Bob Lindquist and Louisa Sawyer Lindquist
Bob Lindquist & Louisa Sawyer Lindquist A pioneer in the American Rhône wine movement, Bob Lindquist worked his first wine harvest near Gilroy in 1975. While managing a tasting room in Camarillo, he made repeat trips to the Santa Ynez Valley and he realized his destiny lay in Santa Barbara County. “On my days off, I would come up and visit Sanford & Benedict and Firestone Winery and Santa Ynez Valley Winery and places like that,” Lindquist recalled. “I fell in love with it and I knew this was where I wanted to be.” His first hands-on winemaking experience came at Zaca Mesa. Lindquist soon established his own winery, Qupé Wines, in 1982, producing the first Syrah and Viognier in Santa Barbara County and the first Marsanne in California. In 2015, Lindquist was just the third person to be honored by the Rhone Rangers with its Lifetime Achievement Award. “We are still making wine the same way we were in 1982,” Lindquist said. “We’ve improved the equipment we use, but the basic techniques that we use are still the same. We use tried-andtrue traditional methods. Great grapes always rise to the top.”
Lindquist and Qupe’s new owner, Vintage Wine Estates, parted ways in early 2019. “I’m very proud of what I accomplished with Qupé, as being the pioneering winery for Rhone varieties in this area. Hopefully, that legacy will endure.” Lindquist and his wife, winemaker Louisa Sawyer Lindquist, recently launched a new wine label: Lindquist, made from “clean” grapes, grown organically or biodynamically. Their first Lindquist wine is a 2017 Grenache. The couple owns a wine tasting room in Arroyo Grande and Sawyer Lindquist Vineyard in the Edna Valley. Sawyer Lindquist is a wine industry visionary in her own right; “California’s First Lady of Albariño” produced the white Spanish varietal in 1999, the first Albariño vintage in the state. On being female in a male-dominated industry: “It’s a different playing field now than it was 10 or 15 years ago and that’s noticeable,” said Sawyer Lindquist. “The world is changing; now it’s no big deal, really.” Wendy Thies Sell is a four-time Emmy Award–winning journalist, travel, wine and lifestyle writer and emcee. Wendy anchored the local TV news on California’s Central Coast for 12 years at KSBY and KCOY. She resides with her family in northern Santa Barbara County.
EdibleSantaBarbara.com SUMMER 2019 | 59
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