While the Calerrain wines has yet to bottle the fruits of its labor from the vineyard neighboring its months-old tasting room, the wines they have on offer cut a wide swath across the grape-growing regions of Santa Clara, San Benito and Monterey counties.

Husband-and-wife winemakers Geoff and Chantal Mace originally opened a tasting room for Calerrain—a portmanteau of “California” and “terrain”—in February 2018 at The Stomping Ground, Gilroy’s self-proclaimed “wine studio.” Last August, they moved into their own space on Jean Ellen Court in Gilroy, where they’ve planted cabernet sauvignon, merlot and Sangiovese grapes. Geoff Mace says the goal is to create a Bordeaux blend with an Italian twist.

While that’s fermenting, they’re offering a tasting menu of vintages sourced from the Santa Clara Valley, the Santa Lucia Highlands above Salinas and the Paicines area south of Hollister. Of the five wines on last Saturday’s tasting menu ($10), the 2017 Winemaker Select malbec ($46), made with fruit from the Paicines, was the standout. Most malbecs skew toward the drier side, but this one is fruit forward and still has the minerality that fans of this varietal enjoy.

My tasting companion, who favors white wines, went back for seconds of the 2017 chardonnay from Santa Lucia ($35). The growing area’s cool climate gives the wine a gentle acidity to balance out the creaminess that Geoff Mace—who previously worked for international wine companies Constellation and Treasury—says comes from barrel fermentation. It’s a good pour for those who prefer some citrus in their chardonnay.

Calerrain’s cozy tasting room, open on weekends, noon-5pm, overlooks its vineyard and surrounding farmland, with a picnic area for larger parties or those who want to enjoy the stellar views. While the walls are unfinished, the tasting room is well appointed and the atmosphere is friendly to both dogs and their humans.

The state of the tasting room is reflective of the wines therein: solid, with room for development. It’s worth a visit to this fledgling winery to get a taste of what’s to come.

Calerrain Wines
10220 Jean Ellen Ct, Gilroy