Alex Krause and John Locke founded Birichino in Santa Cruz in 2008. Drawing on a combined four decades making wine in California, France, Italy, and beyond, they are focused on attaining the perfect balance of perfume, poise, and puckishness. Sourcing from a number of carefully farmed, family-owned, own-rooted 19th and early 20th century vineyards (and a few from the late disco era) planted by and large in more moderate, marine-influenced climates, their preoccupation is to safeguard the quality and vibrance of their raw materials. Their preference is for minimal intervention, most often favoring native fermentations, employing stainless or neutral barrels, minimal racking and fining, and avoiding filtration altogether when possible. But most critically, their aim is to make delicious wines that give pleasure, revitalize, and revive.
Scylla wraps its silky yet toothsome, urbane yet rustic charms around its chosen fare without drawing it into the abyss. Prismatically perfumed, yet gently firm, it lifts us up, and invites another glass. Like the carignane at its core, with its beastly reputation for high acidity, high tannin, and high yield like some six-headed, man-eating, 300-foot long red sea serpent, when mellowed and moderated after a century, its underlying Birichino nature is revealed in a bright, pulsing whirlpool of refreshment and red fruits.