Sonoma Coast AVA
One of California's most passionate Pinot producers
The goal at Talisman Wines is very simple: to create exquisite Pinot Noirs that are true to their roots and accurately reflect their places of origin. The winery was founded by Scott and Marta Rich in 1993 as an ultra-boutique Pinot Noir project, one that has only grown from 203 cases to 1,900 cases in the past 23 years. Now with eleven different Pinot Noirs making up their lineup, Scott and Marta continue to seek out hidden gem vineyards to bring further distinction to the Talisman name.
Scott Rich had his first exposure to winemaking at the age of 6, watching family friends make wine in their Salt Lake City basement. His father was also an avid collector of red Burgundies and, when he was old enough, he enjoyed sharing special bottles from the cellar - a pastime that played a major role in Scott’s lifelong passion for Pinot Noir. Scott went on to study Landscape Architecture and Environmental Design at UC Davis, and after a few years of working in the field, realized his heart was, in fact, in winemaking. He returned to his alma mater in 1990 to study Viticulture and Enology and began his career in the wine industry.
Upon graduating, Scott worked as a research enologist for Robert Mondavi and RH Phillips, where he made hundreds of different lots of wines. He credits his early mentors (Merry Edwards, Tony Soter, Clark Smith, and Francis Mahoney) with helping to refine his winemaking talents. Scott has been winemaker at Mont St. John Cellars, Etude, Carneros Creek, and most recently, Moraga Vineyards, where he still stands as winemaker today. It was at Mont St. John that Scott was offered a few tons of fruit that would become the start of Talisman Wines. His first vintage was in 1993.
Scott is joined by his wife Marta Rich, who is the Director of Sales and Marketing for Talisman Wines and also the Director of Sales for Calera Wine Company in Hollister, California. Marta found her love for wine at a young age as well, watching her father make wine in their Minnesota basement.
The name for their winery comes from a special charm, or talisman, that was given to Scott by his American Indian mother. The talisman was blessed by a medicine man and intended to protect the bearer. One of the elements of the talisman was the medicine wheel, which has become the logo for Talisman Wines. It represents the circle of life and the four directions, reminding us of our place in the universe. The rays around the logo represent the sun, which provides energy for life on earth and ripens the grapes, allowing us to revel in the pleasures of life including fine wine.
We hope you enjoy this selection from Talisman Wines, one of California’s most passionate Pinot producers.
Map of the area
Scott Rich - Owner & Winemaker
Scott Rich stands as both owner and winemaker for his artisan label, Talisman Wines. Since the first Talisman vintage in 1993, it has been Scott’s mission to craft Pinot Noirs with harmonious balance that will age for many, many years. His original inspiration came from his father’s amazing Burgundy collection, prompting the realization that these Pinot Noirs can, even after 20 years, possess delicacy, nuance, brightness, remarkable depth and sensual texture. It is his hope to express each vineyard site individually and to celebrate that unique character in each wine in the Talisman portfolio. His goal is that the Pinots are enjoyable upon release but also worthy of aging for years to come.