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SNAKE BITTEN


Like all good stories, the story behind Coiled Wines is filled with dreams, disappointments, and most of all, a lot of twists in plot. The Snake River Valley, Idaho’s first grape-growing AVA, plays the leading role in this drama and I wanted a name that honors the site where my grapes grow.  As its name suggests, The Snake River Valley winds its way through southwestern Idaho creating a topography that is as varied as it is stunning.  This valley is the culmination of volcanic activity and two major floods, creating soils that possess a unique combination of lava rock and lake sediment.  These well-draining soils combined with the dry climate and high elevations result in a distinctive geological site that produces the grapes inspiring the Coiled label.


Leslie Preston
Proprietor and Winemaker

In a supporting role, I, the winemaker, have followed an equally winding path, eventually finding my way to this project.  It all started in France.  Several experiences as an exchange student in various regions of France left me with an appreciation for the simple pleasures life has to offer, including breaking bread and drinking wine with the ones we love.  I pursued studies in French literature, thinking this would provide a life rich in simple pleasures.  After many, many, many years of study, I realized academia was not a good fit for me.  Plot twist.  Teaching French at U.C. Davis, I had several students who were in the Viticulture and Enology program.  A light went off, and after several more years of study, I completed my M.S. in Enology from U.C. Davis.  My professional training includes time at Clos du Bois, in Sonoma CA, and Saintsbury in Carneros CA, before landing a dream job at Stags’Leap Winery in the Stag’s Leap District of the Napa Valley.  Life was great.  I loved my job.  Plot twist.  My husband and I went on a wine adventure in New Zealand and we returned with a lot of great wine and a baby on board.  After my son was born I chose to quit my job so I could spend more time with him and enjoy the simple pleasure of being a mom.  Plot twist.  It drove me nuts, even though I love him dearly most of the time.  I realized making wine simply had to be part of the equation, but I needed to find a way to…keep it simple.  What better way than to make wine from Idaho grapes while living in Napa, CA!  After four years of being a road warrior, our family if finally moving back to Boise so our children’s adventures can begin with Idaho roots.


Juice Connoisseur

Winemaking 101

This story could only end with a twist, and thus, my closure simply had to be a screw cap.

Deliberate choices have guided this project, and I saw no reason to stop with the packaging of my wine.  My wine is an expression of the Snake River Valley and I am unwilling to let cork taint dampen that expression.  Idahoans are embracing the local wine industry, not because it is steeped in tradition, but because it is emerging as a reputable producer of quality wines.  I view the screw cap as a vital tool in ensuring the quality of my wine, in every bottle.

Here’s to those following their own winding path!