On Saturday 9/8/18, Brittani and I toured and tasted the products at Ozan winery. It’s a good experience, but we will pass on their wine and whisky.
We showed up at Ozan and ended up on a tour with 16 other people. The guide was knowledgeable and fun. The vineyard grows only Norton grapes because it is the only viable variety for the location. Annually, they produce about 6,000 bottles of estate wine and about the same amount from juice sourced from California. As a small business, it is clear that they suffer and benefit from growing pains. Revenue is low, they are upgrading their machinery, they are still experimenting with how to make wine.
At the tasting, I found the Chardonnay and Ozan de Peche to be pretty good. They have a time and place to open a bottle. Brittani was a no on these. The remainder of their lineup was a no vote for both of us, ranging from “pass” to “dump the glass”. Everything made with the Norton grapes was a hard no for both of us.
After the wine tasting, we were able to taste their vodka and whisky. Both are distilled offsite from products unrelated to Ozan. Other than adding water to bring the products down to 40%, Ozan is just a bottler and labeler. I won’t bother giving a review of their vodka as no one is going to get a thumbs up from me on that product. Unfortunately, the whisky was a bust as well. In their defense, it is a young whisky and may get better with another year or two in the barrel, but for now I’ll pass.
Overall, Ozan was a bust for us. The upside is that they are a slow paced place to relax and grab a snack with a glass of wine. I especially think of them as a place for retired people or people on vacation to check out. Fortunately, this particular day was a very rare day which Brittani and I had the time to spare. Otherwise we would have been very frustrated by the products and the 2.5 hours that we were there.
Tour, full tasting, and cheese & cracker plate: $23 on Groupon