- Sierra Foothills, California, United States
Wines taste alive when they come from vines surrounded by life, terroir that speaks loudly and winemaking that doesn’t get in the way.” - La Onda
La Onda is a project dedicated to making living wines of distinctive character. Though it literally translates to “the wave”, La Onda is also slang for “the vibe”, and Dani’s wines are all about capturing this sense, the essence of a time and place. Using low-intervention methods, native fermentations, neutral oak, and minimal sulfur, he does nothing that could obscure the terroir.
Dani currently farms four acres of own-rooted vines in the Sierra Foothills, split between two slopes at 1,900 and 2,500 ft elevation. The vineyards are wild, a true collection of vines, granite, red clay, insects, bees, herbs, flowers, berries, thistles and hungry animals. The farming is chemical free, without irrigation, without tillage and demands tons of work by hand and hand tools. The grapes are harvested by making several passes through the same vineyard sections over the course of weeks, slowly building fermentations with ripe grapes.
A few wines are produced from these vineyards and an additional four from other organic and/or biodynamic vineyards farmed by friends. The winemaking is very simple: all the wines are either foot-stomped and left to ferment, foot-stomped then pressed or immediately pressed whole-cluster. There is no de-stemming, no additives and juice/wine is almost always moved by gravity flow rather than by pump. Wines are left to age in barrel for as long as they need and then bottled unfined/unfiltered before further bottle aging.