As one of eleven children in the pioneering Fetzer family of Mendocino County, Patti Fetzer recalls, “We all wore a lot of hats. Our family did everything, with very little outside help. When building our winery on the Home Ranch in Redwood Valley, my brothers pounded the nails while my sisters and I followed behind with paint buckets and brushes.” Patti spent her childhood on the family’s Home Ranch, a 720-acre Redwood Valley property purchased by her parents, Barney and Kathleen Fetzer, in 1958.
Patti acknowledges her entire family for influencing her life. The fifth born child of Kathleen and Barney, she grew up in a self-sufficient household that valued hands-on, hard work. Read More>>
Horacio Ortega has worked the land at Patianna Organic Vineyard for twenty-three years, most of his adult life. He began working for the Fetzer family and continued as vineyard foreman when Patti Fetzer acquired the 126-acre ranch in 1998. “Horacio is intimate with every subtle nuance of our vineyard; he is a ‘natural’ when it comes to farming,” says Patti.
A native of Michoacán, Mexico, Horacio developed an appreciation of nature and a feel for farming as a young boy. He worked along side his father on the family farm in Cerro Colorado, cultivating guava, mango, watermelon, bananas, cucumbers and tomatoes. Horacio immigrated to the United States in 1984 and became a United States citizen in 2000.
Horacio lives on the Patianna ranch with his wife and three children. When not pruning, cultivating and tending to Patianna’s vines, Horacio keeps horses and raises Patianna’s chickens, goats and sheep. He enjoys maintaining his own vegetable gardens, always with his father’s farm in mind.