Growing Grapes on the Sonoma Coast


SCV's unique growing area is located west of the Russian River Valley and centered around the quaint town of Freestone, only five miles from the cold Pacific Ocean. This dramatically cold environment, on the far western edge of Sonoma County, poses great challenges for growing grapes but it is well worth the risk. The potential of the Sonoma Coast to produce wines of exceptional complexity, expressing their true varietal and terroir characteristics is extremely rewarding. Wine writer Robert M. Parker Jr. describes the Sonoma Coast AVA as the region "...where world class Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays are being made that are every bit as complex and complete as the greatest wines of France." (Savor Wine Country Magazine)


SCV's focus is cold-climate viticulture that encourages the full expression of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay not seen in warmer regions. We have pioneered and are crafting uniquely-styled Sauvignon Blanc and Syrah highlighting the distinctive characteristics of the Sonoma Coast. The long, cold growing season typically results in our harvesting well into late October and early November. The result is fruit of intense complexity with high levels of natural acidity. The character of this fruit, combined with innovative and skilled winemaking of Tony Austin, allows us to create wines that marry elegance and complexity with balance.

Vineyard Partnerships

The true Sonoma Coast is mostly populated by adventurous growers with only tiny parcels of land who share a passion and philosophy with John, Barbara and Tony to make wines that have the potential to be among the best in the world. When John, Barbara and Tony established SCV, they sought out these existing, young vineyards and forged long-term partnerships with the owners. They also began to identify other sites they believed would be exceptional for cold-climate viticulture and approached the land owners about developing small vineyards collaboratively.

Today, SCV works closely with this small group of ambitious (some call them crazy) growers in partnership efforts, including Jack and Kathy Balistreri of Balistrieri Family Vineyards, Will and Diane Petersen of Petersen Vineyard among others.

Read detailed descriptions of our coastal vineyards

555 Highway 1, Bodega Bay, CA 94923 | (707) 921-2860
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