TIN BARN VINEYARDS, Sonoma
Tin Barn was founded in 2000 by Toronto native Mike Lancaster. After working briefly in Niagara, Mike studied Enology & Viticulture at UC Davis from 1993-95. During this time, he worked as an intern in the cellar, vineyard and lab at Gloria Ferrer in Sonoma. Over the next 5 years, he progressed from Cellar Master to Assistant Winemaker to Head Winemaker at Quail Ridge in Napa.
Tin Barn’s first vintages were made in a leased space. An efficient, custom-designed winery, located on the outskirts of the town of Sonoma, bordering the Carneros appellation, was completed in 2005, providing an ideal facility for small-lot winemaking. Some pretty high-profile wineries, including Patz & Hall, Three Sticks and Bedrock Wine Co are all in the same complex. Single-vineyard wines — including Sauvignon Blanc, 2 Zinfandels, a Pinot Noir, and a stunning Syrah (from a vineyard on Tin Barn Road on the Sonoma Coast) follow the winemaker’s philosophy for expressing the local character of Sonoma and Carneros sites. Only the Cab combines the fruit of two exceptional vineyards: Pickberry on Sonoma Mountain and Arrowhead in Sonoma Valley. Total annual production is about 5,000 cases.
And while Mike is Tin Barn’s Managing Partner & Winemaker, he is also in-demand as a consulting winemaker. The design of the winery allows him to ‘custom crush’ for a handful of premium brands — you’d be surprised to learn some of the ‘cult wines’ made here under Mike’s respected mentorship. Tin Barn also created the ‘R8 Wine Co.’ negociant brand, providing outstanding wines designed for restaurants at approachable prices.