Thursday, August 18, 2022

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Broc Cellars Chris Brockway Berkeley California

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Broc La Boutache: Californias identity as a table wine, for us, begins with Zinfandel. This release starts with Zinfandel as its base. Its a fresh, vibrant grape when picked early and plays well with food pairings. The Carignan in the blend adds the depth to the wine, and the Lagrein Rosé adds the lifting acid, softening the tannins for a nice year-round drinking red. Zinfandel and Carignan grapes were made whole cluster and the Lagrein went direct to press. The wine was aged in a mix of concrete and neutral French oak barrels. Blended together to give you a wine that everyone should enjoy at the table.Le Clairet – The Perfect Red: 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé. 90% of the Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were destemmed and the remaining we left whole cluster to line the bottom of the tank. Fermented with native yeast and no S02 and pressed early to lessen the amount of tannins in the wine. For this years release we made rosé from the same Cabernet vines from Wirth Ranch to add to the wine, making more of a lighter clairet style. The grapes for the rosé were foot stomped and left on the skins for 24 hours, then pressed into stainless tank.

Broc Cellars 2019 Love Red

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The beautifully fresh and ripe black-cherry and raspberry aromas of this natural-style, light-bodied wine are backed by an earthy touch in the flavors, which are nicely braced by slightly tangy acidity. The wine is outright fruity and gulpable. Jim Gordon

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All tastings reported in the Buying Guide are performed blind. Typically, products are tasted in peer-group flights of from 5-8 samples. Reviewers may know general information about a flight to provide contextvintage, variety or appellationbut never the producer or retail price of any given selection. When possible, products considered flawed or uncustomary are retasted.

Ratings reflect what our editors felt about a particular product. Beyond the rating, we encourage you to read the accompanying tasting note to learn about a products special characteristics.

Chris Brockway Of Broc Cellars

Winemaker Chris Brockway punches down a bin full of carignan grapes. Broc Cellars is one of the few wineries that bottles carignan as a varietal. Photo by Sara Kraus.

Chris Brockway represents a new breed of winemaker helping to change Californias palate.

If youve read even just a few of my articles in these pages, it would be entirely reasonable to conclude that this California native has a bias against California wines. Ive made unfavorable analogies between the Napa Valley and places such as Las Vegas and Disneyland. Places, to borrow a phrase from John Lennon, where nothing is real. Ive climbed on soapboxes to denounce the predominance of jammy, high alcohol, overly oaked, chemical- and machine-manipulated wines that, to me, taste like bubble gum followed by a vodka chaser. And you know what? Im not stopping now.

And yes, I do have a biasto put it more positively toward wines of restraint, low alcohol, bright acidity and minerality: terroir-driven wines that are organically raised in the vineyard and, while being carefully nurtured, are at the same time relatively un-manipulated in the cellar. I like harmonious wines that go well with food.

Of wines and trends

Of course many veteran winemakersincluding some that have been written about here and some that havent, such as Steve Edmunds of Edmunds Saint-Johnnever subscribed to the Vegas showgirl approach to vinification, and were producing naturally made wines before there was any such category, or trend.

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Broc Cellars Love White

Region: Madera, California, United StatesViticulture: OrganicGrape varieties: 38% Marsanne, 24% Picpoul, 22% Rousanne, 16% Grenache Blanc

Broc Cellars Love White is a blend of organic Marsanne, Picpoul, Roussanne, and Grenache Blanc from a single vineyard. All varieties were fermented separately then aged in neutral French oak barrels for 8 months with no sulphur.

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Broc Cellars Love White is a blend of organic Marsanne, Picpoul, Roussanne, and Grenache Blanc from a single vineyard. All varieties were fermented separately then aged in neutral French oak barrels for 8 months with no sulphur. Malolactic fermentation was allowed to happen naturally. Last year we added Picpoul to the Love White blend adding more brightness. For this 2019 vintage, we added even more. The Picpoul grapes come from vines that we grafted onto Roussanne vines at Love Ranch a few years ago. The cuttings came from Rorick Vineyard. This wine is unfiltered and will contain some sediment.

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410 N. ANDREWS, FORT LAUDERDALE FL, 33301 | 954-999-0127 | CONTACT

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Chris Brockway Winemaker + Owner

Broc Cellars  Love Red  Red California Natural Wine ...

The Broc Cellars story begins with a move from Nebraska to California. Chris Brockway grew up in Omaha and felt drawn to wine. Specifically spicy, brambly Zinfandels from California, and took a leap to move out West. He received an oenology degree from Fresno State and began making his first wine in 2002 it was just one barrel. The following year he made three barrels, and by 2004 had 14 barrels of wine to call his own. Broc Cellars was born and had its first official release in 2006. At the time, the mentality surrounding California wines was bigger is better. Chris personally felt the wines to be too big, too much alcohol, too much everything. He set out to do something else. In 2008 he moved to his first winery space in Berkeley, which was originally known as Grape Leaf Cellars, located only one block away from where we are now. This is where Broc found its way.

In 2009, Chris made his first vintage of Carignan using carbonic maceration and it was also the first year he experimented with skin contact whites, making a Rousanne. Another wine that paved the way for Broc early on was the whole cluster Cabernet Franc, now known as KouKou. In 2010 Chris began working with Cabernet Franc from Happy Canyon in Santa Barbara and made it using whole cluster fermentation. The wines made in 2009 and 2010 were unlike most wines being made in California at the time and were building blocks for how Broc wines are made today.

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Broc Cellars Love Red Blend 2018 California

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White and Rose Wines

Another natural wine at Majestic and this one is a real gem. Made by the innovative Californian Broc Cellars, this is a unique blend of Carignan, Valdiguié and Petite Sirah. Made with little to no sulphites, and nothing else added, it’s fruit-driven with bags of crunchy redcurrant fruit and hints of anise. Broc Cellars call it a ‘Californian Cru Beaujolais’ and it’ll certainly delight chilled on a warm day.

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Strawberry, Black Fruit, Blackberry, Earth, Red Cherry, Red Fruit, Spice
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White and Rose Wines

Broc Cellars Love Ros

Region: Mendocino and Solano Counties, California, United StatesViticulture: OrganicGrape varieties:80% Valdiguié, 14% Zinfandel, 6% Trousseau

Broc Cellars Love Rosé is a blend of organic Valdiguié, Zinfandel, and Trousseau. All three varieties fermented together for just over 30 days. The spice comes from the Zinfandel, acidity from the Valdiguié, and texture from the Trousseau.

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Broc Cellars Love Rosé is a blend of organic Valdiguié, Zinfandel, and Trousseau. All three varieties fermented together for just over 30 days. The spice comes from the Zinfandel, acidity from the Valdiguié, and texture from the Trousseau.

From the Winery: At Broc Cellars, all of our wines are made using spontaneous fermentation, a process that means we only use native yeasts and bacteria that exist on the grapes in order to make wine. This is unlike many of the wines you will see in grocery stores or on wine shop shelves and in restaurants. We dont add anything this includes nutrients, yeast, bacteria, enzymes, tannins, or other popular fermentation agents. Sulphur is a naturally occurring element in all wine, the amount found can vary. We add little to no S02, depending on the wine and style.

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410 N. ANDREWS, FORT LAUDERDALE FL, 33301 | 954-999-0127 | CONTACT

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Wine For The Here & Now: Berkeleys Broc Cellars

Industrial Berkeley is the last place youd expect to find a winery, but Broc Cellars has made this factory-filled region its home for the past eight years. Broc Cellars occupies what was once an ink plant, from which owner and winemaker Chris Brockway produces about 10,000 cases annually of organic red and white varietals and blends that are widely distributed throughout the Bay Area and the United States. Known for his creativity and restraint in making approachable wines in a natural way, Brockway has amassed a loyal following of fans who appreciate the immediacy and food friendliness of his wines.

A long time East Bay resident, Brockway, a philosophy major at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, began making wine in the early 2000s for other wineries. In 2005 he struck out on his own with a desire to create simple, drink-now, food-friendly wine that partnered well with the exceptional produce and ingredients available throughout the Bay Area. Restaurateurs took immediate notice and acknowleded the versatility of Broc Cellars varietals, as evidenced by the vast number of East Bay restaurants that feature the brand within their wine lists.

In addition to the delicious wines, Broc Cellars labels are reason enough to purchase and display these bottles. Works of art each, the whimsical labels are designed by Brockways friend, Berkeley artist , who works hand-in-hand with Brockway in creating the Broc aesthetic.

As A Member Of Our Club You Truly Are A Part Of Broc

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We love making unique, small production, wine naturally and couldnt do it without our club members.

The club includes three shipments per year of BROC new releases one in the early Spring, early Summer and one in the Fall. Being a part of the club means you get access to very limited production wines first including exclusive releases that dont make it online or in stores.

Your membership also includes:

> 15% discount on all wine, plus an additional 5% off for tasting room/Broc Door case purchases. Some exclusions apply when ordering wine to be shipped.

> VIP Event Access

> One ticket for our annual summer blockbuster BROCTACULAR! The best wine party in town, featuring food and wine pairings, live band, special discounts on wine, and more!

The price for each club release allocation is based on the wines included.

We require a commitment to receive at least THREE CONSECUTIVE SHIPMENTS in order to be a part of the Broc Wine Club.

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Fruit Of The Bartered Vine

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By Eric Asimov

    BERKELEY, Calif. Broc Cellars fits hardly anybodys idea of a California winery. You wont see any cellars, for one thing, or anything remotely pastoral, like a vineyard. The cellars are a warehouse, on a corner in an industrial district here in Berkeley. Across one street is a cement plant. Across another is a motorcycle-repair shop. The melody of passing freight trains plays every once in a while.

    But despite the asphalt vista, Broc, in business less than a decade, produces some of the most invigorating, interesting wines in California today. Some are from familiar grapes: zinfandel, grenache and cabernet franc. Others seem tauntingly obscure: picpoul, valdigué and counoise. Each demonstrates that California, better known for wines of power and amplitude, can also do fresh, thirst-quenching and intriguing exceedingly well.

    Broc is a tiny operation. The proprietor, Chris Brockway, works with one assistant, Sam Baron, and gets occasional help from his girlfriend, Bridget Leary .

    But even on this small scale, Broc offers a glimpse into one possible future for the California wine industry, a future that depends on vision, hustle and entrepreneurship rather than, as in Napa Valley, inheritance or making a fortune in another business to finance wine ventures. Its a vision that may seem cutting edge but in fact is a throwback to Californias past, both stylistically in terms of Brocs wines and financially, in terms of its shoestring budget.

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