Dennis and Diane DeCosta purchased the DeCosta Vineyards Estate in 2006. The DeCosta Family immediately fell in love with the picturesque vineyard landscape, breathtaking sunsets and the allure of simple country living. “The Grape House” is what their youngest daughter, Sammy, called her new home. Nestled amongst vineyards on the outskirts of Lodi, “The Grape House”, was an appropriate name for the estate, which had only a gravel driveway with dirt and vineyards for a yard. A far cry from the Bay Area, from which they moved, Dennis dreamed of having a barnyard full of animals, as he had growing up in the coastal countryside of the Azorean island of Sao Miguel, Portugal.
Soon a barn was built and Dennis wasted no time in filling it with goats, rabbits, chickens, turkeys, pheasants and peacocks, just to name a few. Soon, the whole family was collecting freshly laid eggs, milking dairy goats, and partaking in the daily efforts of keeping up a working farm, even attending to the births of barnyard babies. All were rewarded with soft goat cheese, made by Diane in the traditional Azorean style, and the satisfaction of a hard days work.
The DeCosta Family has worked tirelessly to bring the 30-acre parcel to the splendorous estate that is seen today, rejuvenating the once neglected vineyard. Maintaining sustainable, environmentally responsible farming practices has been paramount since day one. The DeCosta Family Vineyard is Lodi Rules Certified by Protected Harvest. From the installation of bat and owl boxes for pest control, to choosing to grow wild flowers rather than use herbicide in the vineyard, they are committed to preserving the valley that we call home.
Despite being successful businesses owners in other industries, the DeCostas had little experience in the grape growing business. Hard work and perseverance has blossomed into a labor of love. In the true entrepreneurial spirit they set off on an adventure that has culminated in their first vintage, The 2010 Grape House Estate Chardonnay. The name inspired by their youngest Daughter, Sammy.
The property consists of two, humble, 13-acre vineyards situated on the 30-acre DeCosta Estate. The chardonnay vines flourish on the northern perimeter of the property, producing approximately 80 tons per year. They were planted nearly three decades ago on French inspired trellises. The French method promotes optimum sun and air exposure, producing a truly exquisite fruit. The old vine petite sirah vineyard is reportedly, the second oldest petite sirah vineyard in Lodi, CA. At approximately 20 tons per year in harvested fruit, it may have slowed down in old age; however, it is truly a fine vine that gets better with age, producing an intense, robust fruit.
Hot summer days, cool summer evenings and delta breezes make our vines thrive. Less than a mile from the fertile Mokelumne River, our vines enjoy the best growing conditions in Lodi.
From Our Vineyards to Your House… enjoy!