Sherwood House Vineyards on themselves: Dr. Charles and Barbara Smithen always wanted to live among the vineyards, and were determined to make that dream come true. They were North Fork, Long Island residents for over twenty years, and they finally found their dream home in 1996. The farmhouse, which was built in 1860, and the surrounding 38 acres of former corn and potato fields offered outstanding conditions for growing wine grapes. The Smithen’s initially planted Chardonnay vines from Burgundian clones, but after careful research and planning, have since added Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot. The Smithen’s house and vineyards are proudly displayed on the front of each bottle of Sherwood House wine. When Gilles met Barbara and Charles in 1996, he told them that he could make the type of wine that they enjoyed drinking during their travels to France. He went on to produce some of Long Island’s best awarded wines, including his 2008 Chardonnay which was awarded “Best in Class” and 91 points at the 2011 Los Angeles International Wine Competition and his 2005 Blanc de Blanc which received a 90 rating from Wine & Spirits Magazine. Gilles Martin – With a Master of Oenology degree from France’s prestigious Universite Montpellier I, award-winning winemaker Gilles Martin has directed the operations of more than two dozen wineries during his fifteen years of viniculture experience and has been the head winemaker at Sherwood House since it’s inception. As head winemaker for Macari Vineyards, his 1997 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay was served at the White House. It was also ranked sixth of all United States Chardonnays by the Beverage Tasting Institute. During Martin’s years as head winemaker at Delas-Freres, in France’s Rhone Valley, he directed the production of such prestigious wines as Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Chateauneuf du Pape, and Condrieu. As assistant winemaker of Roederer Estate in California, Martin trained the staff in the traditions of Methode Champenoise, and helped to produce three wines rated as the best sparkling wines ever crafted outside the Champagne region.