Sep 18, 2018 7:00 AM
Dave King from Vista Del Rey Vineyards
The History of Zinfandel

Vista Del Rey marks 21 years of steadfast dry farmed wine

–Just up San Marcos Road, not on the typical wine trail, on a hillside with a serene view of the Santa Lucia Range, 74-year-old grandfather, local farming purist, and owner of Vista Del Rey Vineyards can be found working the silty clay loam soils on his trusty faded orange Kubota tractor.

Dave King purchased the eight-acre vineyard back in 1994. After a full 22-year career in the U.S. Navy and another eight years working as an engineer and program manager, Dave dusted off his Agriculture Engineering degree from Oregon State and took off on his “Walter Mitty” dream of running a small, 1900s-style, sustainably run vineyard. He’s been going ever since.

King’s no-spray, pesticide-free vines are looking well-established, with bright green ‘popcorn’ growing on dark brown shoulders. These are the wines the region has come to know well, producing some of the appellation’s most vibrant Barberas, the bright and spicy flagship “Comida Simpático” Zinfandel, the popular Zin-Bera original blend, and Barbera Port.

Credit: San Luis Obispo's Visitors Guide 2017