Lodinews.com

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

Vintner hopes winery will help bring businesses to Lodi’s Eastside

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Location

606 Central Ave. Lodi CA

Posted: Saturday, July 6, 2013 12:00 am

Downtown Lodi has its fair share of wine-tasting rooms. There are even more out along the country roads. But Gerardo Espinosa wants to try something new: Opening a winery on Lodi’s Eastside.

The modest storefront at 606 Central Ave. has a colorful brickwork design and cool mint green doors. It’s next door to the now-closed Mar Y Tierra restaurant, and across the street from Dos Hermanos market. Both buildings, and others on the street, are owned by Espinosa’s family.

He is asking the city Planning Commission next week for an alcohol sales permit to move winery operations into the Central Street location.

Espinosa is the owner and winemaker for Viñedos Aurora, which produced its first vintage in 2009. But his family has been in the wine and agricultural industries for decades.

Espinosa’s family often traveled between Mexico and the Central Valley to work in the fields. Eventually they saved enough money to buy land in the Clements Hills viticulture area, where they planted Petite Sirah and Cabernet Sauvignon. To keep the vineyard running, they sold grapes to local winemakers and made their own wine.

Today, the wine is sold online and served at Aurora at Pamplona Tapas on Oak Street. It’s an appetizers and drinks restaurant, and shares a kitchen with Alebrijes Mexican Bistro.

Espinosa acknowledged the new storefront would bring his business to a rough neighborhood. His family members have seen gang violence on Central Avenue, as well as graffiti on the walls.

But he wants to help revitalize the area.

“It’s a hard neighborhood for us to be as a winery. There’s more of an ‘other side of the tracks’ feel there. It’s going to be kind of rough for a while,” he said.

His plan is for the city to see that there are people willing to do business in that area, so more effort will go into developing it.

At first, tasting and sales will be offered by appointment only.

Espinosa said he can’t overlook the building’s large basement for barrel storage. The place needs only a few cosmetic updates to be ready by this year’s harvest.

“I’m hoping to open a new horizon,” he said. “Seeing the new winery in the area will attract more people to go through. This is something positive.”

The Planning Commission will meet on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Carnegie Forum at 305 W. Pine St.

Contact reporter Sara Jane Pohlman at sarap@lodinews.com.

More about

More about

More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don't pretend you're someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don't insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.

Welcome to the discussion.

Video

Popular Stories

Poll

Should graduations return to the Grape Bowl?

Lodi Unified leaders are moving Lodi and Tokay high school graduations from the Grape Bowl to the Spanos Center at UOP in Stockton. They cite limited seating, costs and unpredictable weather at the Grape Bowl. But others say graduations at the Grape Bowl are an important Lodi tradition, and one reason many supported renovating the stadium. What do you think?

Total Votes: 67

Loading…

Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists