From Rudy Marchesi...
My first time hearing about biodynamic farming came shortly after getting out of college, when a friend of mine shared the experiences he had had at Findhorn in Scotland. He talked about their 20 lb cabbages! I had always been an organic gardener so that really interested me.
I started in the wine business in the late ’70s, and soon thereafter heard about some of the great wines of the world using biodynamics including Burgundy’s Domaine de la Romanee Conti.
As Montinore’s vineyard manager, I started converting our practices to organic in 2001. In 2003, an opportunity came my way to attend a 10 month biodynamic course at the Pfeiffer Center in Chestnut Ridge, NY. From there, I was really intrigued.
At that time, we had some vineyards that weren’t doing well, so we applied some biodynamic practices and tried the sprays with immediate results. We added compost piles, and by 2006, my first full season after buying Montinore, we went with half the farm completely biodynamic. The results again were immediate, so the whole farm was converted in 2007.
I’ve come to see the farm as one living organism, and as stewards of this place, we work to enhance the vitality of that organism, and from there, create vital, balanced, delicious wines from it.