Tasting Lucas & Lewellen Wines with Michael Lewellen

Up on the 71st floor of the US Bank in Los Angeles, I enjoyed an informative luncheon at the elegant 71Above restaurant overlooking the city to the mountains and sea. At my table sat Michael Lewellen, the son of Royce Lewellen from Lucas & Lewellen Winery. Michael shared with me a little bit about himself and the history of his father’s winery with Louie Lucas.

Michael grew up in Santa Barbara County and went to the University of Colorado, Boulder graduating with a business degree. Instead of coming back to the winery, he worked in Santa Barbara for the retailer The Territory Ahead for many years, before becoming the winery's Managing Partner, leading the marketing & sales, finance, and tasting room.  

In 1997, the family bought Valley View Vineyard and Louis Lucas (known as “The Dirtman") enhanced the grapes by pruning, trellising and planting more vines to increase the vine density. Then in 1998, they bought a neighboring vineyard in Los Alamos and started making wine at other wineries, until they built their own facility in Buellton. Next, they created a tasting room and hired winemaker Megan McGrath to make their wine. “McGrath has a soil science degree from Cal Poly SLO and UC Davis,” said Michael. 

Jill Weinlein

Los Angeles based Jill Weinlein covers travel, food and lifestyle destinations for multiple newspapers, magazines and websites. Her areas of expertise include, luxury travel, culinary reviews, cruising and family travel destinations. Born in Los Angeles, Jill studied Communications and Theatre Arts at UCLA. She has a a Dine and Travel blog - and she writes a weekly restaur...(Read More)

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