Qupé is a notable Californian Central Coast winemaker known for its handmade Rhône varieties and Chardonnay. Bob Lindquist started it in 1982. The winery's production of its initial Syrah grape variety in the region of Santa Barbara helped Qupé establish its great aesthetic. Qupé produces a variety of wines, Syrahs, and many Rhône white varietals with a focus on the outstanding wines of France's Rhône region. Qupé was regarded as one of the benchmarks for cool climate Syrah and contributed to the development of Santa Barbara County as a premier California wine area. For eight of the previous nine years, Qupé has been ranked among the "Best 100 Wineries in America."
Due to a unique geographical feature that distinguishes Qupé from the majority of other California areas, all vineyards are situated in East-West valleys (instead of North-South valleys), which serve as open windows to the chilly Pacific Ocean. The advantage of the vineyards running East-West along the coast is that the cold, wet air is drawn in, creating a blanket of morning cloud cover that lowers temperatures and limits sunlight exposure on the grapes. Because of this, cool-temperature varieties thrive on the Central Coast's coastal districts, allowing Qupé to concentrate on cool-temperate expressions of Rhone varieties. Also, the many types of loamy soil present in these vineyards help the production of these exquisite wines.
At this winery, everything is done in a way that demonstrates their respect for the land, starting with the manual grape harvesting and continuing through the production of the wine. The grapes for their wines are typically grown organically and on sustainable farms. When it comes to the winemaking process, the winery is located in Arroyo Grande. It employs time-honoured methods, including open-top ferments, entire partial clusters, local yeasts, and hand punch downs. The wine is then stored in French oak barrels, including some fresh wood.
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