We celebrated our 125th Anniversary at Seghesio Family Vineyards in 2020 by considering how best to honor our stories, our people, and our history. We concluded that to honor our past, we must ensure our future, and ask: How can we do better for our environment and our customers? How can we revitalize and recharge for the next 125-year chapter? We resolved to evolve our wine bottles, closures and labels in ways that improve the consistency of our wines, improve our carbon footprint, and share our stories and passion in new and exciting ways.
We have experienced tremendous stress over the past few fire seasons and have decided that we needed to do something to reduce our carbon emissions that are linked to climate change. Glass weight represents on average 40% of the total carbon emissions of a bottle of wine and reducing its weight is the single largest carbon emission reduction on which we can act. We also believe that sourcing our glass locally, instead of overseas, will help our communities and further reduce our carbon emissions. We have partnered with a California glass manufacturer to source a singular, lighter-weight style of bottle across our entire portfolio of wines. The bottles we are using are 18% lighter, made from 30% recycled glass and 100% from California raw materials, and the glass is performing in every way the same as heavier alternatives. This lighter-weight bottle (496 grams) reduces our glass consumption by 156 metric tons every vintage.
While we made this change in early 2020, without realizing how the pandemic would impact global shipping and supply chains, we now see this shift will also bolster us against the hardships of future global disasters. We will continue to explore reducing our glass weight to reduce further our carbon footprint.
Selecting a wine closure (cork, screwcap, etc.) can be a very significant and personal decision for winemakers. There are pros and cons to every option. At Seghesio, we prioritize protecting and preserving wine quality, above all else, because we want every bottle of our wine to delight you when you open and share it with family and friends. For many years, cork taint has created a high degree of bottle variation and prevented that consistent delight. We estimate that up to 10% of our wines in the past may have been affected by cork taint, a percentage which is too high for our liking. We are now using new, micro-agglomerate corks treated to remove compounds leading to cork taint. These uniform closures will enable truly consistent aging of our wines, without giving up our time-honored ritual of pulling a cork. Thanks to these closures, we can promise that our wines are cork taint free.
One of the most visible and exciting ways we’ve commemorated our milestone was freshening up our look – at the winery, and on every bottle of wine. You may have already noticed new Italian bistro décor and seating areas at the tasting room. With the release of our 2019 vintage wines over 2021-2022, you’ll also find a new generation of label designs.
For our Zinfandels, we kept all the core elements that make Seghesio Zin so recognizable, and sharpened them up to be more legible and more harmonious when all the different wines are lined up on your table. Our new Single Vineyard Zinfandel labels are inspired by the classic labels of great Barolos (which, like our founders, hail from the Piedmont region of Italy), capturing the essence of what makes each unique vineyard so compelling.
We’ve also refreshed our Italian Heritage collection labels – again looking to the great wines of Italy for inspiration. Thoughtful details on each bottle express the character and individuality of the wine. We know this change may look dramatic to some of our longtime fans. We truly believe that it was important to bring harmony to this collection of wines and create a sense of family. Change is hard, but we would not be where we are today without looking forward and seizing opportunities to adapt and evolve. Through our five generations has always come evolution. Thank you for your continued trust in our efforts.
Winemaker Andy Robinson & The Seghesio Team