Tablas Creek named VinePair’s ‘Winemaking Team of the Year’
Winery recognized for its commitment to sustainability
– Tablas Creek Vineyard in Paso Robles has received the 2022 New Wave Wine Award for “Winemaking Team of the Year.” Presented by VinePair, the New Wave Awards recognize “spirits, wine, and beer professionals who have distinguished themselves in the past year for propelling the industry forward to a brighter, more equitable, and sustainable future.”
In the article announcing the award, VinePair noted two particular reasons for giving the award to Tablas Creek. First, they highlight Tablas Creek’s position “at the forefront of sustainability for decades” and, most specifically, their commitment to becoming the first Regenerative Organic Certified vineyard in the world, “which exists to create an agricultural system that doesn’t just minimize the harm that agriculture can cause, but to actively use agriculture to attempt to combat climate change, resource scarcity, and other challenges.” Beginning with the 2021 vintage, Tablas Creek’s estate wines bear the seal of ROC.
Second, they point to Tablas Creek’s willingness to challenge the stigma of wine in a box, a package that offers advantages in preservation, storage, and portability while reducing the packaging carbon footprint by 84% compared to glass bottles: “In a decade or so, we might look back at 2022 as the year when boxed wine finally broke free from some of the stigma attached to the format and made a compelling case to the broader wine-drinking market. If indeed that proves to be true, one of the catalysts was undoubtedly the small but noteworthy venture of the winemaking team at Tablas Creek,” wrote VinePair.
Tablas Creek’s winemaking team is led by Executive Winemaker Neil Collins, Senior Assistant Winemaker Chelsea Franchi, and Assistant Winemaker Craig Hamm. The trio, along with Proprietor Jason Haas, have overseen a combined 71 vintages at Tablas Creek. This honor follows Jason Haas’s naming by Food & Wine Magazine as a 2022 Drinks Innovator of the Year and Neil Collins’ recognition from his peers in the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance as 2020 Wine Industry Person of the Year.
“Receiving the Next Wave Wine Award was a great recognition for our team,” said Haas. “We’re always trying to use our position to move the needle on sustainability, from farming to packaging to how we treat our people. I’m particularly excited for Neil, Chelsea, Craig, and the rest of our great cellar crew, whose amazing work often goes on behind the scenes.”