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Conversations with Connor & Rebecca McMahon

Today we’d like to introduce you to Connor & Rebecca McMahon.

Fulldraw began in 2012 when Connor McMahon jumped on the opportunity to acquire a 100-acre vineyard site in the Templeton Gap of west side Paso Robles. He & Rebecca met later that year. Both came into wine differently – Rebecca studied at UC Davis and received her degree in Viticulture & Oenology and Connor likes to say he “turned a vice into a career”.

With six years of winemaking and farming experience at adjacent property, Booker Vineyard, Connor understood that with its limestone soils and cooling maritime influences, this was a place where the Rhone varieties he loved would thrive. Connor works closely with crew members following organic farming practices in order to best take advantage of the site’s demanding soil and extreme exposures. Fulldraw aims to create a sustainable and healthy environment for each and every vine in order for the resulting fruit to translate into beautifully balanced wines that fully express the unique place that is their home. Connor & Rebecca live with their daughter, Maeve, a baby on the way, and two dogs, Yadi and Duke, on the vineyard. Winemaking and grape growing is not just a way to make a living – it’s an everyday integral part of life. Whether on a family walk through the vines or blending in the winery, we make every decision with the health and integrity of our family and home in mind.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
Over the last two years we, my wife Rebecca and I, have had our winery under construction. With light at the end of the tunnel, we finally received the green light from the county and were able to open for tastings February 10 of 2020. Obviously, we all know what came next! We had our soft opening of the facility and then the “shelter in place” order… It hasn’t necessarily been an easy year to open our business but thankfully we have received amazing support from our local community and our members. Our core view of winemaking is that great wine starts in the vineyard. As a farmer, Mother Nature always throws curveballs for us in the vineyard but we roll with the punches. Lack of rain, frost, diseased vines… It makes what we do exciting and keeps us on our toes.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
An amazing aspect of working in this industry is that we are able to exercise our artistic and creative abilities in our professional business everyday! For Connor, winemaking and grape growing is truly an art. He strives to bring out the best our fruit and terroir has to offer by creatively expressing and creating an identity for each single varietal or blend we make. Each of our wines have their own identity At Fulldraw, we want to create wines that people not only enjoy but a culture and recognizable brand that people want to be a part of! For each wine, we created labels that were true to us and expressed different aspects of our life through the story that goes along with each of them. Each of our labels are pieces of art that we worked with the artist to create, purchased, or Rebecca did herself! Since all our labels are so different and unique, to unify our wines we incorporated a small line of negative space that wraps around each bottle from the front label to the back through our logo. If you line up all our bottles, this line of negative space is at the same height on all our Burgandy and Bordeaux bottles.

What matters most to you? Why?
Family, friends and community is everything. We love to cook and entertain, and in our home, that usually includes popping some corks on amazing wine. By creating and sharing our wines with those we know and hope to know, our intent is to inspire community, enhance people’s lives, and create memories that give meaning to the time we spend together.

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