Hippocrates called olive oil “the great therapeutic.” ~ Anonymous
Terra Savia, or Wise Earth, is a must-visit if you are in Hopland, CA. Sitting on one hundred sun dappled acres, Terra Savia has a relaxed, down to that wise earth feel about it.
The tasting room is a warehouse-like structure, filled with magnificent, one-of-a-kind furniture made of recycled wood and reclaimed old growth redwood. Tables full of knots and holes, which would hold all your Thanksgiving guests, plus the turkey, ham and all the side dishes. No need for a kiddies table with this in the house.
The accompanying benches, chairs, bookshelves and fun, unique artwork is made by a talented local artist, Ben Frey. Yvonne, the owner/operator of Terra Savia will be happy to give you his number.
Speaking of, Yvonne is pretty talented herself. In addition to the wines she produces, Yvonne is a master at olive oils. Her olive press takes up a significant corner of the tasting room and a demonstration of how it works is impressive.
Paul Evans was pouring in the tasting room. He had only one wine open, but suggested I try the olive oils (the Olivano part of the title). With his help, I can give a decent report on a subject way over my head.
The Fontaio, an extra virgin oil, has a rich taste of green apples, hazelnuts, almonds and a touch of pepper. This oil is a lovely bronze color and would do just fine as a light salad dressing.
Leccino has a mild fruity flavor of green apples and mint. It is a delicate oil that could be used as a salad dressing or as an appetizer with fresh bread. YUM.
Maraiolo is bold. This oil is quite spicy, fragrant and a definite peppery finish. Paul recommended it be used as a meat marinade.
The Meyer Lemon is made of olives and Meyer Lemon peels. It is very lemony and light. This would be a perfect fish marinade.
Terra Savia also produces Wildflower Honey.
The one wine I sampled was the 2011 Chardonnay. This was a treat: made with organic grapes and unoaked, the Chardonnay was fresh with green apples, tea and grass.
Other wines produced at Terra Savia include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, a Meritage and Petit Verdot.
Any Terra Savia product can be custom bottled and labeled. Time to think Christmas!
Terra Savia produces 2000 to 4000 cases a year. The fruit is all organic and estate grown. Meticulous detail is given to producing top notch wines with the least environmental impact.
As if the wines and olive oils are not enough, Terra Savia has a rental home at the back of the vineyard that I can personally assure you is the most relaxing place in Hopland. Isolated, quiet and serene, this place is both dog and child friendly. With a big front porch overlooking the vineyards, a swing set for the youngsters, an above ground pool and perfect-for-star-gazing hot tub, you may end up like me: telling Yvonne she needs to start filling out eviction papers.
Hopland is great place with many fun tasting rooms. Terra Savia is a good winery to start at. But don’t just take my word for it. Make it your destination, soon.
As always, drink and drive responsibly.