Deborah Hall is the owner and winemaker for Gypsy Canyon. She’s not only a super nice lady, she makes some amazing wines, in particular, her Old Vines Angelica. This is a sherry-type wine that was made by the mission fathers throughout the southern parts of California. In fact, Angelica was supposedly named for the city of Los Angeles.
Check out the video below and she tells about how she found the old vines of Mission grapes on her property. BTW, head-trained grapes are ones that are not put up on trellises. More about Deborah and how we got to know her below the video.
We got to know Deborah Hall when Michael started his own little ancient vines project here in Los Angeles. Michael got permission to harvest the grapes off of two vines at the oldest building still standing in Los Angeles, the Avila Adobe on Olvera Street. We’re pretty sure the vines were planted when the adobe was built in 1818, but there’s no way of knowing. The vines are well over 100 years old and are quite possibly the oldest vines in the state.
Once Michael found out that he was dealing with Mission grapes – a variety grown here by the Franciscans who built the California missions, he contacted Deborah Hall to get some pointers on how to make Angelica. Deborah was not only kind enough to share her recipe, she invited us up to lunch at her home and winery. She not only fed us and poured us her incredible wines, she took us out to see the grapes she’d found while clearing brush on her property. Anne had the video camera and we had a blast talking about old vines.