Mad Crush Books

Mad Crush Book

A Memoir of Mythic Vines and Improbable Winemaking


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The widely acclaimed and unlikely true story… In 1880, a star-crossed Englishman planted a Zinfandel vineyard in the wildlands of California’s Central Coast. Nearly a century later, in 1974, an iconoclast from Santa Barbara discovered the Englishman’s abandoned old vines and restored them with nothing more than a pick and shovel. And in the fall of 1995, an improbable cast of characters found their way to this vineyard, embarking on a season of folly and adversity in the pursuit of making one great wine. The Mad Crush is the eyewitness story of that wine and the souls who shaped its making over a period of 115 years—including nude grape stompers, a freethinking village potter, a California surfing legend, a reclusive winemaker, the winemaker’s ex-wife’s one-legged boyfriend, and a mysterious dead coyote. This true account of devotion and redemption will ultimately change how you drink and think about California wine.