Bennett Valley Wineries
In 1986, Squire and Suzy Fridell packed up their three-year old daughter and all their worldly goods to trade the freeways and the sand of Southern California for the back roads and fertile soil of Sonoma Valley. They purchased twenty-six acres of raw land, just north of the Village of Glen Ellen. The gentle rolling hills were covered with poison oak, oak trees, manzanita trees, madrone trees, bay trees, and a few redwoods. They cut a few of the trees and put in a road, got poison oak, dug a well and brought in power, got more poison oak, built their Cottage, hand-planted two acres of grapevines, and got a lot more poison oak. After a year of Calamine lotion, itching, and cottage living, they got rid of most of the poison oak, built their new home on top of the hill, started building their winery, planted a second vineyard and created a new life for themselves.