Carlisle Winery

Sonoma Valley
Sub region:
Sonoma County
Year founded:
Mike Officer, Kendall Officer
Mike Officer, Jay Maddox

Basic Info

Carlisle is a small Sonoma County winery specializing in the production of old-vine, vineyard designated Zinfandels and red Rhone varieties. After college graduation, Mike Officer settled into a software development career. But after five years of sitting in front of a monitor, he realized he wanted to do something that would involve wine, but in what capacity? He started with 5 gallons of Zinfandel in his kitchen. Over the next several years, he made a barrel of Zinfandel each vintage and the results were encouraging. Mike soon found himself increasingly drawn to the old-vine vineyards of Sonoma County. There was something special, even magical, about those ancient, twisted vines. By 1997 they were producing over 300 cases of “garage” wine, mostly different vineyard designated old-vine Zinfandels, and winning numerous gold medals in amateur competitions. Hence, it was with their meager savings and some family support that Mike & Kendall launched Carlisle Winery & Vineyards in 1998, seeking out Zinfandel from some of the finest vineyards in the county, planted between 1885 and 1934. Using vacation from his “real” job in San Francisco, Mike produced 650 cases in our first vintage, 1998. The wines were immediately snapped up by eager mailing list customers and that’s how the vast majority are sold today. In the spring of 2015, Thirst was finally able to convince Mike to sell a few cases to Oklahoma; hence, we are thrilled to offer these wines to you. Cheers!