Winemaker, Organic Wines, Homegrown Traveler
Driving change in the wine industry is in Justin Weibel’s blood. His family’s winery, Weibel Vineyards, helped revitalize the quality of wine in America after Prohibition. Today, he continues in that spirit with his dedication to making organic wines. “Creating sustainable and organic wines is crucial,” Weibel observes. “This is our opportunity to ensure the health and growth for future generations.” Justin grew up in the vineyards and is fourth generation winemaker. His family emigrated from Switzerland in the 1930s and Justin’s grandfather and great grandfather made sparkling wine in the basement of San Francisco’s William Tell Hotel. Later, they established their family winery in the Central Valley, where Justin served as head Winemaker for several years. With an itch to travel, he took to the road as a winemaking consultant, spending several years in Turkey and at Iowa State University. He joined WX in 2013 to spearhead the organic wines. With his deep knowledge of winemaking and winegrowing, he has made a huge contribution to the team.
Paso Robles, United States - United States
A rising star in California's wine scene, Paso Robles is producing stellar wines while also holding strong to its Wild West roots. With a laid-back attitude, innovative spirit and maverick ways, Paso winemakers are capitalizing on the bounty of sunshine and diversity of soils to produce exciting wines. It is an extremely large and diverse region bordered by the Santa Lucia Mountains running the length of its western side. The area has over 45 different soils, including granite, sedimentary, volcanic and sandstone. Most notable however are the calcareous soils, which carry higher pH levels that naturally reduce vine vigor. Ideal for this warm climate, these soils control the ripening process and allow the fruit to retain its natural acidity. Large diurnal shifts also help balance the grapes. At night, temperatures can drop almost 40 degrees which arrests sugar development, slows maturation and extends hang time on the vine for complex flavor development.