76 of us will be cameras. Through that makes me feel old but I and I worked with jewel he we did actually a barrel experiment when he came out UC Davis. So yeah arousal had him to. Well let's talk about the beginning I think everyone who has ever enjoyed one line and has the opportunity to talk to someone. Are here one maker talk about their career one there is no formula. Third lawyers and doctors and farmers and pilots and oh my god everything. Where you went to Rob Davis give an arrest in their mind then and what brought you into the business long ago. Well I grew up in Sacramento and might think since I was one year old my folks always going to be a doctor. And UC Davis had a really good premed program and it wasn't going to Dave's just because it was. Thirty minute drive my folks house it was just a really really great competitive. Great for sciences and low sciences. It was my actually my roommate picked out the mean because he loves sports that. The patients tell you that when I was sitting next admissions officer UC Davis on a bus going to my folks house. When Saturday eighty summit she saw my little UC Davis emblem mushers because no actually your freshman nice yes financially better study hard because only one of four. Ever go on they just don't have the room. Paula had better study are like come back after steady for calculus doesn't seem a roommate sitting up. Buys that stance ruling class a line smelling of putting back then that's it. Roomy you can teach thinking why were you studying this. We thought about this when it's stating that the Al winemaker. I had no idea of the UC Davis is a school slice particular classes I got some scholarships to the program which just actually fellow with the students and professors. And once I got my junior I said. You know mom data rich. This is what I wanted to do and my dad I think have the best advice for Reese's whenever you do sign pictures your hobby and this is probably best hobby ever read my life. Such an interesting time when you think back you know forty plus years ago fifty years ago. Our one making business compared to our friends in France is infantile. And so you can take credit. Not only for working with some of the real no couldn't founder of over one business but for being a big part of that. Tell us how you migrated from Davidson to the business and where you work him. And your relationship with Andre Cilic the mastered doctor of one. I graduated 1976. And I started the first harvest of Jordan just by luck or they were just building the action depending on the roof when I was doing the interview. And later on when they hired me in a certain worked with Andrea and he tightened up to people born into a sandbox together by a he is 55 years my senior yet energy wise I could not keep up put them he was just brilliant and ways of never holding to a certain plan is always when you learn more but here is a guy that was perfect for me because my education. And here as particular experience in California came over 1938. W made wind energy 72 and and consulting up to that but. He was trained in California am and in observing you know third production techniques. But more important to me as he was experienced in Europe not just France but throughout Europe but particularly for France because as George were such frank of files and they embarked upon their journey may wind. To to emulate French points not California wines and I think he could not have had a better partnership with the Jordan family and under Cilic at them and then my a in deep brain that this. How has pretty much wet wet clay to deal to be molded by the end that it was my experience with Andre eighteen years of traveling throughout Europe with them. And learning what he described as the empirical wisdom to avoid making that. I think that definitely held rain over our Wendy in California just based on technology to create an I mean those met magical years for me. And look at technology you know we I think we had good technology. From the beginning compared to some of our old world producers and look what's happened today. The use of technology William keeping track of tanks. Used to be agrees border clipboard with paper and and now you consider your office and look at every tank and things that are going on a winery. It's going to be interesting an interesting and revolution that and I would hope it always makes her job a lot easier. Oh absolutely it keeps evolving and I think. No when I start and end at Jordan 76. You know really the benchmark for all winds globally. Was Bordeaux Burgundy or Chris sparkling wine or champagne but it was all really was France was not. Not Australia New Zealand and South Africa. Italy from Germany anyway it was all France and of course it was only 2301 original California at that time now there's over 5000. But the technology itself really was born through UC Davis in fact when I was fifteen to receive Bordeaux a lot of my peers students there. I said push your lucky to go to the Davis 'cause they felt it was better school. And I cut having both was really important to me because there were things I learned and art and craft that was in touch me Davis. But the dean of the technology right is evolve so much. But I remember I was on a panel what that John demonstrable breed known as somebody asked him about California winemaking Kenny said. California winemaking is astronomy compared to French way of making this is astrology. And I thought about that was a great quote because we were very we under we understood this technology. In what a lot of ways much better than what was going on France but then I think what singularly separated us from. What I learned at UC Davis from what I've learned to Bordeaux. Was important to soil puts attack what we called Terrell or the combination of soil and climate and how those were together with specific cult of our. And that I think is where you get the real quality elements of he anywhere in the whole world where you're going you match. He missed a right Terrell or at that cult of you can compete with any great ones the world that singling what I learned to if there's one thing. And learn. Noisy things wandered the one thing which he claimed her from under it was always seek the right soil and climate of fear for your fruit and we were doing at that time that the 76. For a and appellation that should be known it is now known for cabernet and a board over idols. There 80% of wind was light winds market driven C had up a cold climate like variety like Moscow can only diverts demeanor. That. All station varieties that require very cool climate and we're growing it in very warm climate but it was a market driven. And that was what was unique thing about. Jordan we are pregnant through what it would we where we we recognized. Held and valleys and appellation was desperate for red grapes bright so that's what that's what I think now was caught up and that's what your but he's doing. Everywhere and it means Washington State benefited by the mistakes that we've made in California but other growing regions are benefiting by. Some of the successes in less than successful things that have happened in Washington State and I think they're ready realizes that. What and where you plant does the key to starting out well in the beginning Tom Jordan wanted to make this in a state. Production everything was home grown right here on this beautiful chunk of land. And I know there were some issues and several years ago you and I drew over a misty day. And you showed us some of the vineyards that you brought into the into the family now that that's expanded from outside the state. Talk a little bit about why the estate stuff wasn't working out and then some of the vineyards and you have access to now. Tom Jordan has major success in his life is with his oil explorations you know a real true locator and so he's. He's trained in geology certainly you know working with the earth sciences but. He looked at what separates the premiere of growing cruise you know all pre owned. Wood tones and the feet of the tour I mean it's even civil law can be truce in fact. When I would you go to visit if you get it's looking good fortune to go has been truce and I I was just it. You know all of us have gone to two hours to wineries that. There's a singular moment woods wins that as a guest you are formed something of this you'll never forget. As we got to pay truce in so many of us is winemakers acknowledges it will select what separates this quality. But the truce stick goes for 2500 dollars bottle compared to you know fifty dollar and above all winded he McNabb is making. And she's. She took me out to the vineyard she dug her hand to silence because this is only need to know that Beatrice. The state to state grown so. When ice what I recognized and as she was holding her hand. Almost like the Bible you know this is beautiful beautiful soil that is so different if we choose to be anywhere else. But Tom Jordan I think he looked at that is it ownership controls the most important thing you what we used to call is great growing LE calls wine growing. And you're growing the wine had in your vineyard and he thought that if you have apps to control of that. Which is really chew you make the decisions you know on on the snap which is a report were good mother nature your chance of success is much better so we felt that I got the climate. I got a great call to bar and I've got great Farmar great to have two cultures that we had. And what I think was missing was a particular soil that we had the soul that our state we had more of more close it on your demeanor to use a French expires in but it was more deeper lonely soils two to behind bigger. And when mice studies with Andre traveling around. When you do what you want is really well trained soils. And you can have like there's that cult care of limestone to talk about Burgundy. I mean just just when you're at it but debenture of I'm on the bottom of seem to me Leon and you take the walk up that road there if you leave a very simple. Toward the more reverb. Based soil type. That's prone to give you like it to the fifteen dollar following Angela BC a limestone soils change next you know you knew that Canada. 512100. Mile wide I mean always in the same appellation so to speaks in but. It's oil were so important I think Tom you know after a tie game that wasn't. Considered a priority for choosing your vineyard he just shows climate and an obstacle to Marty gets some good farmers. And like you said even back then. All these varieties that we're being. Grown in. Appellation that was appropriate to it. Nobody even thought about that. Pieces you know I only need to do so much food as much prize much when they can't and mr. sun will always make it easy for me and and I remember all my friends when it has to France they were saying. Mr. sentence is really. You have too much of content and I I think that's because some of those Friday just when appropriate that and I think wind. John Jordan when he came on a 2005. And I you know I'm sure his father it was coaches involved Iran's gonna tell you this you know he can be very. We can be very argument and veto any hazard and I ended literally from day one from Tom and I've always been an odd you know we we got along just great. Except when it came to the the propriety of the price to soil. And these kind of crimes is like you know we just all you need to skip. Maturity or maturity was in the index was great it wasn't. Now feel was intensity of fruit and you know it was much compare with until I started looking in and getting other fruit and I start showing to John. And is John which the smell of this and we just know this and he he could hear it could easily see the distinction between the two. And he's I don't care about authorship I don't care about a state I just won't make great points compete with the world. Ice if Lance brings in might but I would shut up and hit the moon I just came out of my chair and what this is what I wanted to do I mean it was like. Given B two extra wings to fly and I started from Dan on a surge of super fruit. And I mean the winds we see here where 100% Russian river a 100% growers because all those growers in selected have massed close to. As close I get to the soil structures that works so well Burgundy. And there is that there is some difference is we don't have limestone but we do have gravel and and Michael -- has gravel and you contain some of that. Pumps into the that the intensity of food that comes from that nice if it's not hiding your soil is at it and he keeps the bigger down the importance of fruit I think. And dancing thing with cabernet in and the Murillo and that we ought to be do you Virgo later on because we finally found I cleaned up through stock cleaned up my neck. There are flaws as far as I know petite for go up till 1990s. If he'd I think. It had had just had a virus that you you know you planet it eight years later pulling down they finally clean it up and that's turned out be a nice addition toward Linda but overall it's in Italy the employing relieve the wisdom of the technology that I learned to Davis but also certainly plea that empirical wisdom of thousands of years of port that France is done in particular and it is same thing if Italy it leads to the super test that's are born exactly on that reason that there's. You're they discovered soils that more corporate recovered it in Solingen daisy and I have these this is incredible. To you know as I mean this is it's a lie as just great great lines and I think that's that's when I think the fun of this fro the consumer point of view. It's not great wine is not just relegated to just one particular area it's related to now you can go. There's friends of miners and Washington they're just producing brilliant line some really cavern days. There's a pin Allard I think in Oregon competes very well some of the great indoors in Burgundy I've been down to an end Tasmania I had when the best viewers in my life. Where they had to use so close to the Arctic Circle and you're going woo voters in Oregon that. Pay as you go diesel areas and you find. That's what this one in New Zealand just blew me away and I think we're all learning not to be. Who is subsist and on and our own particular well this is our front yards of this what we're gonna use may be front yard across our neighbor has a better chance and that's I think what's happening today and we're. Lucky I tell folks that I talked to all the time about one that there's never been a better time to be in the one business for more importantly. To be on the side of the table drink in one because it's just there's so many great ones produced you know fifty years ago who people were put someone's in bottles that. You would case ago. Oh my god why would they do that you know well how how can they get away with them somewhat of the model. And today nobody does that but. What a great thing where Jordan vineyards and winery if you haven't been make an appointment trying to get in. One tourism here Jordan has evolved from the point of very few and mostly people in the trade to now that. You can come here and you should he even if you just get the come up here and look around the property UB two world. Rob Davis of you'll stay with we will take a quick break come back out little more time got Barrett to let them go to Europe.