Who We Are

The story of Marine Layer begins with our intimate knowledge of the best vineyard sites for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in California. We’ve been making wine in the Sonoma Coast for over a decade, first with Banshee Wines.  Over these years, we have established and solidified partnerships and friendships with some of the region’s top farmers that are the inspiration for Marine Layer.

Organic farming, heritage clones, hand-harvesting, and an obsession for quality guide our path. Every bottling of Marine Layer is produced in tiny quantities, some as small as 4 barrels. We use native yeast in our winemaking, minimal intervention, barrel-fermentations for our whites, and extended barrel aging for our reds. We’ve spared no expense to make wines that will compete with the very best Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs in the world.

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WINEMAKER • ROB FISCHER

A Napa kid born and raised, my career in the wine industry began over 20 years ago at Domaine Carneros as a stock person for the tasting room. I gained an appreciation for wine, not just the enjoyment of consumption but the science and chemistry of the winemaking process that starts with the soil and farming of the land. It still amazes me how many disciplines feed into winemaking and grape growing and is the absolute thing I love most about my job. Over the years and harvests, I’ve been a part of making over 30 varieties from exceptional vineyards in Napa, Sonoma, Santa Barbara, the Sierra Foothills up to Oregon, and both the North and South Islands of New Zealand. Through these experiences, I found a passion for making great cool-climate Pinot and Chardonnay. Both widely planted varieties throughout California, but it was clear that the best expressions were being grown in the far reaches of coastal growing areas. Sites that come with inherent risk and are mostly considered marginal for grape growing. Not shy of hard work or a challenge at hand, when Baron presented the Marine Layer concept to me, I immediately felt the infectious energy and enthusiasm. Baron and I share several things in common – we both are fathers of beautiful daughters (5 of them in total), a love of great Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and grower Champagne as well as a love to enjoy life without taking ourselves too seriously. And so, we’ve embarked on this journey, with no sacrifices, to craft the best damn wines expressive of these extraordinary sites and the detail that goes into farming them and ushering them into the bottle. I hope that you enjoy them as much as we do making them!

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OWNER • BARON ZIEGLER

Tequila, Champagne, great Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir…that’s about the diet that I’ve been on for the last 20+ years. It’s a tough life, but someone has to do it. I started collecting wine when I was 15 before I even liked the taste of wine. Needless to say, I got a lot of weird looks in my freshman dorm room when people saw wood boxes of Bordeaux under my bed. According to many at the time, I was considered a bit eccentric or “special.” When I turned 18, I got a job in a wine shop in Boston where I could taste, learn, and make a little money. So started my 22 years of being in wine as my profession and obsession. I’m not a winemaker. I never had the patience or time to learn, but I’m lucky to have Rob, one of the best winemakers I’ve ever worked with, as my partner in crime at Marine Layer. This is a family affair. My three girls, now 3, 6, and 8, helped us stomp the Pinot grapes at harvest (start ‘em young, I say), and my precocious 8-year-old has been blind tasting with me since we crushed our first grapes for Marine Layer. She approves of the wines we’ve put in bottle so far, as do I. Marine Layer is our soul, our passion, our hobby, our hearts.

sonoma coast wines  |  @marinelayerwines

308-b center street | healdsburg, ca 95448 | 707.473.8214 | customerservice@marinelayerwines.com

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