In 2004, longtime wine industry friends Adam Webb and Mike Kuenz, made their first handshake deal to buy grapes from two rows in an Old Vine Grenache vineyard in Amador County, and so began their winemaking odyssey.
We started Odisea and Cochon Wines to produce wines from varietals that we are truly passionate about. We took our inspiration from wines we love from the south of France and the Iberian Peninsula. Our goal is to make wines in small lots from unique vineyard sites around California and let the fruit and the vineyard speak for themselves.
The focus was originally on making Spanish styled wines from the best California Spanish varietal vineyards they could find. Adam found some amazing Albarino, Tempranillo, Verdejo, Graciano and Garnacha along the way from growers that shared their passion for Rhone varietals and had taken the chance,on these lesser known grapes.
The initial trials with Rhone grape varieties led Adam to experimenting with larger French oak barrels more typical of the Rhone than California. In particular, the large unique shaped Hogshead barrels, nicknamed Hogs showed particularly positive results with Syrah, where we found they yielded rounder, softer textured and more elegant wines. The result is this collection of small production California Rhone wines raised exclusively in French oak Hogsheads... named "Cochon," the loving French word for Hog.