I’ll Drink to That: Martha Stoumen of The Living Wines Collective

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Episode 330 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently. It features Martha Stoumen of The Living Wines Collective in California.

Martha Stoumen is one of a handful of winermakers working in a winery arranged along cooperative lines in California, with each member contributing resources to the project, both in terms of working time and funds. Theirs is a small operation today, but it offers a glimpse of a different winery model for California, a state that is often arranged as an every-label-for-itself world. But it isn’t just in the winery that what Martha and her friends are up to is different than others, it is also in their desire to work in both the farming and in the winemaking. Many times these duties are divvied up separately in California, but this operation tries for both. In a short time it has already been quite the adventure, but also perhaps easier than one might expect. Martha opens up about that, and also about all the influences that got her to this point. She describes her past experiences making wine for another California winery, she explains what a trip to Sicily for a harvest at COS ended up meaning for her career, and she articulates the practices of a notable producer on the Mosel, whom she also worked with. It is pretty fascinating to follow along with the realizations as they stem from the practice, and to grasp the follow through on Martha’s part as she tries to put those convictions into practice. If you are curious about where in the future California winemakers might be headed, listen in on episode 330.

Listen to the stream above, or check it out in iTunes.

I’ll Drink to That is the world’s most listened-to wine podcast, hosted by Levi Dalton. Levi has had a long career working as a sommelier in some of the most distinguished and acclaimed dining rooms in America. He has served wine to guests of Restaurant Daniel, Masa, and Alto, all in Manhattan. Levi has also contributed articles on wine themes to publications such as The Art of Eating, Wine & Spirits magazine, Bon Appetit online, and Eater NY. Check out his pictures on Instagram and follow him on Twitter: @levi_opens_wine