Rootdown Wine Cellars

Rootdown was started by winemaker/owner Mike Lucia in 2014 initially as a rose-focused brand but has since grown to produce rose, white, and red. Mike got his start in wine at a very early age growing up in Healdsburg in Sonoma. After working for producers such as Ridge and earning a viticulture degree from Fresno State, Mike became the assistant winemaker at Copain in 2010. He oversaw the Tous Ensemble program and oversaw most aspects of day to day winemaking. Upon Copain’s sale to Kendall Jackson, Mike is now able to fully focus on Rootdown. Considered one of the most talented young winemakers in California, Rootdown is a label to watch.
"So how you gonna kick it? Gonna kick it rootdown." - Mike D.

Wines

Chenin Blanc Heringer Vineyard Clarksburg

Varietal: Chenin Blanc

Color: White

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. Planted in 1997 by the Heringer Family, this vineyard runs alongside the Delta in Clarksburg. The Sycamore soil series is a member of the fine-silty clay family; that is, mostly clay up top, then loam, followed by fine sandy calcareous soil in the root zone. After the fruit came in, the whole clusters were transferred to bins and filled with CO2 and allowed to marinate for 5 days until carbonic fermentation began to set in. Next, the whole clusters were pressed off for a whole press cycle. The wine settled in tank before transferring to barrel for a native yeast fermentation. 180 cs produced.

Es Okay Pinot Gris Mendocino

Varietal: Pinot Gris

Color: White

Farming Practice: Sustainable

Sustainable. 100% Pinot Grigio. A second label of Rootdown Wine Cellar by Mike Lucia to produce affordable new varietal wines. The fun naming idea came from a casual conversation how he uses “it’s okay” constantly. It then tuned into Es Okay, with humorous label and fun lines. The idea is to keep this wine light and fresh. Hand harvested. 80% of the grape went straight to press and cold settled for 3 days then transferred to tank. It went through fermentation in tank and racked off to another tank and cold settled until bottling. 20% of the fruit was foot treaded and naturally fermented on skin for 5 days, then pressed off and finished fermentation in neutral oak. 80% of the wine aged in tank and 20% aged in neutral barrels for 6 months. 880 cases produced.

Es Okay Red Wine (Touriga Blend) Mendocino

Varietal: Touriga National, Tinta Cao, Tinta Ruiz, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Francisca

Color: Red

Farming Practice: Sustainable

Sustainable. 32% Touriga National, 17% Tinta Cao, 17% Tinta Ruiz, 17% Tinta Barroca, 17% Tinta Francisca. A second label of Rootdown Wine Cellar by Mike Lucia to produce affordable new varietal wines. The fun naming idea came from a casual conversation how he uses “it’s okay” constantly. It then tuned into Es Okay, with humorous label and fun lines. The idea is to keep this wine light and fresh. The red is a blend of 5 Portuguese varieties. Each variety was fermented separately with native yeast. Wine was punched down two times a day and pressed around 5-10 brix. Touriga National was partially fermented whole cluster (roughly 25% of the wine). The wine finished fermentation in tank and then barrels where it finished secondary. Aged in neutral barrels for 6 months. 540 cases produced.

Grenache Blanc ‘Redwood Glen’

Varietal: Grenache

Color: White

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 100% Grenache Blanc. The vineyard, Redwood Glenn, sits on fine silty loam and is located on the border between Dry Creek Valley and Russian River Valley just outside of Healdsburg. After picking the fruit, Mike foot-treads it and lets it sit for 6 hours on the skins. The fruit is then pressed, settled, and racked to neutral oak for fermentation. A quarter of the way through, the wine is racked back to stainless steel to get homogenous, then back to oak to finish fermentation. Post fermentation the wine stays in oak for another 4 monts before going to steel until bottling. This aids in keeping the wine in a state of reduction. Bottled with no additions beyond SO2. 100 cs produced

Mourvèdre ‘Dry Bone Ranch’

Varietal: Mourvèdre

Color: Red

Farming Practice

Sourced from Dry Bone Ranch Vineyard in Amador which sits at an elevation of 2700 ft. Soil- Josephin series which consists of deep, well drained soils that formed in colluvium and residuum weathered from altered sedimentary and extrusive igneous rocks. Harvested the same day as the Mourvedre rosé from 2 bins of what Mike determined as the riper, softer fruit. Destemmed but kept as whole berries. The idea behind this wine is to be fresh, full of energy and not extracted. To achieve this, there were no pumpovers or punchdowns. Instead, he simply wet the cap by pitcher and let the ferment ride out naturally. Because this is a spontaneous fermentation, (and in order to keep the native yeasts healthy) he fully drained the tank halfway through fermentation, gave it a bunch of oxygen and pumped it back into the ferment to finish. Keeping the style in mind, he pressed early and let it finish off in tank and then aged it in neutral barrels for only 7 months. 40 cs produced.

Mourvèdre Rose

Varietal: Mourvèdre

Color: Rose

Farming Practice

100% Mourvedre. Sourced from Dry Bone Ranch Vineyard in Amador which sits at an elevation of 2700 ft. Soil- Josephin series which consists of deep, well drained soils that formed in colluvium and residuum weathered from altered sedimentary and extrusive igneous rocks. Direct-pressed and settled. Spontaneous fermentation starts in steel and then goes to neutral oak to finish. Bottled with very low SO2 (<10 ppm free SO2) and no other additions.

Pinot Blanc Rivin Ranch Mendocino

Varietal: Pinot Blanc

Color: White

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. Planted in 1995, Rivin Ranch Vineyard (née Shrader Ranch) borders the Russian River on the south end of Ukiah in Mendocino County. Its Russian series soil is deep and well-drained, formed in alluvium from sedimentary rock. Once this Pinot Blanc hit the winery, it went direct to the press in order to maintain its natural freshness. The juice was cold-settled overnight and then two-thirds of it was racked into neutral barrel and the rest into stainless steel with native yeast. After fermentation, it is racked into stainless to rest until bottling in April. 180 cs produced.

Sangiovese ‘Jane’s Vineyard’

Varietal: Sangiovese

Color: Red

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 100% Sangiovese. Sourced from Janes Vineyard in Mendocino County. Soil: Talmage series which consists of very deep, somewhat excessively drained soils formed in alluvium from mixed sources. Harvested the same day as the Mourvedre rosé from 2 bins of what Mike determined as the riper, softer fruit. Destemmed but kept as whole berries. The idea behind this wine is to be fresh, full of energy and not extracted. To achieve this, there were no pumpovers or punchdowns. Instead, he simply wet the cap by pitcher and let the ferment ride out naturally. Because this is a spontaneous fermentation, (and in order to keep the native yeasts healthy) he fully drained the tank halfway through fermentation, gave it a bunch of oxygen and pumped it back into the ferment to finish. Keeping the style in mind, he pressed early and let it finish off in tank and then aged it in neutral barrels for only 7 months. 48 cs produced.

Sangiovese Rose

Varietal: Sangiovese

Color: Rose

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 100% Sangiovese. Sourced from Janes Vineyard in Mendocino County. Soil: Talmage series which consists of very deep, somewhat excessively drained soils formed in alluvium from mixed sources. Direct-pressed and settled. Spontaneous fermentation starts in steel and then goes to neutral oak to finish. Bottled with very low SO2 (<10 ppm free SO2) and no other additions.

Trousseau ‘St. Amant Vineyard’

Varietal: Trousseau

Color: Red

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. Sourced from organically farmed St. Amant Vineyard in Amador County. Soil- The Honcut series consists of very deep, well drained soils that formed in moderately coarse textured alluvium from basic igneous and granitic rocks. Picked one week after the grapes for rosé were picked. Mike was inspired by a Tissot wine where he did whole cluster in stainless with a locked top and let the pressure of the ferment expel the liquid to another container making it a true carbonic. Mike fermented the Trousseau in a small egg shaped tank and had a hose hooked up to the bottom valve and a keg hooked up on the other end. After filling the tank, he loaded it up with Co2 and let it start naturally. After 6 weeks in the egg, he combined the two and basket pressed the must into neutral oak for where it fermented and aged for 7 months. 23 cs produced.

Trousseau Rose

Varietal: Trousseau

Color: Rose

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 100% Trousseau. Sourced from organically farmed St. Amant Vineyard in Amador County. Soil- The Honcut series consists of very deep, well drained soils that formed in moderately coarse textured alluvium from basic igneous and granitic rocks. Foot-tread, cold-soaked for 24 hours, pressed, and settled. Spontaneous fermentation starts in steel and then goes to neutral oak to finish. Bottled with very low SO2 (<10 ppm free SO2) and no other additions.

Press