The Craft of Winemaking
While honoring traditional winemaking methods, veteran winemaker Kevin Willenborg implements modern technologies to make our estate wines with minimal intervention.
Kevin is known for his attention to detail and for working with the vines so that they express their true potential. Together with our vineyard team, he employs sustainable techniques to achieve the highest quality possible.
"Each wine has its own life. That life begins with the planting and development of the vines. It is then transferred from the earth through the vine as the grapes are harvested, crushed, fermented into wine and eventually bottled. The role of the winemaker is to respectfully steward this life with care and attention to detail."
Kevin's goal is to grow wines that completely translate the Paso Robles terroir into the bottle and let the true fruit qualities shine through in the wine. He uses traditional methods and modern technology to nurture the full expression of the grapes. Furthermore, barrels are carefully selected from cooperages that are known for subtlety, and only low and medium toast levels are employed.
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We are proud to say that 2018 was the first vintage crushed, made and bottled here at our state-of-the-art winery.
A Note from Winemaker Kevin Willenborg
We broke ground and started construction of our winery at our Huerhuero Vineyard in the spring of 2017. It was a fitting milestone to mark our 20th anniversary, and will no doubt be the foundation of our next 20 years in Paso Robles. It was a long time coming, but we discovered that the upside to waiting so long was the ability to take advantage of latest cutting-edge technologies that will help us make even better wines for the future.
The state-of-the-art equipment we have installed has not only enhanced wine quality, it has elevated our energy efficiency. Some of this equipment would have been unthinkable just 5 or 10 years ago, and a lot of it mirrors the mindset behind our sustainable vineyard practices. For example, the winery is partially powered by a solar array, and innovative logic controllers greatly reduce energy consumption. The winery actually uses less energy while generating its own power, ultimately minimizing its carbon footprint.
One thing I now can't imagine living without is our optical grape sorter, one of just a few in Paso. When our fruit is harvested and destemmed, each grape is sent through the optical sorter, which discards any compromised fruit with remarkable speed and accuracy. This literally gives me the 'best of the bunch' to make wine from. Not to worry, we don't rely wholly on technology. I'm still physically checking each tank every day throughout harvest. The synergy between tradition and technology is incredible.
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Meet the Team
Family-owned, Vina Robles is progressing to second-generation generation ownership with Founder Hans Nef’s two daughters: Michèle König-Nef and Nicole Nüesch-Nef, at the helm. Their vision cannot be accomplished without the dedicated team of industry professionals striving towards the same core values or sustainability, hospitality and quality.
Vina Robles’ Story
Vina Robles is the result of a unique personal trajectory, one that led founder Hans Nef from a rural village outside Zurich, Switzerland to the rugged terrain of California's Central Coast
The Vina Robles vineyard team takes care of our vineyards, while Winemaker Kevin Willenborg selects only the finest blocks from each site for the production of VinaRobles wines.
Discover Our Wines
Our sustainably farmed, estate vineyards are showcased in each bottle of wine.