Norman and Gino rented a small farm building in the Carneros region of Sonoma County. They purchased winegrapes, some 50-gallon oak barrels and a redwood vat. Three hundred cases of Pinot Noir and a small amount of White Riesling represented ZD's first commercial vintage in 1969. The grapes were purchased from the Winery Lake Vineyard, which had been planted a few years earlier by René di Rosa. ZD's 1969 Pinot Noir carries the historical significance of being the first wine to have a Carneros designation on the label. It states, "Made in Sonoma from grapes grown in the Carneros region of Napa." The Chardonnay winegrapes from Winery Lake Vineyard were not in production until 1971, which is the first vintage of ZD Chardonnay.
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