Bob Cabral (photo credit: Steven Freeman)
Bob Cabral has been involved in growing and making wine professionally since 1980 and has had an interest in wine and farming since his childhood helping his grandfather make wine in his barn. Growing up pruning grapes, irrigating vineyards and harvest became routine on his family’s 70 acre ranch near Escalon, CA. A fourth generation farmer and grape grower from the great San Joaquin Valley, he took all he learned at the family farm and applied it to his degrees at Fresno State University.
In the mid 1980’s while working at a large winery south of Fresno, Bob knew that Sonoma County was where he could best hone his skills and learn to make wines that could rival the best made anywhere in the world. He worked the next 33 vintages in various winemaking positions as the Associate Winemaker at De Loach Vineyards, Custom Crush Winemaker at Kunde Estate Winery, Winemaker at Alderbrook Vineyards, Winemaker at Hartford Court Winery, Winemaker/General Manager at Williams Selyem Winery and now Director of Winemaking at Three Sticks Wines. Bob was awarded the 2011 Wine Star Award from the Wine Enthusiast Magazine as Winemaker of the Year.
2020 has him heading into his 41st vintage at a commercial winery, his winemaking philosophy has not changed: “The key is to respect the vineyard and value the fruit. Working with some of the best grower’s and vineyards in the world allows us to farm to the highest possible standards and provides us with the finest fruit available”. Bob is an experienced winemaker whose meticulousness and patience yield wines that are authentic expressions of each variety and vineyard site. While Bob Cabral Wine Consulting keeps him busy, Bob Cabral Wines is now his new muse!
“I grew up growing grapes in the ’60’s & ’70’s and moved to Sonoma County in 1986 - since that time, I’ve worked for some of the most iconic brands, won a bunch of awards, and made fantastic friends who continue to fill my soul with joy. Why, then, would I start my own wine label at this point in life? To get back to basics: Growing grapes, making wine, and being creative along the way. I also wanted to use the wine as a way to give back to the community, and support charities in my adopted hometowns of Healdsburg, Sonoma County, and beyond.”
Bob, his wife Heather and daughter Paige, make their home in Healdsburg, CA, and they started Bob Cabral Wines in 2015. They produce pinot noir, chardonnay and a dry riesling from cold site along the Russian River Valley and the beautiful Sonoma Coast. Minimalist winemaking means using indigenous yeast, low amounts of SO2 and bottling without filtration when possible. Vibrant expressions of these varietals are hand crafted to be enjoyed with food and friends. Bob & Heather receive no salaries, no compensation and after operating expenses, they love giving back to children in crisis, schools, youth groups, local fire victims and those impacted by the COVID virus. They encourage everyone to do the same and give back to your community………… it does wonders for the soul.