In 1980, Walter Schug founded Schug Estate in Western Carneros. Schug was the winemaker at Joseph Phelps for many years, and he helped to create the style of Insignia, Bacchus, and Eisele.
One of the main reasons for Schug’s move to Carneros was his love for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The distinguishing feature of his vineyard is its proximity to the Petaluma Gap. This break between the surrounding mountains funnels wind through the vines. The wind stress in turn causes the skins of the fruit to thicken, imparting Schug’s characteristic pepper and spice flavors.
In 1995, Sonoma born Michael Cox joined the winemaking team. Schug Estate produces sparkling wine, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon.