Larry Hyde and his family have been at the cutting edge of winegrowing practices for decades. You might not guess if you met Larry, who carries himself with a patient kindness and utter absence of ego, that he’s been such a significant contributor to Californian viticulture’s body of knowledge. He alone has uncovered a wealth of information on clone selections, clone isolations and growing orientations, “just by doing experiments in the vineyard,” he says.
The entire Hyde Vineyard, which Larry purchased and began planting in 1979, slopes down to the south east, absorbing all the gentler morning sun and avoiding the late afternoon’s risk of burn. The nearby San Pablo Bay’s marine influence keeps the area’s temperature moderate through the winter, which means an earlier bud break with little threat of frost. Combined with the steady winds drawn inland from the bay, this means a delightfully long and gradual ripening period for the grapes.
Thirty three years later, Larry Hyde, his wife and their two sons work together every day to maintain and improve their now 200 acres of plantings.