There must be something in the water. As a farmer, the North Fork of the Gunnison river is a lifeline and the greatest source of water that connects our agriculture community. Yet, there is something more than that.
It could be the freshness granted to first-users of the alpine snowmelt, the peacefulness found along its banks, or gratitude for the bounty it provides.
Whatever it may be, it has bound together those who have the grit to settle and support themselves in our valley.
For the Justman family, this valley represents the fruition of my father’s life dream. Inspired by fleeting experiences on his grandparents’ peach farm and after searching all over the country for the right place, he was pulled to Paonia and the North Fork Valley. In 2004, he planted the first plot of Pinot Noir on our farm.
Just as my father had ended his lifelong search, his antique dump truck sputtered to its final stop alongside the rows of vines; a fitting place to spend the rest of its days. We feature this truck on our logo to pay homage to how lucky we feel for having been pulled to Peony Lane and to have set roots in such a perfect place.
As winemakers, our belief is simple: growing in an environment that produces the highest quality fruit results in the highest quality wine. Our grapes are some of those grown closest to the sun. With a deep connection to the water table, we farm without irrigation and embrace natural and sustainable growing practices without pesticides or herbicides. We humbly accept our role as stewards and look to produce wine that fully expresses the natural complexity of our world.
It is just you and the grapes, skin to skin.