Purchase of first Dry Creek parcel: the Hartsock Ranch, prunes and pears with a few acres of grapes.
Lou & Susan’s first date. Susan showed up barefoot.
Planting of new vineyards begins. Sauvignon Blanc was the first new grape, inspired by Lou’s friend Dave Stare, of Dry Creek Vineyards.
Lou & Susan marry in Calaveritas, Susan’s childhood home.
First winery is established in the historic prune dehydrator on the Hartsock Ranch. Everything was improvised.
Fortuitious confusion between PS and SY led to first planting of Rhone varietal: Syrah.
Experimentation with alternative varietals such as Gamay, Muscat and Chenin Blanc.
Preston’s “Cuvee de Fume” wins 5 gold medals in major competitions.
Wine production peaks at 30,000 cases. New tasting room and commercial kitchen added to winery.
“Suitcase” importation of grafting wood for Italian oil-olive trees.
Lou’s hobby bread baking leads to a home-made adobe, wood-fired oven.
Preston joins Healdsburg Farmers Market, as vendors of bread and vegetables.
Preston Vineyards is re-envisioned as Preston of Dry Creek and downsizes to 8,000.
Introduction of new signature blends: L.Preston and Madam Preston
Preston introduces jug wine honoring local old-timer Jim Guadagni, still available every Sunday in the cellar.
Lou & Susan attend their first EcoFarm conference.
Lou begins conversion of tractors and personal vehicles to run on waste vegetable oil.
Began riparian restoration of creek frontage, designed by Evan Engber of Bioengineering.
First plantings of grain for estate loaves.
Serious crop diversification begins, replacing some vineyard blocks damaged by winter freeze.
First flock of Katahdin sheep introduced as a component of holistic farm management, followed by chickens and pigs.
Introduction of first sulfite-free Organic Syrah.
Biodynamic certification by Demeter USA
First hard apple cider produced using estate apples.