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Heart in Mouth

by Organic Spa Magazine

Nestled away in Potter Valley, in California’s Mendocino County, the McFadden family vineyard and farm, at the headwaters of the Russian River, is a hotbed of plant, insect and animal biodiversity.

In the vineyard, delicious wines are produced under three labels—Blue Quail, now celebrating its 50th anniversary; McFadden (sparkling); and Fontaine (rosé)—and all the grapes are estate-grown and organic. At their organic farm, the McFaddens grow garlic, bay leaves, herbs and more.

They’ve taken artistry to a new level with a range of edible wreaths, garlands and swags, made with fresh-picked bay leaves, chili peppers, garlic and herbs, including the beautiful Heart Wreath, pictured right, which is a unique and lovely gift for Valentine’s Day—or any day! The wreaths are seasonal, harvested and handmade from October through January, and will maintain their structure until the bay leaves are used up in stocks, soups and stews.

Farming organically since the vinyard started over 50 years ago, patriarch Guinness McFadden, father of five, believes it is important to “leave the land better than we found it.” They were certified by the California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) in 1991, but in practice, they’ve been organic since the first vines were planted in 1970. Says McFadden, “It just seemed like the right thing to do.” https://bluequail.com

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