|David Page and Barbara Shinn (photo provided)|
Shinn Estate Vineyards brought sustainable winemaking to the mainstream. So, why did its owners just sell it?Go here for the full story.
Since its first wines were released in 2002, Shinn Estate Vineyards on Long Island’s North Fork has been a force in the region. Until the winery arrived on the scene, the Long Island wine industry hadn’t been shaken up much since the early 1970s when it started. Although there were dozens of vineyards, they were mainly a destination for weekend day-trippers. The wines were sold locally, and in some cases, in New York City. But with the arrival of Barbara Shinn and her husband David Page, all that changed.
The couple had spent years in the hotly competitive New York restaurant business, most notably as the owners of Home, a successful West Village spot where they got out ahead of the comfort-food craze. They arrived on the North Fork with a farm-to-table sensibility, a talent for marketing, and a desire to push Long Island wine production in a new direction.
That direction was toward sustainable farming and a rejection of the longstanding belief that chemicals were the only way to control pests, mold, and mildew in a humid, maritime climate. But it wasn’t easy going. Many in the industry dismissed their point of view as impossible — crazy talk by a couple of arrivistes in a region that had already been producing wine for almost three decades.
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