Norman Vineyards was started in 1971 when Art and Lei Norman were looking for a place to realize their dream of growing grapes and making wine. Art still recalls what drove him to found Norman – his memories of his father and grandfather making wine in the home when he was a child. Art, an engineer by training and practice, was working in Aerospace in Southern California when his memories of childhood got the best of him, and their search for the proper site began. They spent weekends searching out a site in the cooler coastal climates of California, before settling on their Adelaida site in the as-of-yet undiscovered Westside appellation of Paso Robles.
Shortly after purchasing the winery’s 40 acres, planning for the vineyards commenced. The shallow top soils on the site are underlined by calcareous limestone, providing an environment where grape vines struggle, yet the high water-holding capacity of the soils provides limited moisture to the vines through the long, dry summers. The Normans also chose a very cool site by California viticulture standards, meaning that their grapes would mature more slowly. Chardonnay was chosen for a piece of the vineyard that was perfect for a variety which thrives in such cool climates. However, the majority of the vineyard was reserved for reds – a daring choice that has paid off well.
The grapes from their vineyards have won tremendous acclaim and respect from the many wineries who have purchased from them. Norman Vineyards produces award winning wines from their estate vineyard as well as from select varietals purchased from neighboring vineyards. These wines have intense varietal character and are hand-crafted to preserve the natural fruit characteristics, yet offer a maturity and softness to the palate. Their goal is to produce small lots of moderately priced, exceptional wines.
Norman Vineyard's cultural practices include erosion control, minimum use of pesticides and very little irrigation, resulting in lower crop yields. Today the vineyard includes nearly 40 acres planted to Barbera, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot and Zinfandel.
We are pleased to welcome Jim Norman, son of the winery’s founders, Lei and the late Art Norman. We’re showcasing a selection of stellar Norman wines, and pairing them with an inspired menu from Grovewood’s award-winning kitchen. A complimentary recipe book of the dishes served (but adapted for the home kitchen) will be presented. Register early; this event is sure to be popular!
Full menu details available on the Grovewood website. Click here!