After years of holding winemaking and vineyard management positions for noted wineries like Honig, Robert Craig, and Ehlers Estate, and as interesting consulting opportunities accumulated, Rudy decided to branch out and enhance his career by working on smaller more intimate projects as an independent winemaking consultant. Zuidema Wines, begun in 1999, has morphed into a family of operations that now includes Shadybrook Estate, Red Cap Vineyards, Southern Roots, Napa de Oro, Phamus Wines, and Alyris Winery. Our personal wine brand, Zuidema Grenache, arose when a vineyard owner in Rutherford, whom Rudy had been working with for a few years, was considering a re-plant of a Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard block. Rudy and some of the other grape buyers approached the owners with a proposal to change to Grenache with pre-plant contracts to secure the fruit. After some negotiation the deal was done and the idea became reality in 2011. The 2014 was our inaugural vintage.