Tweeter button
Facebook button
Digg button

Home » Wes Hagen » Recent Articles:

Doon on the Clos {In Pictures}

May 17, 2012 The Press Comments Off
Doon on the Clos {In Pictures}

Doon on the Clos was a huge success! At the end of all the planning and phone calls, emails and tweets, people showed up, people drank, they ate, they listened, and they bought wine.

A highlight of the evening was an open discussion on biodynamics as well as the philosophies of Bonny Doon’s Randall Grahm and Clos Pepe’s Wes Hagen. It was spirited, let’s put it that way. As I get some time, we will post some of that content.

We were thrilled to have our friend Jeremy Ball in attendance. Jeremy is one of the most talented wine and food photographers on the Central Coast and his company, Bottle Branding, works with the best producers in Santa Barbara County. We have gotten to know Jeremy over the last few years and are big fans of his work.

All the images in this gallery are his and we are thankful to have them! Spend some time on his site, it is beautiful work. … Continue Reading

The Winemakers of A Long Pour {photo essay}

June 22, 2011 The Press Comments Off
The Winemakers of A Long Pour {photo essay}

For a second year in a row, A Long Pour is a finalist for the Wine Blog Awards, this time for Best Graphics, Photography, and Presentation (you can vote here). A Long Pour is a lot of hard work and it is nice to get some recognition. But really, all of this made me think of the many great winemakers who have invited me into their wineries and homes, told me their stories, shared their wines, and in some cases let me take their picture.

This is to them…thank you. … Continue Reading

“The Beginning of the End and One Hell of a Scare” By: Wes Hagen

“The Beginning of the End and One Hell of a Scare” By: Wes Hagen

Today is a good day.  A really, really good day.  I haven’t felt so relaxed in months.  After finishing the longest day of the vintage yesterday I knew that we wouldn’t have to wake up for a 3 am pick this morning, so I initially reserved the right to go out with the crew for a few drinks last night—stay up late and be crazy—like at least 10:00 pm!

But (lo and behold), come 7:18 pm I was man down in our bed, which is a bit later than I have been going to sleep, but not exactly a bedtime that denotes an iron man party-when-I-can mentality.  And I’m OK with that.  I didn’t wake up until after 7 am and those 12 hours of pure and unadulterated sleep were a revelation. … Continue Reading

Sea Smoke Cellars – This Is Sea Smoke

August 26, 2010 Archieves 13 Comments
Sea Smoke Cellars – This Is Sea Smoke

I have seen two of Bob Davids’ homes. One is a gorgeous tropical pavilion in the foothills of Mount Batur, Bali. The other, is a 20′ tow behind trailer perched high on a hillside overlooking his Sta. Rita Hills vineyard. The first I saw on page 68 of August’s Architectural Digest and the latter I saw in person a few weeks ago.

To understand the home in Indonesia, you need to know that Mr. Davids did well for himself as CEO of one of the world’s largest toy companies. To understand the second, the trailer, which seems an odd choice for a man with the ability to live where he pleases, you need to understand the vineyard he planted and what he has accomplished on its wind blown slopes. It is an unlikely home for both Davids and the Pinot Noir grapes he loves.

… Continue Reading

“A Walk in the Fog & 09′ Clos Pepe Pinot Noir from Barrel” By: Wes Hagen

“A Walk in the Fog & 09′ Clos Pepe Pinot Noir from Barrel” By: Wes Hagen

Welcome once again to the Year in the Vineyard Blog.  We continue with our new High Def video blogs, to give you as much visual input as possible.  There’s times when the written word can describe what’s happening in a vineyard, but I’m a big believer in getting out in the vines when I have visitors and getting them to see, touch, smell and understand what’s going on here.

With this in mind, I would like to continue posting blogs each week from the vineyard and the winery so you can get an intimate view and understanding of my job as a vineyard manager and winemaker for Clos Pepe.  This week we post part 2 of the barrel tasting: the Pinot Noir, and a ‘Walk in the Fog’—my take on how the fruit and the 2010 vintage is maturing. … Continue Reading

“The Birth of an American Viticultural Area” By: Wes Hagen

“The Birth of an American Viticultural Area” By: Wes Hagen

Let’s take a slightly different view of the wine world this week.  I’d like to leave the nuts and bolts of vineyard management for a few moments and discuss the descriptive system of wine appellations in the United States, a Federal program overseen by the TTB, or Tax and Trade Bureau.  But before you start to think that this is going to be a boring blog full of bellicose bureaucracy, let me guarantee that I will be injecting the subject with enough interesting anecdote and incisive commentary to keep it interesting and entertaining (although pouring a tall glass of pinot noir makes any of my blogs more palatable).

First, a quick vineyard update.  The weather has taken another cool, foggy and windy turn as low pressure trofs continue to move over the Central Coast, keeping us in the high 60’s.  While most folks don’t think about June in California as sweater weather, it really has been.  There have been some warm days, as well, but the nights have been in the high 40’s and the vines are growing slowly, methodically, and finishing their fruit set and marching toward bunch closure in a very patient and easy manner.  Cool weather means we’ll turn off the irrigation for a few weeks until we see a warm up and an increase in evapotranspiration, which is a measurement of how much water is both being used by a plant and how much is evaporating out of the soil. … Continue Reading

Clos Pepe – Battle For the Soul of Pinot

April 14, 2010 Fifty-Two Weeks 6 Comments
Clos Pepe – Battle For the Soul of Pinot

Wes Hagen makes it easy for one to get excited about visiting him at the Sta. Rita Hills vineyard he manages. “Put your thinking cap on,” he told me, “this place may blow your mind,” Sta. Rita Hills has certainly blown his.

The guy is nuts about his little slice of pinot paradise called Clos Pepe, and rightfully so. The Sta. Rita Hills is a special part of the Central Coast, and Wes appreciates the piece of land he farms maybe more than any other winemaker I have met. He talks fast and colorfully often using wild hand gestures, like a magician crafting an illusion.

When we first spoke over email, he encouraged me to visit him at Clos Pepe (pronounced clo, with a long O and no S, and peppy), because as he said, “you have to kick the dirt and breathe the air to get this place.” Wes gets it. … Continue Reading

{Archives}

Bonny Doon: Day of the Doon IX {Photo Essay}

September 22, 2011

Bonny Doon: Day of the Doon IX {Photo Essay}

We have grown rather accustomed to long trips for short stays, so much so that a 500 mile weekend is not such a big deal anymore. There are a lot of events we are invited to and we can only attend a few of them. But when Randall Graham asks you to attend, you attend. [...]

Secret Project {the reveal}

August 17, 2011

Secret Project {the reveal}

A few weeks ago I posted the “Secret Project” with some shots of  a friend’s new winery taking shape. At the time, the space was still in a raw state, holes in the ground, bare walls, cut concrete. In terms of photographing a new winery, one might say there was not much to see, no [...]

{People We Like}

Studio Holladay
Municipal Winemakers
Kunin Wines