Lutum

California / USA

At A Glance

Winemaker(s)

Gavin Chanin

Appellation

Sonoma Coast, Santa Barbara County

Varieties

Chardonnay, Pinot Noir

Farming

Sustainable

Quote

Each vineyard has its own story. Our job is to let the wine tell it.

Their Story

“Over the last few decades, California’s great Pinot Noir and Chardonnay sites have been recognized by the winemaking community. Bill Price owns and farms a few such sites—including the Durell Vineyard and Gap’s Crown Vineyard in Sonoma, and Gavin Chanin has over ten years of winemaking experience with other great vineyards within Santa Barbara County.” — Gavin Chanin and Bill Price, Owners of Lutum

After two years of working with Gavin Chanin and his phenomenal Chanin Wines, it was an easy decision for us to say “YES!” when he asked us to begin working with his newest Chardonnay and Pinot Noir project, Lutum. While the Lutum wines share a common characteristic with the Chanin Wines in that they both present a sense of place, the terroir, in which they were born, the Lutum wines are stylistically very different than Gavin’s first born project, Chanin Wine. Gavin uses no whole cluster in the Lutum Pinot Noirs and more new French oak for all the Lutum wines. Through teaming up with vineyard owner and farmer, Bill Price, Gavin has also been able to bottle Sonoma Coast wines from two of his favorite vineyards; Durell and Gap’s Crown. The Lutum wines are robust, rich, and fiercely structured all while maintaining the classic Gavin Chanin acidity, minerality, and freshness. Gavin’s ability to produce Chardonnay and Pinot Noir which balance the line between powerful and elegant is something which leaves us in wonderment every time we taste the Lutum wines.

“LUTUM was born from a shared vision between Bill Price, entrepreneur and owner of Classic Wines and Price Family Vineyards, and winemaker Gavin Chanin. Their wine focuses on small-production, single-vineyard Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from prime vineyard sites in California. The name LUTUM is Latin for dirt or soil, referencing their mission to make wines that express these great sites, with little to mask the vineyards’ natural character. Together, they are the Bards of LUTUM.”

– Gavin Chanin and Bill Price

Interview with Gavin Chanin, Co-Owner and Winemaker of Lutum

Where were you born and raised? Los Angeles If you could briefly describe your approach in the vineyard what would it be? We focus on many of the oldest and coldest vineyards in Santa Barbara. All of our farming is sustainable and most utilize the best pieces of biodynamic or organic farming for that on piece of land. Basically to keep it simple—great dirt, cold climate, tons of cool sunshine, old wood and everything we touch we keep it simple to have a minimal impact on our wines and the next generation’s soil. What excites you most about your vineyards? I love to explore and find unique pieces of dirt than don’t exist anywhere else. S&B is a great example. We work with little pieces in that vineyard that are just perfect for our wines, and we have no comparison because their is no place like it. Also working with old vines always gets me excited—especially when they are older than me. It drives home the point that we have to take care of what we have. If you could say one thing to the sommeliers who are introducing people to your wines for the first time, what would it be? As important as vineyards are, and they are they key, I would want to sommelier to know how much labor and love went into the wines. These really are handmade, craft wines. We make a tinny amount of them but we touch everything we do and that leaves a unique signature. The vineyard teams are the same way. You can’t make a great wine without passionate, extremely skilled and experienced people. What is your favorite type of music? I listen to everything from rap to classical. Just not country music. If you could have any superhero power, what would you choose? That is tough. I know it is a usual answer but I have to go with flying. It would save me a ton of time during harvest—we have vineyards that are only 4 miles apart but take 45 minutes to drive in a car. You could also check out incoming weather and turn back time. It would be great for marketing too. I assume if you can fly, you can drink and fly?