Summer 2020 Letter

Enrique Pallares, wife Laura, and mother Silvia at Casa Carmen.

Dear Casa Carmen Family,

Many times we have talked about the importance of living close to nature and about our reasons for doing so. Perhaps nothing has made this point as significant as the events of recent times. While our world seems to be bursting at the seams, nature marches on with its rhythms and its cycles. The grapes that hang on the vineyards of our region are growing plump and quickly moving towards that beautiful spectacle we call veraison, when clusters begin to change color with the onset of ripening. While so much is uncertain in the world, we hold on to the immediate and most real, to the certainties that do fill our life: the inevitability of harvest, the beautiful and arduous work of properly fermenting those grapes, the unconditional love of those around us.

This is not a stance of apathy towards world problems, but the most involved stance of all. Citizenship, Wendell Berry wrote in 1968, “requires devotion and dedication, and a certain inescapable bewilderment and suffering… But it begins at home.” For him, this meant, quite literally, the care of one’s home and family, one’s relationship to nature and community. Polarization is, in fact, the result of a perversion and a misunderstanding of what it means to be a citizen. It is the result of a world full of radicals and empty of people. It is the replacing of real community with political abstractions and eschatological predictions that are too large for meaningful action, too difficult to implement, and that somehow always benefit their proponents.

A liberal democracy is, after all, nothing but the sum of its parts and even our healthiest and strongest institutions depend on the health and strength of our hearts, on the health and strength of our relationships with one another. Here at Casa Carmen, we believe that a gulp of crisp wine can be a bridge that reaches over the widest chasms of humankind. That “cheers” or “salud” have the healing power to reactivate our human pact of love against all odds. We believe that good results can only be achieved through good actions, and that wine plays a foundational role in that way of life. We like to think that we contribute in a small way to the great task of every generation: to leave the world a better place.

Thank you for your ongoing support. We hope that you enjoy these wines in good company (even if its virtual!) and thank you for being part of something beautiful.



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