The Crew

We gather every year

for a harvest that always begins with smiles

days start early...

and often

day and night, vineyard and winery blur together

it feels like the fastest marathon

running every day with the same team

strange things start to happen

while working toward those small but vital moments...

where quality sings

encouraging the personality of each lot, each vineyard to shine

together as a team of people sharing a healthy obsession

to make a little magic happen each year

Troyce Hoffman is a northern Californian based photographer specializing in documentary based work. He was embedded with us during much of harvest 2016 for this story. In 2015 he helped us create The Rite of Interns. You can find Troyce and more of his work at troycehoffman.com

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Stories

We’ve been making wine for almost 20 years although it still often feels like it all just began yesterday. Sometimes it is worth taking a moment to pause and think about where we’ve come from and how we got to here. These stories, told by us and others we’ve met along the road, make us smile – ever grateful for the journey.

1997-2005

ROCKY BEGINNINGS

When we started, we had little more than a shared love of Pinot Noir and the desire to go and make some of our own. We took all that energy and committed ourselves to try our luck. It wasn’t easy. It wasn’t always even fun. These formative years tested our resolve and patience beyond compare but laid the quality foundation for what was to come.

The Tip Envelope

By KB
Illustrations by Beth Whybrow Leeds

2005-2009

PEOPLE ARE WATCHING

After almost nine vintages under our belt something curious started to happen. Interest in what we were doing grew and we began to gain recognition for our winemaking style. Our long awaited ‘overnight success’ struck and the challenge become less one of ‘staying alive’ to one of trying to keep up with the attention and demands while continuing our commitment to quality. We were also finally able to share our success with the original investors who generously backed our vision.

Nothin' Like a Dame

A conversation with Fred Dame (Master Sommellier)
By Matt Villano

2009 - PRESENT

Onward

California Pinot Noir endures in the fine wine world and we are delighted to be a continued part of that conversation. As we mature as a winery we grow in different ways. We construct a custom winery tailored to how we make wine. We work with new financial partners who share our vision for quality. We invest in our first vineyard and begin to grow our own fruit. We are awarded the coveted ‘wine of the year’ – the only Pinot Noir to do so to date. Our focus, however, remains the same as before: making the best Pinot Noir we can.

The Rite of Interns

By KB Winemaking
Photography by Troyce Hoffman

The Crew

By KB Winemaking
Photography by Troyce Hoffman

Press

We’ve been fortunate to have nice things said about our wines and what we do. Here are some highlights.

1997-2005

Pinot Report, October 2003 "This Pinot really shows off the quality what the Cohn Vineyard can do in the right winemaking hands..."

Wine Spectator, September 2004 "Partners Dan Kosta and Michael Browne followed their taste buds into winemaking, parlaying their experience as sommeliers into a boutique Pinot winery in Sonoma..."

2005-2009

Wine Spectator, December 2005 "#11 Wine of the Year..."

Wine Spectator, May 2006 "I'm also starting to believe, thanks to them and many others...that we have entered a new era for California Pinot Noir..."

Wine Spectator, December 2006 "#7 Wine of the Year..."

Wine Spectator, April 2007 "What Dan Kosta and Michael Browne have accomplished in 2005 is every bit as staggering as their watershed 2004 vintage.."

Wine Spectator, December 2009 "#4 Wine of the Year..."

2009-Present

Wine Spectator, May 2010 "Fans of Kosta Browne won't be disappointed by the 2008's. This is another very strong vintage for this Sonoma County winery, with 11 outstanding wines that show the level of quality possible..."

Wine Spectator, December 2011 "#1 Wine of the Year..."

Vineyard & Winery Management, March 2012 "The Sonoma County producers long road to overnight success..."

Wine & Vines, September 2013 "Kosta Browne is ready to crush the 2013 vintage in new, custom built winery.

Vinous, July 2014 "Kosta Browne has done a marvelous job with their four 2012 Santa Lucia Highlands Pinots. These wines show why Kosta Browne is among the top Pinot Producers in California."

Wine Advocate, October 2015 "Looking at the 2013's, this was obviously a great vintage for this estate and all the wines showed sensational purity and freshness paired with layered, nicely concentrated and textured profiles. I'd say it's the finest lineup I've tasted from this estate..."

Wine Advocate, September 2016 "This was another rock star lineup from Kosta Browne and it’s certainly one of the most impressive lineups I tasted all year. And while I generally consider 2013 to be a better vintage than 2014, these 2014s are a step up over last year’s releases, which were no slouches either."