Newsletter July 2008

Doing good by drinking well

As spring edges toward summer, everything is going green here in wine country—both literally and figuratively. Like you, all of us here at PATZ & HALL have been thinking more and more about the environment in recent years. As vintners, what we do is so intimately tied to the natural world that there is an extra impetus for us to be good environmental citizens. Not only is it the right thing to do—it just makes sense. With this in mind, we’ve been working hard to make our winery as green as possible. It’s been an interesting process. As you take a good look at the mark your business leaves on the environment, you realize that real change comes from a combination of both small and big initiatives.

The little things we do—like shredding and recycling paper and using the most energy-efficient lighting—aren’t very glamorous, but they make a difference. We’ve also taken a close look at how we package our wines, which has led to some significant changes. We now use lighter bottles (which greatly reduces the energy required for shipping), we cap them with recyclable tin capsules, and we’ve switched our case box packaging to standard cardboard, which eliminates all dyes and converts inks to soy-based materials. On a bigger scale, we make compost out of all the left over organic matter from our winemaking (skins, seeds, etc.) in partnership with a local farm. We also pre-treat all of the wastewater from our winemaking, essentially making our wastewater similar to storm water. Currently, we are working on our biggest green project to date: we are going solar. This summer we will be installing a roof-mounted solar array that will produce enough energy to make our winery completely energy sufficient. It will also spare the environment over 128,000 pounds of CO2 emissions annually, which we think is pretty cool. Bottom line, it all adds up, and it has made our team feel even better about our winery and our wines. As someone who supports PATZ & HALL, we hope you feel the same.

Enjoy your wines—knowing that you’re doing good by drinking well!